|when||Trip Report : April 18, 2009|
|Trip Report : May 1, 2004|
|where||Sedona – Red Rock Secret Mountain Wilderness|
We have hiked these two trails as separate hikes in years past, but
with the trailheads so close together, it only makes sense to combine
them into one day hike to two of Sedona’s most spectacular and popular
landmarks. Devil’s Bridge is the largest of the natural arches found
in the Sedona area. Vultee Arch is named after early aviation pioneer
Gerald Vultee, who was killed nearby in a plane crash with his wife,
Sylvia, in 1938.
The first half mile of the Devil’s Bridge Trail follows an abandoned jeep trail – wide and fairly level. The trail begins to climb and gets steeper, as we get closer to the bridge. Three quarters of a mile in, we will come to a fork in the trail. The path to the left goes through a wash and some heavy brush, before emerging under the bridge about 50 feet directly overhead. The right hand path will take us up to a steep, natural rock staircase that will provide us with more spectacular views of the bridge. If we wish to continue on, the trail will eventually take us right out onto the bridge itself, where we can walk across, and then up above the bridge for one last view looking down on this impressive arch.
The Vultee Arch Trail is under tree cover and provides shade for almost the entire distance to the arch, although the arch itself is not as easily accessible as Devil’s Bridge. This trail also climbs and gains more elevation, as we get nearer to the arch, crossing a normally dry creekbed several times. About 1.5 miles from the trailhead we will reach a signed junction with the Sterling Pass Trail, which forks to the right. We will take the left fork and follow the rock cairns up to a large bare rock bench, where a brass plaque commemorates Vultee and his wife. The arch itself is only a few hundred feet away from here, but requires some serious bushwhacking through thick, heavy brush to actually reach. We will stop here for a rest and lunch break and take a few pictures, before returning on the same route.
|distance||Devil’s Bridge: 1.6 miles RT. Vultee Arch: 3.4 miles RT.|
|EC||+-270' (Devil’s Bridge), +-610' (Vultee Arch)|
|elevations||4590' (Devil’s Bridge Trailhead) to 5410' (Vultee Arch)|
|on trail||95% — Devil’s Bridge Trail, Vultee Arch Trail|
|rating||"C" Rate yourself as a hiker.|
Sharing gas expenses with the driver.
The club also allows voluntary contributions of $5/non-member
|7:00 AM in the Fry’s parking lot on the SW corner of I-17 & Bell Road. Park behind Denny’s, near the entrance to the Deer Valley Park & Ride.|
8:45 AM at the Red Rock Ranger District Visitor Center,
8375 State Route 179, just south of the Village of Oak Creek.
Call 928-203-7500 or 928-203-2900 for directions.
34° 45.462' N, 111° 45.826' W [NAD27]
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