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This Short 1.4-Mile Hike in Sedona Will Reward You With Endless Red Rock Views

Suny Errot



The Cathedral Rock Trail is easily one of Sedona’s most beautiful hiking spots. In fact, you’ll probably find it on any hiking or travel site due to its immense popularity among travelers and outdoor enthusiasts. Here’s a question for you: have you ever visited the Cathedral Rock Trail? If not, what are you waiting for? Now is the best time!

The Cathedral Rock Trail: A Challenging 1.4-Mile Hike

The Cathedral Rock Trail is a relatively short hike but proves to be quite a challenge because you’ll already break a sweat from your starting point.

Here are the coordinates for the Cathedral Rock Trailhead No. 170: 34°49’30.7″N 111°47’18.3″W

This trail is heavily used by many hikers, so you should expect limited parking when you reach the destination. It’s also worth noting that this is the easiest and most direct trail to reach the summit. If you prefer something else, you can always look for other trails.

What should you expect? If you’re hiking here, you’ll be walking along a flat path that gradually turns into a steep climb. At first, it will feel like you are simply breeze walking, but you will soon need to use your hands and feet to climb safely between the red Sedona rocks. It helps to have sturdy hiking shoes with spikes so you can navigate freely in this rocky terrain. There are still hikers who trek the Cathedral Rock Trail wearing flip flops. It’s pretty dangerous and can be uncomfortable for you.

Note: Don’t forget to stop every now and then to admire the unique perspective of the surrounding rocks. The beautiful Sedona landscape will become more evident as you climb higher, so be sure to take lots of photos!

What You Should Know

  • You can also take your furry friend in this upwards scramble so you can both enjoy the marvelous views. Pack water and some trail snacks to recharge after every 30 minutes.
  • Before starting the hike, you will need to purchase a Red Rock Pass for parking. It costs $5. You can buy one online, at an entry booth or visitor desk, or through a vending machine.
  • Do you want to know when to hike to see the best views? It’s best if you can visit in the morning or even right before sunset. It will also give you the most beautiful photos.

Sheer Beauty and Healing Energy

We don’t know if this really comes as a surprise to you, but the Cathedral Rock is said to be one of Sedona’s biggest vortex spots. A vortex spot is a special space where energy enters and projects out of the earth’s plane. Hikers will feel a surge of healing energy and feel rejuvenated after hiking to the top (or even at the ground).

Check out These Awesome Spots!

Platform Rock

Platform Rock Picture Spot

Source: Instagram

Many hikers can’t get enough of this beautiful spot located at the top of Cathedral Rock trail. Once you reach the top, it’s just to the left of your first view. It may look intimidating and really scary, but in reality, it’s not that intense. You just have to refrain from standing or sitting too close to the edge, and all will be alright. It looks like a straight drop-off, but it’s not a “fall-to-your-death” type of slope.

The Edge Of The World

Edge of the World Cathedral Rock Sedona

Source: Instagram

What can you expect from the edge of the world? Of course, it should only be dramatic and humbling. The sandstone pillars will rise up around you, making you appear small (almost like a dwarf), and can give epic photos. Just look at it. It’s amazing.

You can find the Edge of the World to the far right of the viewing area at the top. The drop from this area is high and steep, so don’t fool around with friends and remember to take caution.

What else can you wish for? Sedona’s endless rock views and the mesmerizing skies frankly offer a unique yet charming setting that will appear in your dreams. It is like staring at a real life canvas with an art that’s blended beautifully together.

Cathedral Rock Trail Details

Difficulty Level: Difficult
Distance: 1.4 miles (round trip)
Elevation: 645 feet
Peak Hiking Times: Summer, mid-day
Best Photography/Hiking Experience: Early morning or before sunset

Website: https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/coconino/recarea/?recid=55264


You will see great views along the entirety of this activity, so be sure to take lots of photos as you enjoy the hike. If you want a fancier activity, you can try this tour that combines a river kayak adventure and wine tasting!