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8. Bear Mountain Trail

View from the summit of Bear Mountain
After a series of false summits and tough scrambles, the view from the summit of Bear Mountain melts away your fatigue. Trust me, this is one of the top hikes in Sedona.

Find your bearings on one of the best trails in Sedona

If you’re looking to test your mettle, Bear Mountain Trail is among the more challenging hikes near Sedona. It’s a 20-minute drive from town to the parking lot near the trailhead, then 4-6 hours of leg-burning hiking to reach the top.

When you’re starting a trail and can barely see the summit directly in front of you, you know you’re in for a treat. A sequence of four steep rocky hills stands in your way, creating an escalating desert gauntlet packed with views and verticality. Once you finally reach the highpoint and take in the 360-degree view, you’ll roar with delight. 

Keep in mind that you’ll need a Red Rock Pass for the Bear Mountain Trail. You can get one at a parking lot kiosk located off of Boynton Pass Road. Also, shoes with good traction are a must if you are to scale the steep rocky sections.

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