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Red Rock Ranger District

Located in the world-famous Sedona area of central Arizona, Red Rock is the most popular District on the Coconino. It offers limitless year-round recreation opportunities against the stunning backdrop for which it is named. Originally territory of the Hohokam, Puebloans, Hopi, and Apache, it was consolidated into the Coconino National Forest in 1908. It comprises 550,000 acres, and is administered by the US Forest Service.

The 10 Essentials

ACTIVITIES:

  • backpacking
  • bird-watching
  • camping
  • climbing
  • day hiking
  • equestrian
  • fishing
  • hunting
  • mountain biking
  • OHV
  • paddling
  • picnicking
  • rafting
  • scenic drive
  • stargazing
  • swimming
  • trail running

HIGHLIGHTS:

Otherworldly rock formations
All or parts of 6 designated wilderness areas
Access to both of Arizona’s Wild & Scenic Rivers
Several archaeological sites
Arizona’s second-largest natural lake (Stoneman)

HABITAT:

This huge district includes desert, grasslands, ponderosa forest, riparian systems, and more.
Elevation ranges from around 2600 in the Verde Valley – 7,307’ (Apache Maid Mountain)

AVAILABILITY:

Open year-round. Check here or call the District for current info on closures and restrictions.

AMENITIES:

5 developed campgrounds, including 2 group sites ($18-235/night)
2 cabins ($75-200/night)
Dispersed camping
50+ trailheads with hundreds of miles of established trails open to hikers, cyclists, equestrian, & OHV
12 Picnic Areas, and 1 Group Picnic Site (FREE – $125)
3 developed archaeological sites
8 water access areas, including 2 boat ramps (non-motorized), several fishing areas, and a designated swimming area

PERMITS / FEES:

No permits or fees for general access. A Red Rock or America the Beautiful Interagency pass is required for parking in several places.
Developed camping & cabin fees range from $18-235
Permits are required seasonally at Fossil Creek.
There are several ‘fee-free’ days annually; more info here.
Check the website or call the District for current fee information.

SPECIAL DESIGNATIONS:

2 Wild & Scenic Rivers: Verde & Fossil Creek
3 Outstanding Arizona Waters: Oak Creek, West Fork Oak Creek, and Fossil Creek
3 Audubon Important Bird Areas: Salt & Verde Riparian Ecosystem, Lower Oak Creek, and Tuzigoot
Red Rock All-American Road
2 Arizona Scenic Roads: Dry Creek and Sedona-Oak Creek Canyon
2 National Recreation Trails: Wilson Mountain and General Crook
5 sites on the National Register of Historic Places

ACCESSIBILITY:

Kid-friendly
Pet-friendly (exceptions are posted, as in established archaeological areas)
ADA: Facilities are available in several spots, but not all. Check the specific site for further info.
Public Transit: YAN Transit and Cottonwood Area Transit (CAT) service the Verde Valley, Rimrock, and Sedona.

NEAREST SERVICES:

Sedona is surrounded by the District. Cottonwood to the west is the largest of the other nearby communities, and is less expensive than Sedona.

HEADS-UP!

Risks include: climate- and temperature-related issues such as exposure and dehydration.
Black bear, javelina, and rattlesnakes live here. Check out this fun PDF guide ‘Venomous Critters and Poisonous Plants of the Verde Valley’ for informational purposes / nightmare fodder.
Cell service is somewhat available (depending on provider) but should not be expected, especially in canyons and in the designated wilderness areas.
Various fire bans or restrictions may be in effect, depending on the season and site.
Check here or call the District for current info.

Flora & Fauna

Because of the wide variety of ecosystems and habitats, the District has an enormous level of biodiversity: there are more than 200 bird species alone, and 9 of the 10 big game animals found in Arizona. Red Rock is also home to these species with special status:

Sedona
45°
Clear
7:33am5:40pm MST
Feels like: 41°F
Wind: 8mph NNE
Humidity: 22%
Pressure: 30.06"Hg
UV index: 0
SunMonTue
66/43°F
63/45°F
52/43°F

hike doe mountain:

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Nichelle

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Meet Nichelle, who when not teaching yoga and pilates in Phoenix, enjoys the natural wonders of Arizona… and the occasional trip to California for some beach time!

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