Devil’s Bridge and Vultee Arch with Friends

Cottonwood, AZ

During three previous winter stays in Cortez, FL (near Bradenton), we have become good friends with David and Karen, owners of a lot in the park where we stay.  We really enjoy spending time with David and Karen but, let’s be honest, the real reason we hang around with them is to enjoy time with their dog, Cody.  Cody loves to sit on Pam’s lap and enjoy her undivided attention (OK, the treats he receives may influence his behavior a bit).  So we were pleased when we learned that they would be coming out west this spring.  They have a beautiful fifth wheel on their site in Cortez but have a small Casita that they use for travel.  We met up with them just outside of Sedona and enjoyed a day of hiking together.

Cody and the treat lady


The five of us piled into our Jeep and set out for two short hikes, both on Vultee Arch Road.  The road is unpaved and requires a high clearance, four-wheel drive vehicle to reach the trailheads.  The first stop was at Devil’s Bridge, about a mile and a half down the road.   If you don’t have a four-wheel drive vehicle, you can park at the end of the road and hike to the trailhead, something many people must have done as there were more hikers than cars in the small parking area.

Three veteran hikers head up the trail


This is a short hike, less than a mile, but there are some steep rocks to climb.

Look who is leading the charge!

The hike leader waits for the rest of the group

John, Cody, Pam, David, and Karen

Karen, Cody, and David out on Devil’s Bridge

The bridge from below

After enjoying the view at Devil’s Bridge, we returned to the Jeep and continued up the Vultee Arch Road for another three miles to where it ends.  The road is pretty rough so not many people come this far to hike.  At the end of the road we picked up the trail for a mile and a half hike out to Vultee Arch.

Vultee Arch from a distance

A zoom of the arch

Behind us as we viewed the arch was a large rock outcrop.  Look closely at the photo below and you can see a small plaque on the rock in the center of the picture.

The plaque is dedicated to Jerry and Sylvia Vultee, who died in a plane crash here in 1933.

A bit of color along the trail

After a long day of hiking, the group retired to a local coffee shop for some refreshment.  One of the hikers was especially tired from all the walking and fell asleep on the table.

We are now about to head into Utah for a visit to the little town of Bluff in the four corners section of the state.  David, Karen, and Cody will stay a few more days in the Sedona area before joining us at Cadillac RV Park in Bluff.  There is much to see in this area and we look forward to them joining us for a few adventures.

More on that later . . .

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43 Responses to Devil’s Bridge and Vultee Arch with Friends

  1. Nancy says:

    The Devils bridge looks great! Beautiful photos of the hike. Cody is just too precious!

  2. To be surrounded by red rocks feels out worldly. I can imagine Cody’s joy when he saw Pam, the treat lady. Love that pick of a tired hiker, maybe you did not give him his own cup of coffee to perk him up!

  3. Laurel says:

    Those are two very sweet hikes! You guys are making our list very long. 🙂 Cody is adorable — love the photo of him with Pam, and also sleeping on the table. Oh goodie, you guys are going to Bluff, one of our favorite places! We’re planning to head back there this fall, so can’t wait to see what you discover.

    • placestheygo says:

      Laurel, we have a long list of things to show our friends. We were here two years ago and had a wonderful time. As a matter of fact we did one of our hardest and longest hike in Bullet Canyon. You’ll have to check it out in our blog from 2013. This area is full of surprises.

      • Laurel says:

        Ha! I just went back and read your blog on the Bullet Canyon hike. Are you kidding me??? There is no way I could do that hike — I’m not brave enough. But darn, I sure would love to see that kiva and those pictographs. Thanks for the photo tour. 🙂

    • placestheygo says:

      Laurel, that hike in Bullet Canyon was my all time favorite hike anywhere. Yes, it was a little crazy but just that section that was boulder clogged. Coming out was the first time I actually got a little scared because we couldn’t find the path with boulders small enough for us to get over. But we finally did:) The Perfect Kiva area was so amazing!!! You just felt like you could feel the presents of those who lived there. There was still so much evidence around from their activities. I am debating about returning before we leave.

  4. explorvistas says:

    Nothing better than seeing a dog experience a good hike! 🙂

  5. Sherry says:

    Great looking hikes. Makes me seriously wish I had a jeep. But how would I carry my kayaks? Love the pictures of Cody. What a cutie. I’d make friends with his owners too! 🙂 That’s a great one the three of them on Devil’s Bridge and love that arch. So glad you are getting to see the desert in bloom so I can too. Thanks!

    • placestheygo says:

      Thanks, Sherry! It was a fun day with perfect weather. You need to get one of those racks that they designed to carry two kayaks and two bikes on the back of your MH. Then, you can get a Jeep:)

      • Sherry says:

        I’ve never seen such a rack but would love to. Although all the racks I’ve seen are for shorter kayaks than we have but it I could figure out how to do it, it’s a great idea. I you know who carries those racks, let me know.

  6. I remember we did a loop hike out that road, that was a very rough road! Cody sure is a cutie, I can see why you are enamored!

    • placestheygo says:

      Oh, boy, Lisa, is that ever rough. I was thrilled to be in the back seat as John negotiated the best way through. That’s why there was only two cars at the Vultee Arch trailhead. Cody is a special little guy and he never barks:)

  7. Jim and Barb says:

    Devils Bridge looks like a nice hike and cool formation. Great job with the pictures!

  8. Janna says:

    We are looking forward to getting to Utah–and that pooch is adorable!!

  9. Gay says:

    I can’t wait….just the sight of those beautiful arches and red rock formations makes my heart beat faster!

  10. Mary says:

    That looks like a great fun place, and so beautiful.

  11. pmbweaver says:

    Gorgeous header!

    Cody is quite the hiker.

    Two gorgeous hikes. I love any arch. We miss Utah. We may have to look at returning in a year or so. Love the red rock!

    • placestheygo says:

      Thanks, Marsha! Cody did an amazing job trooping along for all five miles. We are very excited to be back in Utah:) There will be lots of red rocks and arches to come:)

  12. Jodee Gravel says:

    Looks like there’s competition for the title of nimble hiker! Devil’s Bridge must not be as narrow as it looks – I like the pic from the bottom best 🙂 How fun that you are able to share these spots with friends, it looks like you’re having a great time. Glad to see there are dog friendly trails in the area, it would have been a shame for Pam to miss the hike while back at camp with Cody.

  13. LuAnn says:

    Love those two hikes! I think these were two of the first hikes we did when we moved to Sedona. Great photos! Love that shot of Cody at Starbucks! And that header photo is very cool. 🙂

    • placestheygo says:

      We thought of you two often as the Pink Jeeps were everywhere:) We could have used one of those tricked out jeeps as we made our way back that road to the Vultee Arch. But John did a great job getting us back there.

      • LuAnn says:

        That is such a beautiful area. One day we will all have to converge on Sedona at the same time. Perhaps there will still be a few hikes that we can show you two.

  14. Cody sure is a cutie!
    If you get a chance while you’re in the Bluff area, take a drive to Muley Point, at the top of the Moki Dugway. We stayed there a few nights. Best boondocking site ever! There are no formal trails but you can hike all around the rim. The views are spectacular.

    • placestheygo says:

      Thanks, Jim and Gayle! We have been out there on our prior visit to the area. We were here two years ago and drove the Moki Dugway many times to get to hikes up that way. We did take the road to the point to check it out. That is on our list for our friends this week:) So glad you shared.

  15. Suzanne says:

    You and your red rocks are killing me. Wanna trade places for a couple of days? 😉

    Suzanne (Restless in San Diego)

  16. wiandflbev says:

    Sedona is one of our favorite places. Years ago, when we lived in California, we would hop over there all the time. Brought me back to some great memories. Love your photography and story telling.

  17. Sheila says:

    Pam, I hope your leg is doing okay after the last several hikes. You guys put us to shame; the hikes appear to be very difficult, but interesting and gorgeous. We love Dead Horse Ranch and the Cottonwood area. We have camped there many times, but not recently. I would love to be there during their Valley Verde Birding festival, which takes place in late April! Rest your leg, enjoy your days and safe travels to your next destination.

    • placestheygo says:

      Thanks so much, Sheila:) My leg has returned to its old form this past week!! I still have a little numbness but no weakness in the muscles. It is so much easier to hike with two strong legs:) I appreciate your concern and thoughts:)

  18. Erin says:

    Nice … I love arches … Poor Cody; pooped but I bet he had a great time hiking with you guys.

    • placestheygo says:

      Cody is certainly getting a workout. He is becoming a real hiker. I hope you caught the photos on Facebook where he needed a little ride in between his two hikes.

  19. rommel says:

    A nice place to die? Oooops … But seriously, I’d be happy to die here. Beautfiul views. And I always love it when John writes. 😉

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