Cathedral Rock Trail No. 170

Area Status: Open
Cathedral Rock taken from Upper Red Rock Loop Road by Vicki Rice

ALERT: The Cathedral Rock Trail will be closed for trail maintenance from Feb. 28 - April 13 on Wednesdays through Saturdays from 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. See a map of the closure here.

Red Rock Pass Sold Here!

More of a rock climb than a hike, this trail is unshaded and steep and difficult in places. Follow the basket cairns across the wash and up the moderate slope toward the spires. At 0.25 mile, the trail emerges on a broad ledge with nice views. Then, it ascends steeply over bald rock and in a shallow cleft with a few toeholds notched into the rock to help on the steeper places.

Emerging on a small knob, cairns show the way up and across several ledges toward the deep drainage ahead which it follows, climbing moderately steeply to the top of a wide saddle between two spires. Great views all along, but quite spectacular from the top. An unmaintained path leads south along the west base of the spires giving access, with short climbs, to two more saddles between sheer rock faces and a close-up view of an exposed lava dike at the first. Return by the same route for a 1.5 mile hike. Hot in summer.

Trails: Cathedral Rock No. 170

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At a Glance

Area Amenities: Toilets
Usage: Heavy
Best Season: Spring thru Fall
Busiest Season: Summer
Closest Towns: Sedona, AZ
Passes: Red Rock Pass or America the Beautiful Pass required to park at the trailhead.
Operated By: Red Rock Ranger District - 928-203-2900

General Information


Location: 38 miles south of Flagstaff in scenic Red Rock Country.

Directions: From the junction of Routes 89A and 179, take 179 south 3.5 miles to Back O' Beyond Road on the right. Go 0.6 miles to the trailhead parking turnout on the left.

GPS (Map): 34°49'30.7"N 111°47'18.3"W



Click map thumbnail for larger view.

Cathedral Rock Trail Map
Red Rock Country Recreation Map - Sedona Southeast (PDF)


General Notes:

Uses: Hiking only. Not safe for horses or bicycles

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Day Hiking


Toilets: Vault-type toilet

Related Information

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


  Area/Length : 
0.7 miles

  Latitude : 

  Longitude : 

  Elevation : 
4043 at trailhead