The red rock of Sedona captured my imagination a long time ago. And it would be a big mistake if we missed it during the Arizona road trip.
The very popular place was quite a dark horse for me. I knew nothing about it, not even what exactly is Sedona. So before I start to show all the photos of this magical place, let me tell everything I learn.
Sedona is not a region as I imagined. It’s a town. And it was named after Sedona Arabella Miller Schnebly, the wife of the city’s first postmaster. And… Her mother said she made up the name. So if you thought (because I did) that Sedona is some magical word from the language of the local tribe, then no – it’s simply a made-up woman name.
Vortex, or Vortices. The word that drives this place. Vortex is the name for the energy spots around the town. The word was introduced by Page Bryant in 1980. There is a list of places where you could feel the power.
The Coconino National Forest. Most of the places we hiked during our stay are part of the national forest lands. You can by Red Rock Pass that should cover the majority of the natural attractions but if you have you National Lands pass it will also work.
Slide Rock State Park
We entered the area from the north. And the entrance is well beyond word ‘scenic.’ The Highway 89A makes several switchbacks before descending to the Oak Creek Canyon.
And then you immediately is surrounded by red and orange walls. The road has a lot of pullouts and vista points. But the best we found is a trail along the creek that ends near the entrance of Slide Rock State Park.
Fay Canyon and Arch
We arrived in the town after the lunch, and the first place we visited was Fay Canyon. The easy hike mile one way has a beautiful spur trail that leads to the arch (or bridge) with the remains of Anasazi building.
Sunset at Baby Bell
The territory of Sedona is relatively small. But it has so many places to see that it’s impossible to do it even during the two days stay.
This is the case when you are searching for the most rewarding trails. Baby Bell trail is one of them. The short (1.5 miles) path leads to the top of the rock that has 360 degrees views. The Bell Rock is higher (obvious) but you will not have the Cathedral Rock view from it.
So Devil’s Bridge. I remember when I first saw the photo of it, I immediately saved it. At first, I thought it is Arches NP. When I found out it wasn’t Utah, I was surprised that there are other places on the Earth with such beauty. And it was the first time I saw the photo of Sedona.
Devil’s bridge for me was like one of the musts in Arizona. I even though (and still do that way) that Grand Canyon should follow Devil’s Bridge in the list of the spots every one needs to visit.
The trail was easier than I imagined. And it had way more people that all sources told me. Especially in the last section.
Though there was almost no line to take a photo on the bridge, and it was easy to make a shot of it without a person in the frame.
We started before 10 am and on the way back we were shocked how many want to hike the trail. The medium size trailhead parking was full, and the cars were parked miles before it!
So it was a day in the half of our adventures in Sedona. And now, writing this post I realize I want to come back and explore more.