Soldier Pass Trail No. 66
This trail provides a diverse experience beginning in an urban setting and eventually leads into Red Rock Secret Mountain Wilderness, increasing the potential for solitude. The first half of this trail is often busy, and there is jeep tour and off-road vehicle traffic nearby. Enter at the signed trailhead which is open only from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. The trail dips to cross a wash then climbs out to the Devils Kitchen sinkhole just off the trail to the right at 1/4 miles. The trail then goes over level ground for 1/4 mile to the "Seven Sacred Pools" (photo) to the left of the trail.
It continues on in the partial shade of Arizona cypress and intersects the end of a jeep road at 1.2 miles. The trail forks at the wilderness area boundary sign 1/8 mile further on. The right branch leads up rather steeply for 1/4 mile to an arch. Great views. The left branch is the main trail. This leads out of the wash on a moderate grade. Most of the shade is lost, but the views open up. The trail becomes increasingly steep and rocky as it climbs to the pass. Nearing 2 miles, it levels out on top of Brins Mesa, then continues for another 1/4 miles where it intersects Brins Mesa Trail. Ultimately, scenic vistas can be enjoyed south into Sedona and north into the wilderness and the red cliffs of the Mogollon Rim. Return by the same route for a 4.5 mile round trip hike.
Soldier Pass Motorized Access: The unpaved section Soldier Pass Road provides access for motorized vehicles to visit Devil's Kitchen sinkhole, "Seven Sacred Pools," and the Forest Roads in the area. Motorized access beyond the trailhead requires a permit. Get more information and apply for a permit at Soldier Pass Motorized Use Permits. As of Jan. 8, 2020 Recreation.gov will be handling motorized use permits.
At a Glance
|Closest Towns:||Sedona, AZ|
|Operated By:||Red Rock District - 928-203-2900|
General InformationGeneral Notes:
Uses: Hiking, horseback riding, biking (bicycles allowed only for the first 1.3 miles to Wilderness Boundary)
Hiking time: allow 2.5 hours roundtrip
Note: This trailhead only has 14 parking spots and no trash or restroom facilities. Additional parking and restroom facilities may be found at the Jim Thompson Trailhead off of Jordan road. Bicycles are prohibited in Wilderness area.
Location: 28 miles south of Flagstaff (1 mile north of Sedona) on paved and dirt Forest roads in scenic red rock country.
Access: From the junction of Routes 89A and 179, take 89A west 1.2 miles to Soldier Pass Road on the right. Go 1.5 miles to Rim Shadows Drive, then right 0.2 miles (keep straight ahead where Rim Shadows branches left) to a gated entry road to trailhead parking on the left.
GPS (Map): 34°53'03.4"N 111°47'01.8"W
USGS Maps: Wilson Mountain
Click map thumbnail for a larger view.
Map showing recreational areas. Map Information
Note: Bicycles prohibited in the wilderness. Bicycles allowed only on the first 1.3 miles of the trail to Wilderness Boundary
See Bicycle Restriction: Red Rock Country under Forest Orders for information about off-trail biking and permitted slickrock areas in the Sedona area.
This trail is recommended as part of a loop with Jordan and Brins Mesa trails, starting at the Jordan Trailhead. The main trailhead listed for this trail is not suitable for horse trailers.