Distance: Variable. The standard, maintained trail is 3 miles one-way, but the entire length of West Fork Canyon can be done as a 13-mile day hike or backpack
Difficulty: Easy-Moderate-Expert. Once again, this depends on what you want to do. The maintained trail is very flat, easy, and can be done by small children and hikers that are less experienced/fit. If you choose to continue beyond the maintained trail, the canyon becomes technical, with periods of swimming and rappelling.
Best Season to Hike: Year-round. Winter can be quite cold, with snow and ice. Fall to Spring is the ideal season, with summer being best for swimming and fall being best for outstanding leaf colors.
Permits/Gear: No permits or special gear is required to hike the maintained trail. Parking in the lot costs $5/vehicle. Overnight permits are required, and technical gear may be required to complete the full length of the canyon
What’s the Deal?: Simply put, the West Fork Trail is one of the finest hikes in the American Southwest. It is consistently rated as one of the top 10 trails in the country by authorities such as Backpacker Magazine, Outside Magazine, and Travel Magazine among others. Towering 200 year-old oaks and ponderosa pines, dwarfed still by 1000-foot sheer cliffs of reddish-blonde sandstone is on the menu here. Multiple stream crossings, and scenes reminiscent of Zion National Park all combine to make this trail a veritable buffet of scenery and wonder. However, all of this makes the trail very popular, especially in the summer and fall. Get here ealy if you want a reasonable parking space.
More Information: Call our office at 602-904-2536 for information regarding guides and hiking
How to Get There: From the “Y” in Sedona, go north on HWY 89A to mile marker 383. Follow the signs into the parking lot, if available. Often cars must park on the shoulder of the highway.