Hiking Galore in Sedona
The Sedona, Cottonwood, Prescott area in Northern Arizona presents a smörgåsbord of outdoor recreation. Our favorite activity is hiking and we really hit the motherlode with our boondocking spot in Sedona. It's hiking-a-go-go here, so much so there were a few days that we actually had to give up on a trail we planned to hike because it was too busy with no place to park the truck. It's hard to be upset that so many people are outside enjoying nature. That has to be a good thing for the world.
We walked quite a few trails but here are 4 highlights that were great for different reasons:
Great for stunning views
Doe Mountain is a popular trail, as evidenced by the consistently busy parking lot at the trailhead. We had much more luck when parking in the late afternoon, and had a wonderful sunset hike up this steep but not too challenging trail. At the top you are find yourself on a mesa, and you can wander around to see breathtaking views all over Sedona.
Great for wide open space
When you reach Bell Rock parking lot, you may be forgiven for thinking they must be giving away free ice-cream for it to be that crowded. But if you can find an open parking spot I suggest you jump on the Courthouse Butte trail, where you will quickly leave the hoards behind after 5 mins of walking. You will be rewarded with a 4 to 5 mile hike over relatively flat terrain, surrounded by magnificent rock formations wherever you look.
Great for a variety of landscapes
Boynton Canyon starts off like a lot of Sedona hikes, you can see rooftops at the beginning, then suddenly find yourself in the middle of staggering red rock beauty. Where this trail is different is that as you hike into the box canyon, suddenly you start to be in shade, and you are in among tall tress - very un-Arizona. The hike is fairly flat until the end where there is a little rock scramble to a high point with a beautiful view down the canyon.
Great when you don't want to stray far from town
A lot of hiking trails in Sedona are right off the main 89A route through town. We chose to hike around Thunder Mountain. There are lots of interconnected trails here so you can hike for as long as you like, we stayed out for an hour or two looping back to the base of Thunder Mountain when we were done.