Location: Coconino National Forest, Sedona, AZ
Distance: 3.5 miles
Dog Friendly?: Yes, on a leash
Permits & Fees: Many hikes in Sedona require a Red Rock’s Pass. These passes can be purchased via this website or by using a credit card at various trailheads. It’s $5 for a day pass, $15 for a 7-day pass, or $20 for a year pass.
Driving Directions to Trailhead: Parking is not allowed at the trailhead. In order to access the trailhead, utilize the Sedona Shuttle. Park HERE to access the Shuttle Service. There is also a 1-mile walking path from the shuttle parking lot to the trailhead if you don’t want to wait for the shuttle (I highly recommend this; there are some really pretty views on this path!):
NOTE: Many of the trails require that you take the shuttle, including Cathedral Rock and Soldier Pass Trails. Information on the Sedona Shuttle can be found here.
During the summer, the shuttle runs Thursday – Sunday from 7AM – 5:30PM.
Preparation: Water and sunscreen!
AllTrails Map – CLICK HERE
After taking the shuttle, or walking to the trailhead, walk towards the end of the parking lot. To the right, the trail begins. There is a metal gate at the end of the lot; this is for OHVs:
Begin the hike by crossing a small stream and following the trail using both trail signs and markers:
Less than a mile into the hike, the first landmark is reached; The Sinkhole, also known as Devil’s Kitchen:
Continue along the trail until the second landmark is reached; The Seven Sacred Pools:
We were lucky enough to be here alone and enjoy how beautiful this site is. On our way back down, this site was extremely crowded. I recommend starting this hike as early as possible, especially since it is accessible even without the shuttles running.
Continue along the trail for another mile until a fork in the trail is reached; the path to the right will lead directly to Soldier Pass Cave (this is the most difficult portion of the hike, since it is an uphill climb to the cave):
Once you reach the cave, there is an option to climb up into it via a narrow rock stairway. If you are afraid of heights, you may want to skip this part:
This is the view inside of the cave:
After spending time at the cave, take the same trail back towards the trailhead. After reaching the trailhead, you have the option of catching a shuttle or taking the one-mile walking path back to the parking lot.