Red Rock Crossing
Cathedral Rock rises above Oak Creek’s clear water rippling over red sandstone into placid pools. Here is the classic photo of Sedona and a wonderful opportunity to explore your creativity. During warm months, this location is very popular, so visit in early spring or late summer to avoid crowds. Then look for reflection pools a few hundred feet downstream from the parking area, and the quaint, crescent-shaped falls about a half-mile upstream in a wooded area. Plan to finish your day at Red Rock Crossing with breathtaking photography from the “golden hour” through sunset.
Drive west from Sedona on State Route 89A to the stoplight near the high school, and turn left (south) onto Upper Red Rock Loop Road. At the bottom of the hill (1.8 miles), turn left onto Chavez Ranch Road, cross over the small bridge, immediately turn right, and after about a half mile turn left into Crescent Moon Picnic Area.
Red Rock State Park. Entrance fee is not covered by Red Rock Pass. Alternative access to the park is about 4.6 miles from the Village of Oak Creek, near the end of Verde Valley School Road, with a dirt parking lot on the left.
A vast panorama of red rocks can easily be photographed from the Midgley Bridge turnout. Mitten Ridge to the east includes the distinctive Giant’s Thumb with Munds Mountain in the background. From Sedona, drive one mile up Oak Creek Canyon, and turn left immediately after crossing the bridge.
This valley of Arizona cypress and piñon trees offers engaging views of surrounding cliffs and buttes. From the intersection of State 89A and State 179, drive west for 1.2 miles and turn right onto Soldiers Pass Road. After 2.7 miles turn right onto Rim Shadows Drive, go straight a quarter-mile, and turn left into the gated parking area. The gate is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.