If natural rock formations are your thing, you’ll love this one. Devil’s Bridge is Sedona’s largest natural sandstone arch and you can walk out onto it!
It sits at 4,600 feet in elevation and you’ll have to climb roughly 420 feet to reach it. This gem is a must-see for travelers, photographers, and the like. Although it is very popular due to its accessibility from the city, it is not one you’ll want to miss out on!
Devil’s Bridge Trail Stats
Distance: 4 miles RT
Peak Elevation: 4,600 ft.
Elevation Gain: 420 ft.
Type: Out and Back
Dog Friendly: Yes
Location: Sedona, AZ
Trailhead: Devil’s Bridge Trailhead
Parking: Parking lot off Dry Creek road
Permits: $5 Red Rock Pass. Learn more here.
Note: For the purpose of this post all statistics are measured from the main parking lot where the majority of people have to park. If you have 4WD and can drive directly to the trailhead you’ll have a shorter hike.
How to get there
There are essentially three different ways to reach Devil’s Bridge Trailhead. Which one you take will highly depend on if you have 4WD or not, and on parking. I’ve listen the options below.
With a 4×4 High Clearance Vehicle
If you’re lucky enough to have (or rent) a 4×4 high clearance vehicle or side by side, you’re in luck! You’ll turn down Dry Creek Road and drive all the way to Devil’s Bridge Trailhead.
Here you can park in the small dirt lot and begin your hike. If you hike from the trailhead it’ll be 2 miles round trip!
Without a 4×4
If you don’t have a 4×4 vehicle, no need to worry. The majority of hikers have to park at the paved parking lot directly off Dry Creek Road. It is the last turn on the left hand side before the pavement ends- you can’t miss it!
Park here and begin your hike, headed down the dirt road.
Another option is to park at the Mescal Trailhead. Instead of turning right onto Dry Creek Road, continue down Boyton Pass Road a little further and turn right on Long Canyon Road. There will be a small parking lot to park at.
Mescal Trailhead is a mostly flat trail frequently used by mountain bikers so stay alert. This is a much more scenic option than hiking down Dry Creek Road and if I had to choose again, I’d choose this one.
You’ll follow along the trail for one mile and then connect to Devil’s Bridge Trail.
Pin this hike for later!
When to visit
Phew, I know summertime is when most of us get to do our traveling, but if you hike this one in 90+ degree weather it will be a hot one! And I don’t suggest it unless you are a very early riser.
The best time to hike in Sedona is spring, fall, or winter. 99% of the hike leaves you exposed to the sun. While the cooler temperatures will help with the heat, you’ll still want to bring a hat, sunglasses, and/or sunscreen.
Expect it to be packed even as early as 8 a.m. during peak tourist seasons! You’ll want to start this hike really early to try to miss the crowds or catch it during the week. Due to the popularity, there will most likely be a wait at the top to walk onto the bridge.
Hiking to Devil’s Bridge
When we hiked to Devil’s Bridge we had to park along the Boyton Pass Road (main road) and walk about a quarter mile to the parking lot and beginning of dirt road. No biggy!
The hike down Dry Creek Road is completely exposed and sandy/dusty most of the way. The 4×4 vehicles and local jeep tours will most likely be passing by. Some are considerate about dusting you out while others are not. This is where your sunglasses or a bandanna would come in handy!
After about 1 mile you’ll reach Devil’s Bridge Trail on the right side of the dirt road. The turn is very well marked and you can’t miss it.
As stated above, there is a small parking lot here to park 4×4’s if you’re arriving in one. Just like any other trailhead there is a map and more information posted at the beginning.
Once you’re off Dry Creek Road and on Devil’s Bridge Trail the hike becomes much more scenic and less busy. Eventually the trail will make you begin climbing elevation and the remainder of the hike becomes moderate.
Luckily there are some great spots to stop for snacks or photo breaks. The views just keep getting better as you climb. There isn’t much shade on the way up so if it is busy you might be fighting for it.
After climbing a few hundred feet in elevation up the series of natural rock steps, the trail evens out and sooner than you know you’re walking parallel to Devil’s Bridge!
If it is busy you’ll be waiting in line for your turn to walk the bridge and take your photos. Everyone always asks how wide the bridge is and if it is scary. I’ve seen groups of people walk out together no problem! It is not as scary as it looks.
If you’re lucky enough to have the place to yourself it is sure to be a peaceful view. There is also a trail that leads down below the bridge. If you can find it you may want to view Devil’s Bridge from down below!
Once you’ve gotten your fill, you’ll hike out the way you came.
More Great Hikes in Sedona
When it comes to hiking trails, Sedona is abundant. You almost can’t go wrong choosing any trail in the Red Rock Wilderness! But here are some that you won’t want to miss-
- Soldier Pass Cave- One of the most unique caves in the area to climb up in. Along the way you’ll hike past Devil’s Kitchen and Seven Sacred Pools, two other very unique points of interest.
- Cathedral Rock- A short but steep climb up to one of the most popularly photographed spots. Catch the sunrise or sunset here for a unique experience.
- Birthing Cave- A short hike to a very interesting cave. This one will make you work strategically in order to photograph it.
Final thoughts on Devil’s Bridge
The hike to Devil’s Bridge is very enjoyable once you begin on the actual Devil’s Bridge Trail. The bridge itself is neat to see, and a fun landmark to photograph.
The popularity of this one, however, makes it a little less enjoyable. If you begin your hike during the peak days and times of the week you’ll find yourself waiting in line to take your turn walking on the bridge.
I think that really takes away from the reward at the top. Still, this is one hike you should do at least once if you haven’t already. I like to do it every couple years- next time I may try it in the winter!
As always, please be considerate of the environment so we can keep enjoying it and remember to leave no trace.