Trail Travel

Sedona’s Best Running Trails

It's no secret that Sedona is a trail runners' paradise. There are countless trails within minutes from town. Here's a list of Sedona's best running trails.

It’s no secret that Sedona’s running trails make this oasis a runners paradise. There are practically countless running trails just within a few minutes of town. It’s almost overwhelming to pick a running running trails in Sedona. So here’s a simple list of Sedona’s best running trails.

Soldiers Pass.

Couple running in desert.

Distance: 6.6 Kilometers
Elevation Gain: 189m
Type: Out and back
Time: 1-2 hours

Soldiers pass trail is said to be about as heavily trafficked as Devil’s Bridge or Cathedral Rock trail. however, there was no body on the trail the day I ran it. Therefore, Solider pass trail became one of my all time favourite running trails in the area. Soldier Pass has a very gradual elevation gain from about midway to the top of the pass. The views are spectacular practically the entire time. Soldier Pass is one of the most all around scenic hikes in the area.

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Cathedral Rock.

Female runner on mountain.

Distance: 1.9 Kilometers
Elevation Gain: 227m
Type: Out and back
Time: 1 hour

Cathedral rock is the busiest of the bunch. However, the hundreds of tourists can’t all be wrong. It’s one of the most thrilling and scenic trails in the entire area. The entire trail will have you running up slabs of steep red rock. The only thing better than running up this trail is running back down. Once you reach the saddle at the top, follow the trail left to get a secret view, pictured above.

Devil’s Bridge Trail.

Couple runs on natural bridge.

Distance: 6.8 Kilometers
Elevation Gain: 172m
Type: Out and back
Time: 1-2 hours

Devil’s Bridge Trail is a popular trail just a few minutes from town. The trail is pleasant, and mostly flat until you start the short climb near the end before you reach the natural bridge, known as Devil’s Bridge. It’s worth a quick photo before you make your way back the way you came. Some of the best views are enjoyed on the way back down.

Doe Mountain.

Hot air balloon over mountain.

Distance: 1.9 Kilometers
Elevation Gain: 130m
Type: Out and back
Time: 45-60 minutes

Doe Mountain is shares a parking lot with Bear Mountain. The two mountains face each other across the street. Doe Mountain is more of a butte or a plateau. The initial climb is steep, there are switchbacks the entire way up. Once you’ve reached the top of the plateau you can enjoy views from all over Sedona. There are foot paths through the bushes that will bring you to many different scenic lookouts.

Bear Mountain.

Woman hiker standing on mountain.

Distance: 6.9 Kilometers
Elevation Gain: 600m
Type: Out and back
Time: 2.5-4 hours

Not for the faint of heart. Bear can be a slog in the hot and dry. I recommend starting this one early. However, an early morning start will give you plenty of shade for the first hour. The views come and go on this trail. Occasionally opening up to the beautiful valley below. After the first kilometer approaching the base of the ascent, the climbing is pretty aggressive but very enjoyable. The views from the top are breathtaking! Budget extra time to soak it all in.

Capitol Butte.

Man Running in desert.

Distance: 4.2 Kilometers
Elevation Gain: 545m
Type: Out and back
Time: 2.5-3 hours

Capitol Butte is almost a bushwhack more than it is a typical Sedona running trail. If you’re like me though, sometimes that’s part of the fun. Be prepared to lose some time on navigating. I would only recommend this to savvy runners or hikers. Proceed with caution, this one get’s scrambly!

There’s more than just running in this beautifully scenic town.

If you have the opportunity to visit Sedona’s running trails. Make sure to budget some extra time to enjoy the local the rest of what the area has to offer. Sedona has a lot of adventurous activities to participate in. However, it can be hard to find good information. We’ve got you covered! Read more here.

Did we miss any of Sedona’s best running trails on our list? Let us know your favourites below in the comments!

All images by Life Outside Studio Photographers Ryan Richardson and Hailey Playfair.

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