Sedona Hiking Trails ~ Soldiers Pass
This trail gives you a chance to walk up to Devil’s Kitchen Sinkhole, walk to the Seven Sacred Pools, and have a chance to see the arches, caves and vistas of Brin’s Mesa. This hike delivers plant diversity and examples of our Earth’s ever changing landscape.
Soldiers Pass Trail is aptly named after the soldiers in the mid-1800’s who used this trail to camp along on their way to and from Fort Verde, now Camp Verde. As you hike, you cross several dry river beds called “arroyos.” About ¼ mile into the hike you come upon Devil’s Kitchen Sinkhole. As with all sinkholes, water erodes the rock under the top crust and the earth finally buckles into the sinkhole. If you look down into Devil’s Kitchen Sinkhole you will see a huge rock that fell off in 1989 during a California earthquake. This rock is affectionately called the “Grand Piano” by local hikers. If you walk around the sinkhole you will also see fissures in the earth’s crust where eventually the land will break off and fall.
Eventually you come to the Seven Sacred Pools. During the dry season only small amounts of water are present in each of the seven pools. Depending on the time of year you may see tadpoles or frogs. Butterflies and water bugs often skim the surface of these small biologically diverse pools. During rainy season, the Seven Sacred Pools can be completely covered by water falling down the rock faces making for spectacular waterfalls. When standing in the acoustically perfect watershed of the Seven Sacred Pools, consider that indigenous people may have used this area as a gathering place.
This trail offers some of the best examples of high desert plants, some of which are not people or animal friendly as they have spikes and thorns! Be careful where you hike and what you touch.
At Seven Sacred Pools, you can turn around, or hike farther afield. If you do hike farther, you head into the Red Rock Secret Mountain Wilderness, past Soldiers Pass Arches, and on to Brin’s Mesa Trail; which at its highest point at slightly over 5000 feet. This portion of the hike allows hikers fabulous views of Steamboat Rock, Mormon Canyon, Wilson Mountain, and Soldiers Pass.
Consider the time of day when you are hiking, so you have plenty of time to hike out before it gets dark. Nighttime and darkness come quickly to the Sedona wilderness. Upon completion of Brin’s Mesa Trail you will take Cibola Pass Trail and the Jordan Trail back to Soldiers Pass Trail and the parking lot. Be on the lookout for signs for these trails!
Now rest your feet at El Portal Sedona Hotel, a AAA Four Diamond hotel. Relax in our private courtyard or in the beautiful great room!