|Name: Bell Rock Sedona||Author's Rating:|
|Author: Matthew Marine||Avg. User Rating: Not rated yet|
|Type: Hike||Difficulty: (Learner)|
|Time: 1 - 2 hours||Region: Northwest Arizona|
|Length: ~ 1.4 miles (roundtrip)||Elevation gain/loss/change: ~ +300 ft / -300 ft / 0 ft (roundtrip)|
|Type: Loop||Avg Elevation: 4300 ft|
|Best time to go: fall, spring, winter||Fees: Red Rock Pass|
|Fitness rating: Low||Educational Merit: Low|
|Danger/fear rating: Medium||Scenic Beauty: High|
|Hours of Operation: NA||Last updated: May, 2015|
|Short Description: An easy hike around Sedona's famed Bell Rock|
|Geocaches: A few geocaches in the area: For Whom the Bell Tolls ; Charlie's Angels on Bell Rock ; Bell Rock Hop - Paddlin' Cactus View V2|
|References / Contact Information: Mr. & Mrs. Adventure; Sedona Hiking - Bell Rock; Coconino National Forest|
|Points of interest: Scenic views of Bell Rock and Sedona, Bell Rock vortex, a photographer's paradise|
|Special Considerations: Need a Red Rock Pass to park at parking areas with facilities. Climbing up Bell Rock can be dangerous.|
|How to get there: From Sedona, head south on highway 179 and keep going until you reach the north side of Bell Rock. Turn left into the parking lot at Waypoint 001. Click here for directions.|
Bell Rock Loop is an easy trail that loops around Sedona's famed Bell Rock. It provides you with 360 views of the surrounding area while you are on the hike. Bell Rock climb takes you part of the way up the north side of Bell Rock. I did not climb all the way to the top, but I know it is possible. Be careful when climbing the rocks. The climb to the top can be dangerous and should only be done by experienced hikers. Also, Bell Rock has one of Sedona's best known vortexes. You may feel energized after you do this hike! I hiked this in the morning and it was wonderful.
Bell Rock is one of the best known icons of Sedona, but is not actually located in Sedona. It is actually closer to the Village of Oak Creek (which really isn't near Oak Creek), so it can be a little confusing. Anyway, this is a great short hike with lots of beautiful scenery.
The trail is well-marked with large cairns until you get to about Waypoint 002. The trail can be hard to follow along the loop and there are a few options along the way. Typically, stay on the most well-worn trail at approximately the same elevation as you started.
There are a few points along the hike that if you don't like heights and are a little sketchy if you're not confident about your footing. It wasn't difficult, but an error or misstep on your part could send you to the hospital.
Bell Rock can be crowded at times. Best to go early to beat the crowds. Make sure you bring your camera, there are tons of photo opportunities along the trail.
Park in the parking area at Waypoint 001 and head south toward Bell Rock. The trail is wide and well-marked with large cairns. Walk up the trail for about 0.3 miles until you reach the start of the loop at Waypoint 002.
You have a few options here. You can climb a little further up the face of Bell Rock (BLUE trail on map), or you can do the loop (RED trail on map). I did the loop in RED first, making a counterclockwise trip around Bell Rock. I don't think it matters which direction you take.
From here on out, there are no more large cairns to mark the trail. Since it was so well-marked before, I was expecting this and kept thinking to myself I was off the trail. I wasn't. The trail keeps you at roughly the same elevation as you walk around the bell. Sometimes there are a few options along the trail. Some of these are more difficult than the others. All the options I took eventually came back together, but I am not sure that this is always the case.
There were a few spots that I had to be very careful of footing as I went along some steep rockslides and some narrow paths above a big drop. It's not too bad, but if you're really afraid of heights or don't like this kind of hiking, this may not be the trail for you.
After about 0.8 miles, you will have completed the loop around Bell Rock and be back at Waypoint 002. If you want, you can climb further up the trail (there are one or two more large cairns, but they don't last long). There isn't a "trail" here, just make the best way you can.
I did not climb to the top, but it can be done. If you try this, be very careful and it can be dangerous. I found a website that shows a guy who supposedly leads hikes up there and it looks like fun, but I have not done it yet.
When you're done, head back to the parking lot.