When the guide books tell you that West Fork Trail is one of the prettiest trails in Sedona – I would have to agree with them. Instead of hiking up to the mesas and overlooks, today we hiked along a canyon. This area, due to the abundant water and limited sun, has plants that would not survive outside of the canyon. As we walked along, the reds and yellows of the leaves lit up when the sun shone on them. You could hear the running of the water along the creek the entire way up the path and look way, way up at the cliffs that tower above it. There are 13 creek crossings along the way – today, the water was not really deep enough to cause any problems if you missed a step.
This is a fairly short hike to the end of the path – about 3 to 3.5 miles – so don’t give up before you get to the end. As with the overlooks on previous days, the best is at the end. This trail ends where the creek cuts through a narrow passage in the rocks. We were fortunate today that the water was lower and we were able to walk a good way up this narrow gorge, seeing how the water had cut through the rocks, curving out the walls.
This is a very popular walk, so if you are looking for solitude here, you won’t find it. However, hikers are mostly a friendly bunch and you can make new friends along the way.
After hiking the canyon, we headed back toward Camp Verde, stopping to see Montezuma’s Castle. This .3 mile loop was filled with information about the puebloan cliff dwellings used by the Sinagua people 700 years ago.
- North Wilson Mountain
- Devil’s Bridge