One of the reasons hiking in Sedona is so popular is because there are a wide variety of trails that cater to people of all ability levels. Bell Rock is conveniently located on the south side of Sedona about half way between The Chapel of the Holy Cross and The Village of Oak Creek.
Where is Bell Rock?
It's about a 15 minute drive south from Sedona's main square. If you plan to visit The Chapel this is a great activity to pair with that stop due to their close proximity.
As usual in Sedona, parking here can be suspect. Fortunately the trail is short (1.1 miles according to AllTrails.com) which means parking spaces turnover a bit more quickly.
Looking for tips to save on airfare? Check out a full post I wrote on the subject here!
If you're patient, you should be able to snag a spot without too much difficulty! There's also a bathroom located at the trailhead.
The Trail Isn't Well Marked - But That's Part of Bell Rock's Charm
Once you park and find the trailhead - it's a fairly straight shot towards Bell Rock. However, once you get a little ways in you'll realize the official trail isn't well marked. Don't let that deter you, the area is fairly open and easy to traverse. Being able to spread out from other groups is a unique perk of this hike.
The area is so wide open - we spotted a wedding ceremony, tour groups, hikers and people teaching yoga class each with plenty of room to do their own thing!
Is the Bell Rock Hike Difficult?
When we visited we only went up the 'easy' part of Bell Rock, once the terrain started getting steep we turned back since we saw what we came to see. A nice feature of this area is you can make your visit as short or lengthy as you'd like.
Looking for something more difficult? Keep going up Bell Rock and the terrain will become more a scramble and rock climb than walk.
Bell Rock is great and so is the surrounding area. The trail up Bell Rock itself is a must, but there are other trails that branch off from the main one that are worthy if you have the time.
The Bell Rock Trail Offers 'Just Enough' Elevation Gain for a Great View
Fortunately, the view shown below is what you can enjoy by venturing up the super easy portion of Bell Rock. If you're feeling more adventurous and go further the extra elevation will only improve the already spectacular scenery!
While parking here isn't great, the short duration of the trail helps mitigate the issue. On the particular evening we visited Bell Rock we had initially planned on doing the Cathedral Rock hike around sunset.
We failed miserably at getting a parking space (there was tons of traffic and people waiting in the lots) at Cathedral Rock but ultimately we were very happy with how the evening panned out!
Initially I was bummed that we missed out on the Cathedral Rock hike (it was our last night) but ultimately very very pleased with how our time was spent at Bell Rock instead.
Planning to visit Sedona? Be sure to check out my YouTube video guide that highlights all of my favorite activities in the area!
We had three and a half days in Sedona and frankly it wasn't enough. There's still so much more I plan to see and do when I go back!
Looking for Hiking Gear Recommendations?
Chances are if you're visiting Sedona you'll be doing some hiking. If you're doing some hiking you'll want to have the right gear in order to have the best experience possible.
Finding gear that's functional, not overpriced, that also looks good can be a challenge.
For your convenience I've laid out some of my favorite hiking apparel below. All of the gear I link to below are items I personally own and have tested out on the trails. Quick disclaimer, I am an affiliate of several referral programs and I may earn from qualifying purchases at no extra cost to you.
Hiking day pack - If you're in the market for a hiking day pack I'd suggest browsing REI's selection. If you've never owned one before you can go into a retail store and they'll ensure you find one that fits properly with any of the bells and whistles you may require!
Water reservoir - I have reservoirs from Platypus and Gregory that I really like. While these come in a variety of sizes I wouldn't bother with those smaller than 3L. You can always just fill up the larger ones part way if you're concerned about weight since they collapse to the same size.
Moisture wicking t-shirts - Patagonia makes really great hiking t-shirts that keep you dry all day long. They also perform well under multiple layers of clothing.
Hiking socks - I absolutely love the FEIDEER brand of hiking socks. I've tried some other hiking sock brands, but I think these take the cake! They make great socks for both women and men.
There's nothing worse than missing out on a great hike because you didn't come prepared, don't be that person!
Looking for more Sedona ideas?
Be sure to check out my post on the West Fork of Oak Creek Trail if you haven't already. It's a must see stop in Sedona and while the stated trail distance is a somewhat lengthy 6.6 miles, you get to take in some of the best scenery at the beginning.
This means you can pick a distance that fits your schedule while still experiencing the best that West Fork has to offer!
If you're visiting during the hotter months the West Fork Trail is a great option due to the amount of tree cover it offers. Hopefully you found this post helpful - thanks for reading!