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West Fork Oak Creek Trail

Intermediate
 4.4 (47) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

The most popular trail in the Coconino National Forest.


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Map Key

5.4

Miles

8.7

KM

95%

Runnable

5,537' 1,688 m

High

5,287' 1,612 m

Low

510' 155 m

Up

510' 156 m

Down

4%

Avg Grade (2°)

10%

Max Grade (6°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

No mechanized vehicles in Wilderness. It will be closed during times of high fire danger, usually in late June.
Day-use is $11 per vehicle (up to 5 people), walk-in, bicycle, bus: $2.00 per person. In lieu of this fee, the Big Three Pass or the Grand Annual Red Rock Pass will be accepted here.

Overview

It's easy to see why this is one of the most popular trails in the forest. It can be used year-round: the cool water is refreshing in the summer, changing leaves add vibrancy the beautiful canyon, winter drapes the and scape in snow and ice and spring breathes greenery and wildflowers into the landscape.

Description

A visit to this trail usually takes 2-3 hours round trip. There are a number of reasons why West Fork is the most popular trail in the Coconino National Forest. A pleasant little stream runs along the canyon floor and high cliffs rise above it. The trail is an easy stroll, but you have to cross the stream in a number of places. This usually involves negotiating a few stepping stones or taking some steps in shallow water.

The trail is marked for the first three miles; however, many runners continue beyond that. Eventually, the pathway ends and you'll be forced to run in the stream bed as you continue into the Secret Mountain/Red Rocks Wilderness. If you choose to travel all 14 miles from one end of the canyon to the other, plan to do a lot of wading and boulder hopping, and even some swimming.

No matter how long a run you plan to take here, you'll enjoy it best if you come at a time when the trail is least crowded. Mornings and weekdays are best, and better yet if they're in the off-season.

Contacts

Shared By:

Condor77 77 with improvements by Abe H and 2 others

Trail Ratings

  4.4 from 47 votes

#184

Overall
  4.4 from 47 votes
5 Star
53%
4 Star
36%
3 Star
6%
2 Star
2%
1 Star
2%
Recommended Route Rankings

#11

in Arizona

#184

Overall
131 Views Last Month
4,493 Since Mar 26, 2015
Intermediate

17%
2%
80%
0%
0%
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Photos

Tree hanging on the edge of the rock!
May 31, 2016 near Sedona, AZ
Looking at the canyon walls from Oak Creek.
Jun 23, 2016 near Sedona, AZ
Oak Creek
Jun 23, 2016 near Sedona, AZ
West Fork Trail
Mar 6, 2018 near Sedona, AZ
Red sandstone along West Fork Oak Creek.
Apr 1, 2015 near Sedona, AZ
Nice lunch spot.
Oct 18, 2015 near Sedona, AZ

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Check-Ins

Dec 26, 2017
Jason Wheat
$10 Fee! I’m not paying that just to walk a creek. Tourist trap!