Bear Mountain Trail is a 4.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Sedona, Arizona that features beautiful wild flowers and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
4.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,975 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

scramble

no shade

From the "Y" roundabout (the intersection of Highway 179 and Highway 89A), drive west on Highway 89A about 3 miles. Turn right on Dry Creek Road. Stay on Dry Creek Road about 3 miles to the end and a stop sign. Turn left on Boynton Pass Road and proceed about 1 1/2 miles to a stop sign. Turn left, continuing on Boynton Pass Road. The trailhead is the second trailhead on the left side, about 1 3/4 miles from the stop sign. The trailhead is across the road from the parking area

hiking
12 hours ago

My friend and I did this hike on Saturday (10/13). We started our trek around 10 am and arrived back at the trailhead close to 1 pm (even though it says on the trail sign that it takes 5 hours to complete).

We lucked out that morning with just a few clouds in the sky and a pleasant temperature of around 65 degrees.

However, the weather changed quite drastically as we reached the summit, and it rained for the duration of our descent. We were actually the very last people on the mountain, as everyone else either started early or turned back before the storm closed in. This could have been a somewhat treacherous trek down with the amount of exposure and slick rock we had to traverse, but we managed to make it down unharmed, as we were patient and took our time.

We were absolutely SOAKED once we got back to our vehicle, but it was well worth it! This is definitely quite the challenging hike, as it is not just a straight up incline to the top, but takes you on a roller coaster ride of inclines and descents that really wears you down as the trail progresses.

This is a phenomenal hike that provides you with magnificent views of the Sedona valley the whole way up! I would highly recommend this trek for all experienced hikers who are looking for a challenge and a way to escape the crowds.

Tip: Make sure you pay the $5 park entrance fee at the lot across the street from the trail in order to enter the Red Rock State Park.

hiking
1 day ago

One of the best viewing hikes we’ve ever done near Sedona. Challenging yet some parts were easy. A few Rock scrambles and some incredible vistas to be seen from such a high elevation. It took us 5 hours and we stopped up top to eat our lunch. Greatly appreciated the white markers on the rocks.Amazing and be sure to pack lots of water. Not much shade on this hike . We started at 9:30 am and were happy to have some cloudy parts to the day. Enjoy!

1 day ago

It’s relatively easy to go off trail. Pay attention to the paint markers!

hiking
3 days ago

Awesome trail. Tricky in some spots as markers are not very clear. Breath taking view from the top makes it all worth it. Bring plenty of water to hydrate.

9 days ago

nice trail, lots of great views all along the trail plus variability in the terrain. takes longer than you think - the highest point you see from the trailhead is only half the distance and half the altitude of the mountain.

hiking
13 days ago

glad we did it, it was beautiful

hiking
18 days ago

Difficult but incredibly rewarding trail. We did this at the end of September on a mid-80s day and it took us 4.25 hours with several stops for peanut butter sandwiches and shade sitting. We got off the trail momentarily a few times, so just keep your eyes peeled for the white painted chevrons. Like many other reviewers have said, there are a few heartbreaking false summits but they’re just part of the adventure :)

hiking
1 month ago

Loved it. Well marked and satisfying climb. I started about 25 minutes after sunrise — would have been worth getting up even earlier to avoid some of the heat on the way back down.

hiking
1 month ago

Brutal on the way down if you don’t start early, but totally worth it. Views are like no other! Absolutely stunning. Bring lots of water and start early!

Strongly recommend to start this trail early morning at Sunrise. Make sure you take lots of water with you and a good healthy energy/protein bar. It takes 5h minimum to finish this trail. Do not take an older dog with you on this trail!!!! do not take your dog in noon or afternoon hours ( too hot!!!!)

hiking
1 month ago

Just as incredible as I imagined. The false peaks were hilarious - I recommend going in with a mindset of just keep trucking no matter what it looks like in front of you (I counted 4 false peaks). Those little white markers were a godsend - they were consistent all the way up and prevented me from getting off course, which could happen easily. The trail itself was relatively hard due to steepness and being exposed to the sun for the most part. I started 30 min after sunrise and it was getting hot on the way down. Views along the way and at the top are primo. Highly recommend.

1 month ago

Tricky climb but rewarding at the top.!

hiking
2 months ago

absolutely loved this Trail. A little more traffic than I thought it would have especially in July. Make sure you have plenty of water -there is no reliable water on the trail. I repeat- bring plenty of water, a cover for your head, and long sleeves. don't feel like I need to say it but make sure you bring sunscreen. The trail is pretty easy to follow there's one place within a mile up, go to your right although theTrail looks like it should go on the left-- that's the only hiccup

2 months ago

You think you’re at the top. You in fact are not.

hiking
2 months ago

Great workout! Love the elevation gain and the remarkable scenery from the trail. at top is only a hundred and eighty degree visibility. Brush and trees cover the top facing Sedona but you can see Thunder Mountain Through the trees if you work at it and scrape your legs up in the brush.

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful trail. Well marked just follow the white arrows on the rocks. It’s a workout but the views at the top are gorgeous!

2 months ago

feels a lot longer than 4-5 miles. amazing veiws of Sedona and Mingus and the surrounding area up towards the top. The trail itself it very beautiful and would be well worth the hike even without the views. It is more tiring than you would think given the distance, so plan accordingly

3 months ago

Went early and that helped with the heat. Very well marked trail.

3 months ago

Definitely bring lots of water, sunscreen and hat! Great views! Took us about 4 hrs round trip.

3 months ago

This hike was challenging but definitely worth it! There are a few false peaks and not much to see on the way up. But on the way down the views are worth it! Not much of a view at the top but it was fun to explore. I can’t wait to hike this again in the fall!

hiking
3 months ago

The final mile to half mile stretch is not worth going up. the difficulty is only rewarded with a mediocre view but the walk back does have alot of great views

3 months ago

Awesome trail!!!

3 months ago

Hard AF. Super hot. Little shade, but when you hit those shade patches take breaks in them. You think you’re nearing the end of the trail, your not. Just keep going. Great views, great workout, great trail. Take lots of water and Gatorade. The Gatorade saved me and my friend.

4 months ago

Beautiful, hard trail. Can be very hot and steep. Take lots of water and watch for snakes.

hiking
4 months ago

Holy cow! By far the hardest hike I've ever done (disclaimer, I don't typically do super serious hikes), but well worth it. I am a relatively able-bodied, 30 y/o woman and I solo hiked this in just under 5 hours. It was HARD! I took a leisurely pace and stopped frequently on the way up for water, shade, photos, and to reapply sunscreen. It took about 2.5 hours to get up; I spent about 45 minutes at the top; and 2 hours-ish to get back down. Don't let the false summits fool you—there are a few. You'll think you've made it but there's further to go until you literally can't go any further! I started at 6:45 am (about an 1.5 hours after sunrise) and the trail was full sun for about 20 minutes, then I caught a 30-minute or so section with sporadic shade. Other than that, the trail is almost entirely in the sun. I brought 2+ liters of water and drank the entire thing! I brought some snacks (which I told myself I couldn't eat until I reached the top =P). Definitely bring sunscreen, bug repellent (the flies mean business!), some wet wipes, blister tape, etc. For the nearly 5 hours that I was on the trail, I saw NO ONE! I lost the trail on a few occasions but noticed immediately—it would be hard to wander too far from the trail, it's well marked.

hiking
4 months ago

It's a hard hike in the dry season so bring plenty of water. There's little to no shade, but plenty of places to stop and rest. It's a big climb to the top, but every step is worth the views along the way.

4 months ago

Loved

hiking
4 months ago

Stunning views! Great work out. Trail well marked.
Don’t let the distance fool you. This trail feels much longer than 2.2 to the top, and there are several falso “summits” (not really summits but seriously deceiving).
Low traffic. Saw 6 people total in the entire hike.
The trail head is across the road from the parking lot.

hiking
4 months ago

All I can say is, wow! My husband and I completed this hike in just under four hours. We stopped a few times for water breaks and took a ten minute break at the top for some food. There are four separate climbs that can require some scrambling, but the views throughout and at the top are worth it! If you are looking for a hard workout and minimal traffic, this is the hike for you!

hiking
4 months ago

Holy schnikes this hike is HARD!! You can’t even see the mountain you’re climbing when you start. I didn’t realize how hard or how long it was until we were coming down/back. I am proud that I did it. I am able bodied and a medium level hiker I’d say. It took us about 5 hours. 3 hours up, 2 hours down. We took a lot of breaks. We packed sandwiches and snacks and brought about a gallon and a half of water and JUST had enough. I’d recommend packing extra water, sunscreen (you’ll need to re-apply), baby wipes, a towel and some athlete tape so I can tape my ankles on the way down!

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