No visit to Sedona would be complete without a visit to Slide Rock State Park. Originally a residence, Slide Rock State Park is a 43-acre historic apple farm located in Oak Creek Canyon. Frank L. Pendley, having arrived in the canyon in 1907, formally acquired the land under the Homestead Act in 1910. Due to his pioneering innovation, he succeeded where others failed by establishing a unique irrigation system still in use by the park today. Today, visitors can enjoy viewing the historic cabins and the creek offers an 80 foot “water slide” for adventure seekers looking for a place to cool off.
With that being said, we went to Slide Rock to go down the slide! It was still a bit early in the afternoon, and a cool 75 degrees with a breeze. I put my toe in the water and it was frigid cold! I did some second guessing before finally deciding to head to the beginning of the slide. Since everything under the water was slippery from the algae cover rocks, the second I sat down to get adjusted to the water temperature, I simply slid into the freezing water. Down the slide I went, at times getting nearly submerged in the cold water. Getting out was the tricky part because you literally had to jump out of the water, up and over the slippery edges. My sister was hilarious when she tried to exit the slide, frantically slipping and crawling over the edges to the dry rocks. Luckily the Arizona heat dried us off in the matter of minutes, so the quick freeze was well worth the fun ride down the slide. If only we were able to talk my brother into going down. He opted to be our photographer instead.
The 4.2 mile out-and-back hike to Devil’s Bridge is another must visit when traveling to Sedona. The bridge itself is the largest natural sandstone arch in the Sedona area, which offers beautiful views of Red Rock country. The official trailhead is located 1 mile from the Dry Creek Road/Devil’s Bridge Trail Parking Lot. Only ATV’s or 4-wheel drive vehicles should attempt to make the mile long journey on the rocky, uneven, dirt road to the official trailhead. Since we only had a Mitsubishi Mirage, we thought it would be best to walk.
Once we reached the official trailhead, the only option for everyone was to hike the remaining mile to the bridge. The hike is fairly easy, with a constant, gradual incline and some steps as you near the top of the bridge. You know you’ve made it when you see dozens of people stopped taking photos. Lucky for us, there were only a handful of people up by the bridge when we arrived, and even though we had to wait to take our photos, the views helped us pass the time. We took photos and relaxed for about an hour, to the point where only the three of us and two other ladies remained at the bridge. We got some solitude on an ordinarily busy hike, so we couldn’t have asked for a better visit to the Devil’s Bridge.