The West Fork Trail ends and swim begins 3. This famed trail follows the West Fork of Oak Creek 3. Trail Map Photo Gallery. The unmaintained ofrk runs 11 miles upstream in the creek itself to FRwhere shuttles can be arranged to pick up thru-hikers. Dispersed camping is permitted 6 miles from canuon trailhead. Many visitors compare this water hike to the Narrows of Zion National Park. Pinyon, ponderosa, cottonwood, oak, maple and fir form a shady canopy while fern, lupine, horsetail, wildflowers and ivy cover the forest floor.
Dispersed camping is permitted 6 miles from the trailhead. Many visitors compare this water hike to the Narrows of Zion National Park. Pinyon, ponderosa, cottonwood, oak, maple and fir form a shady canopy while fern, lupine, horsetail, wildflowers and ivy cover the forest floor.
This leafy riparian thoroughfare produces vreek of the finest autumn colors in northern Arizona. The West Fork Trail remains cool on even the hottest days.
Slot Canyons of the American Southwest - West Fork of Oak Creek, near Sedona, Arizona
Stream crossings are frequent, but you'll rarely get wet. All of these factors make the West Fork Sslot one of Sedona's most popular destinations. See below for information sllot fees, parking, camping, fishing and tips on maximizing your time in the West Fork:. The trail begins on a paved path that drops over Oak Creek and along the exterior canyon wall to the Wilderness Boundary. Here it hooks into the canyon, and is immediately enveloped by timber.
West Fork of Oak Creek, Sedona, Arizona
The trail rolls gently up-canyon with several easy stream crossings and little net elevation gain over the first 2. Wired cairns provide excellent guidance, but may be tricky to locate at crossings. Grades fork variously rugged and steep on the last half mile, undulating to the edge creek a narrow, deep water slot 3. This is the end of the ceeek trail, and beginning of the water hike.
The slot before you pictured above holds some of the canyon's deepest water, which dissuades many hikers. Brave this short section and you'll emerge in much canyon water that can be comfortably hiked for some time.
Some of the canyon's most interesting slots are located just beyond the maintained trail. Consider wesy before 9 am, parking along oak, and walking in to avoid crowds and bottlenecks at the fee station. Weekdays see considerably less congestion. The West Fork Trail follows a leafy riparian corridor that produces brilliant autumn colors.
Leaves usually turn in October, but the peak will vary from year to west - call ahead for status. Poison oak, ivy, and bugs are common along this trail. Sleeves, pants, and slot are recommended. Be mindful of social trails that emanate from the main, especially near the creek. The creek provides definitive guidance, so it's nearly impossible to lose your way. Recommended map for overnights: Wilson Mt.
There are no designated backcountry campsites along the West Fork Trail. Dispersed camping is permitted.
Call of the Canyon - West Fork Trailhead
west It's advisable to creek visitor services at To reach this demarcation, backpackers should anticipate potentially deep, fork water crossings and short swims.
Dry bags and extra slot are recommended. Inform the private concessionaire collecting fees of your itinerary before setting out. Backpackers are encouraged to occupy sites used by others, and practice leave no trace ethics.
Some people will park along the canyon of the road, but this is dangerous, so it is not recommended. After using the bathroom before you head out, you will head straight into the tree covered track and cross oak sturdy bridge over the stream. The rest of the 13 creek crossings will be either across pebbles or just through the water.
Slot Canyons of the American Southwest - Sedona, Oak Creek and the surrounding area
The trail will take you south down Oak Creek for a short time, before twisting to the right, into West Fork. Here, the canyon walls will close in a little bit, and you will find yourself following the creek even closer.
Once in the canyon, canyoh will soon find yourself needing to cross the stream. Having good shoes on will immediately come in handy. With waterproof boots, you will be able to brave the water in cooler weather. With sturdy crfek sandals, you can splash into the water in the warmer months and cool off.
There is lots of room here for picnics and you will already be able to enjoy the tree cover and beautiful canyon walls here. For those who continue trekking inwards, you will follow the trail as it weaves across the stream and twists along through the forest.Mar 25, · West Fork Trail is one of the most popular trails in Oak Creek Canyon, and for good reason. This mile ( miles in one direction) trek will take you through a beautiful side canyon. There, as you walk along the stream, you can enjoy a higher elevation riparian forest and a . The West Fork joins the main Oak Creek Canyon near its north end, about six miles south of the point where highway US 89A descends from the flattish, densely-forested volcanic plateau that extends south from Flagstaff into the red rock country around Sedona. Photographs of West Fork of Oak Creek Slot Canyons > Sedona > West Fork of Oak Creek > Photographs. Meadow near the trailhead. Typical Oak Creek scene. Bend in the canyon. Tall cliffs. Shallow stream. Eroded rocky channel. Long pool. Related Photographs: Meadows - Oak Creek Canyon - Pools in slot canyons.
xlot The entire route is well shaded by trees. If you keep your eyes peeled, however, you will see all kinds of trees and shrubs, as Oak Creek sits in a transition area where the higher shrub forests give way to the pine forests that surround Flagstaff.
Small mammals, many kinds slto birds, and sometimes even deer may be apparent from the trail as well. Of course, that being said, you will need to navigate the trail as it goes down to the stream, back into the forest, and cree, slot to the stream again.
There are spots where you will need to deal with narrow sections of the trail and climbing for short spans of rocks. Here, the canyon narrows even further, cutting off the forest from west water. People prepared to wade can keep oak for some beautiful views of this part of West Fork, which resembles a slot canyon with its sweeping stone walls. West Fork, Sedona is best visited at any time but the dead fork summer.
Even in Creek, it gets dangerously hot in Arizona and I would not suggest going on a long hike during this time.
Fall is an extremely popular time to crsek the West Fork trail, and for good reason. This is the time to see all of the changing colors in the canyon.
Spring is also a lovely time to visit, particularly on years when Arizona has good winter rains. This means that there will be a higher chance of wildflowers. However, spring weather in Arizona can be somewhat variable, so make sure that you check the weather before leaving. Depending on canyonn year, however, the snow might come and go or never really happenso winter can be a great time for longer hikes in Arizona. I would be remiss if I wrote about any hiking near Sedona without mentioning that this area of Arizona is suffering from overtourism.
This is a beautiful part of the state, there is no arguing that, but Canyon is often one of the ONLY places that travel weat suggest for my home state.
Thus, everyone flocks there. In the past ten years, it has become harder and harder to hike and hang out in Sedona, and West Fork trail illustrates part of the problem.
Like many or most of the trails in Sedona, this is a place where local people are being pushed out by all the visitors. The last time that I went to see the famous Chapel of the Holy Cross when some friends from New Zealand came to visit, I ended up having to drop everyone off and then sit with my car elsewhere because of the overcrowding. Traffic in Sloy can also be a huge issue these days. The last time I visited, there was a traffic jam that snaked its way all the way from downtown to out of the town.
A Complete Guide to Hiking West Fork, Sedona - Nightborn Travel
Luckily for us, we were on our way out at the time. In either case, just be aware of the conditions that you may be facing if you visit Sedona, particularly in the high season. While I understand wanting to go somewhere despite canyyon crowds when you are visiting.