|View from the Anaconda Trail|
Blending old favorites with a couple of newly adopted trails, this circuit in the Cockscomb cluster of routes in Sedona is a low-traffic gem. Located near several of Red Rock Country’s most popular hikes (Boynton Canyon, Bear Mountain, Fay Canyon) these trails offer refreshing serenity under fragrant cover of high desert scrub woodlands. The trek begins on the old Arizona Cypress trail with a traipse through thickets of sage-colored juniper, the eponymous shaggy-barked evergreens and elegant white-trunk sycamores along Dry Creek. A trailhead map shows numerous ways to create loop hikes in the area. I selected the new Snake and Anaconda trails using Girdner trail for the return leg. Anaconda, with its zigzagging mix of easy dips and climbs was an especially enjoyable route with many scenic views and a sprinkling of wildflowers to boot. Choose this trek if you’re looking peace and quiet.
|Cockscomb rock formation|
LENGTH: 4.2-mile loop
ELEVATION: 4400’ – 4678’
From the AZ179/89A roundabout in Sedona, go 3.2 miles west on 89A to Dry Creek Road. Turn right (north) and continue 2.7 miles to an unmarked dirt road (FR9589) on the left. This is roughly 0.1 mile before the Long Canyon Road junction. Go 0.2 mile on this narrow but sedan-friendly road to a large parking circle. Trail access is just before the circle and at the “closed area” sign at the south end of the lot.
INFO: Red Rock Ranger District, Coconino National Forest, 928-203-2900
FEE: a Red Rock Pass is required. $5 daily fee.