Friday was our last full day in Arizona and as amazing as the Canyon is, we wanted to see some other sights as well. We were up early and headed off for Sedona.
Sedona feels like a completely different world from the Grand Canyon. There’s just something about it. We were both super sore from the previous 2 days so we knew we weren’t up for something intense. So after a stop at the local Golden, errr Teal, Arches, my mother says- hey I found a trail. It’s called Devil’s Bridge and it’s only a 1.8 mile round trip hike. Ok, sounds pretty chill.
The trail head was crowded so we had to park on the street just as many others were doing. That should have been the first sign. Since it was a short hike, I didn’t feel like taking my pack and almost didn’t take water. I grabbed a bottle at the last moment and shoved it in my handheld.
As we walked into the trail area, the second sign appeared. This one literal- Devil’s Bridge, 2 miles from this point, take water. Hmmm, ok, I knew we parked on the street but it shouldn’t be 1 mile to the trail head??? And it wasn’t. Color me confused.
We picked up the trail and headed out. I was even more confused as there were a lot of cars in the trailhead lot not to mention those that parked on the street- but there was no one on the trail? The only people we saw were a couple of mountain bikers who were headed for a different trail. This continued for almost a mile. Were we lost?? The trail finally dumped us out onto an OHV road with an arrow saying it was the way to Devil’s Bridge. Ok?
Other than the deep sand we were walking in, the trail was fairly easy. But there was no way this was 1.8 miles roundtrip. Then we hit another trailhead. Huh? This one was only accessible by foot or by a high-lifted 4X4. Interesting. Not only were we running into more people, the trail was getting a little more technical. Ok. We kept going.
The views were amazing, so the extra distance wasn’t an issue. I had a Buff so I was keeping it up when people got a little close on the trail. It also helped me hide my facial expression when I overheard a conversation. A woman and man were hiking together and judging by their gear and clothes- they were athletes- runners or cyclists- something. But then I hear the woman say that she doesn’t like how spaced out the stone steps/ dirt was. It just wasn’t working for her stride and she wished it was different. Huh????? Sure, let me call Mother Nature about that right now.
The trail became more intense the closer you got to the Devil’s Bridge- like you now needed your hands to climb up rocks and steps to reach higher parts of the trail. Again, the parents letting their children run wild surprised me. There was a lookout point and then one last rocky climb up to the level of Devil’s Bridge– only to discover where all the people were. There was an hour+ line for top of the bridge photo ops! What??
No, I didn’t wait. There were way too many people. I tried to take some arch pics from where I was and then I headed back. Now we had to negotiate those same rock climbs going down- and I ate it on the first one- like I bounced. So much for having a big backside- other hikers told me they heard my tailbone hit rock. Yep, felt that one. Ouch.
Then we hiked back out following the OHV trail the whole way. Where once again we saw a sign- it too said Devil’s Bridge was 2 miles from that point- but it was still 1/2 mile or so to the other sign that said the same thing. So the true length of the trail is anyone’s guess. My watch showed 4.6 miles roundtrip.
The trail was gorgeous but I was a little broken- so the rest of the day was spent just strolling around downtown Sedona, hitting all the tourist stops. I would love to go back and spend more time on trails, maybe just in better shape.
Oh and my backside? Bruises that rivaled my dog attack- and it hurt to sit for over a week.