Southwest

Sedona Red Rock Pass vs America the Beautiful – Which One?

May 5, 2023

Southwest

Sedona Red Rock Pass vs America the Beautiful – Which One?

May 5, 2023

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Nestled in the heart of Arizona, Sedona is a magical destination renowned for its stunning red rock formations and captivating landscapes. A haven for outdoor enthusiasts and spiritual seekers alike, Sedona offers diverse activities, from hiking and mountain biking to meditation and energy vortex tours. Choosing the right pass is crucial for ensuring you make the most of your time in this picturesque corner of the American Southwest! This blog will look at the Sedona Red Rock Pass versus America the Beautiful Pass, helping you make an informed decision based on your unique travel plans. 

As an Arizona native and a Sedona frequent flier, I’m pulling from my experience to help you have the best trip possible! Let’s dive in.

đź“Ś Save this to Pinterest!

Disclaimer: Hey explorer! This post contains affiliate links which means I earn a small percentage of each purchase made through my links. I only ever recommend products I believe in and appreciate your support if you decide to use my links—thank you!

What is a Sedona Red Rock Pass?

The Red Rock Pass is specifically designed to provide access to the breathtakingly beautiful Red Rock Country within Coconino National Forest. Additionally, this pass is a vital funding source for maintaining and conserving these awe-inspiring landscapes.

The Sedona Red Rock Pass offers several options to cater to different needs, which we’ll discuss below!

Several Red Rock Passes are available, including daily, weekly, and annual passes. Prices vary depending on the length of your visit and the areas you plan to explore. For example, a daily pass costs $5, a weekly pass costs $15, and an annual pass costs $20. 

It’s important to note that some of Sedona’s easy hiking trails and more Instagrammable hiking trails require a red rock pass to access, so purchase the appropriate pass before setting out on your hike.

Where to Buy Red Rock Passes

You can purchase Red Rock Passes at several locations throughout Sedona, including the Sedona Visitor Center, the Red Rock Ranger District Visitor Center, and automated fee machines at certain trailheads and parking lots. Passes can also be purchased online through the U.S. Forest Service website.

Benefits of the Red Rock Pass

So why should you get a Red Rock Pass? Let’s quickly discuss some of the benefits:

  • It’s ideal for short-term visitors exploring Red Rock Country in a limited timeframe.
  • The pass is a cost-effective option for those planning multiple visits within a year.
  • Your purchase directly supports the maintenance and conservation efforts of Red Rock Country, ensuring the preservation of its natural beauty for future generations.

While the Sedona Red Rock Pass has its benefits, there are some limitations to buying a Red Rock Pass every time you want to hike:

  • The pass is only valid for Red Rock Country in Coconino National Forest.
  • It does not grant access to other national parks or recreation areas.

Now let’s talk about my favorite option and the only pass I use in Sedona: America the Beautiful Pass.

America the Beautiful Pass

America the Beautiful Pass is an all-inclusive pass that grants access to over 2,000 national parks, forests, wildlife refuges, and other federal recreation sites across the United States, including Sedona’s Red Rock Country. 

Designed for avid travelers and outdoor enthusiasts, the pass covers entrance fees, standard amenity fees, and day-use fees at a wide range of sites managed by various federal agencies, such as the National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Bureau of Reclamation.

This versatile pass is available as an annual option, costing $80. Two people can sign the pass for added convenience, making it a fantastic option for couples or friends traveling together. You’d love it for spending 3 days in Sedona, AZ!

Where to Buy an American the Beautiful Pass

You can click here to check out the available passes and snag yourself an America the Beautiful Pass! Purchasing one from a retailer like REI makes renewing your pass easy and convenient. 

Plus, when you purchase a pass on REI, your purchase will count towards your annual dividends— which I highly recommend doing so you can benefit from your purchase!

Please note that the pass is non-transferable and valid for one year from the month of purchase. Additionally, there are specific passes tailored to seniors, military personnel, individuals with disabilities, and 4th graders in the U.S., providing discounted or free access to federal recreation sites.

Benefits of America the Beautiful Pass

Personally, I recommend buying an America the Beautiful Pass over a Sedona Red Rock pass. Let’s discuss the benefits when you go this route:

  • It’s ideal for travelers visiting multiple national parks and federal recreation sites, providing unlimited yearly access.
  • The pass covers entry to Red Rock Country and other federal sites nationwide, offering fantastic value for avid explorers.
  • Senior and Access passes are available at discounted prices or for free to eligible individuals, making it an inclusive option for various age groups and abilities.
  • Purchasing this pass supports conservation efforts across the country, contributing to preserving America’s diverse natural heritage.

Just like any pass, the America the Beautiful Pass has its limitations as well:

  • The upfront cost is higher than the Red Rock Pass, which may only suit some budgets.
  • There may be more cost-effective options for visitors planning a Sedona-only trip.

Sedona is home to several stunning hiking trails requiring a red rock pass. And now that you know you can snag an America the Beautiful Pass instead, here are just a few of the most popular hiking trails you can use it on:

Cathedral Rock Trail: This challenging hike rewards visitors with stunning views of Cathedral Rock and the surrounding area. The trailhead is on Back O’ Beyond Road, and visitors must have a red rock pass to park in the parking lot.

Bell Rock Vortex: This relatively easy hike takes visitors past the iconic Bell Rock formation. The trailhead is located on Bell Rock Boulevard, and visitors must have a red rock pass to park in the parking lot.

Devil’s Bridge Trail: This moderate hiking trail leads visitors to one of Sedona’s largest natural sandstone arches. The trailhead is at the Dry Creek Road parking lot, and visitors must have a red rock pass to park there.

Soldier Pass Trail: This scenic hiking trail takes visitors through beautiful red rock formations and past the Devil’s Kitchen sinkhole. The trailhead is located at the Soldier Pass Road parking lot, and visitors must have a red rock pass to park there.

Sedona Red Rock Pass vs American the Beautiful Pass — Choosing the Right One

When selecting the best pass for your needs, consider the following factors:

  • The duration of your stay in Sedona and surrounding areas.
  • Your travel plans, including any national parks or recreation sites you intend to visit.
  • Your budget and priorities as a traveler.

Armed with this information, you can make an informed decision that best suits your travel plans and preferences. But when visiting Sedona, you need to consider which hiking trails you’ll be visiting. 

That will help you determine what pass to get when considering Sedona Red Rock Pass versus America the Beautiful Pass!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

In this section, we’ll address some common questions related to the Sedona Red Rock Pass versus America the Beautiful Pass to help clarify any uncertainties you may have.

Can I use the America the Beautiful Pass at Red Rocks?

Yes, you can use the America the Beautiful Pass at Red Rock Country in Sedona. The pass covers entrance, standard amenity, and day-use fees for Red Rock Country, managed by the Coconino National Forest.

By using America the Beautiful Pass, you’ll have access to Sedona’s Red Rock Country and over 2,000 national parks and federal recreation sites across the United States.

Can I use the America the Beautiful Pass in Sedona?

Yes, you can use the America the Beautiful Pass in Sedona, specifically in the Red Rock Country, which is part of the Coconino National Forest. The pass covers the area’s entrance fees, standard amenity fees, and day-use fees.

In addition to granting access to Sedona’s Red Rock Country, America the Beautiful Pass provides entry to more than 2,000 national parks and federal recreation sites across the United States, making it a versatile and valuable option for those who love exploring the great outdoors.

What is the Red Rock Pass good for?

The Red Rock Pass is good for visitors coming to Sedona for a short time. The pass covers entrance fees, standard amenity fees, and day-use fees at various trailheads, picnic areas, and recreation sites within Red Rock Country.

Here’s what the Red Rock Pass is beneficial for:

  1. Short-term visitors: If your trip to Sedona is limited in duration and you only plan to explore the Red Rock Country, the pass offers an affordable option for accessing these areas.
  2. Frequent visits within a year: The pass is a cost-effective solution for those planning multiple visits to Red Rock Country within a year. With daily, weekly, and annual pass options, you can choose the one that best fits your needs.
  3. Supporting conservation efforts: Purchasing a Red Rock Pass directly supports the maintenance, preservation, and conservation efforts of the Red Rock Country in Coconino National Forest. This ensures the continued protection of its natural beauty for future generations to enjoy.

Please note that the Red Rock Pass is valid only for Red Rock Country in Coconino National Forest and does not grant access to other national parks or recreation areas.

Do you need a Red Rock Pass for Devil’s Bridge?

Yes, you need a Red Rock Pass when visiting Devil’s Bridge in Sedona, as it is located within the Red Rock Country of Coconino National Forest. The pass covers day-use fees at the trailhead parking area for Devil’s Bridge, one of the most popular hiking destinations in Sedona.

By purchasing a Red Rock Pass, you are not only complying with the regulations but also contributing to the maintenance and conservation efforts in the area. Remember to display your pass prominently on your vehicle’s dashboard or rearview mirror when parked at the trailhead.

Do you need to buy a parking pass for Red Rocks?

Yes, you need to buy a parking pass when visiting Sedona’s Red Rock Country, which includes popular sites like Devil’s Bridge, Cathedral Rock, and Bell Rock. The Red Rock Pass, also known as a parking pass, covers day-use fees for parking at most trailheads, picnic areas, and recreation sites within the Red Rock Country of Coconino National Forest.

Alternatively, if you have America the Beautiful Pass, it will also cover parking and day-use fees in Red Rock Country. Display your pass prominently on your vehicle’s dashboard or rearview mirror when parked at trailheads or other recreation sites to comply with regulations and help support ongoing maintenance and conservation efforts in the area.

Final Thoughts on Sedona Red Rock Pass vs American the Beautiful Pass

There are a lot of factors to think about when considering the Sedona Red Rock Pass versus America the Beautiful. Both offer incredible opportunities to experience the majestic beauty of Sedona’s landscapes.

By choosing the right pass for your needs, you can embark on a memorable adventure that will leave you with a deep appreciation for the natural wonders of this enchanting destination. So, lace up your hiking boots, pack your camera, and get ready to explore the extraordinary splendor of Sedona and beyond.

And while you’re planning your trip, check out these other guides I have:

Nestled in the heart of Arizona, Sedona is a magical destination renowned for its stunning red rock formations and captivating landscapes. A haven for outdoor enthusiasts and spiritual seekers alike, Sedona offers diverse activities, from hiking and mountain biking to meditation and energy vortex tours. Choosing the right pass is crucial for ensuring you make the most of your time in this picturesque corner of the American Southwest! This blog will look at the Sedona Red Rock Pass versus America the Beautiful Pass, helping you make an informed decision based on your unique travel plans. 

As an Arizona native and a Sedona frequent flier, I’m pulling from my experience to help you have the best trip possible! Let’s dive in.

đź“Ś Save this to Pinterest!

Disclaimer: Hey explorer! This post contains affiliate links which means I earn a small percentage of each purchase made through my links. I only ever recommend products I believe in and appreciate your support if you decide to use my links—thank you!

What is a Sedona Red Rock Pass?

The Red Rock Pass is specifically designed to provide access to the breathtakingly beautiful Red Rock Country within Coconino National Forest. Additionally, this pass is a vital funding source for maintaining and conserving these awe-inspiring landscapes.

The Sedona Red Rock Pass offers several options to cater to different needs, which we’ll discuss below!

Several Red Rock Passes are available, including daily, weekly, and annual passes. Prices vary depending on the length of your visit and the areas you plan to explore. For example, a daily pass costs $5, a weekly pass costs $15, and an annual pass costs $20. 

It’s important to note that some of Sedona’s easy hiking trails and more Instagrammable hiking trails require a red rock pass to access, so purchase the appropriate pass before setting out on your hike.

Where to Buy Red Rock Passes

You can purchase Red Rock Passes at several locations throughout Sedona, including the Sedona Visitor Center, the Red Rock Ranger District Visitor Center, and automated fee machines at certain trailheads and parking lots. Passes can also be purchased online through the U.S. Forest Service website.

Benefits of the Red Rock Pass

So why should you get a Red Rock Pass? Let’s quickly discuss some of the benefits:

  • It’s ideal for short-term visitors exploring Red Rock Country in a limited timeframe.
  • The pass is a cost-effective option for those planning multiple visits within a year.
  • Your purchase directly supports the maintenance and conservation efforts of Red Rock Country, ensuring the preservation of its natural beauty for future generations.

While the Sedona Red Rock Pass has its benefits, there are some limitations to buying a Red Rock Pass every time you want to hike:

  • The pass is only valid for Red Rock Country in Coconino National Forest.
  • It does not grant access to other national parks or recreation areas.

Now let’s talk about my favorite option and the only pass I use in Sedona: America the Beautiful Pass.

America the Beautiful Pass

America the Beautiful Pass is an all-inclusive pass that grants access to over 2,000 national parks, forests, wildlife refuges, and other federal recreation sites across the United States, including Sedona’s Red Rock Country. 

Designed for avid travelers and outdoor enthusiasts, the pass covers entrance fees, standard amenity fees, and day-use fees at a wide range of sites managed by various federal agencies, such as the National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Bureau of Reclamation.

This versatile pass is available as an annual option, costing $80. Two people can sign the pass for added convenience, making it a fantastic option for couples or friends traveling together. You’d love it for spending 3 days in Sedona, AZ!

Where to Buy an American the Beautiful Pass

You can click here to check out the available passes and snag yourself an America the Beautiful Pass! Purchasing one from a retailer like REI makes renewing your pass easy and convenient. 

Plus, when you purchase a pass on REI, your purchase will count towards your annual dividends— which I highly recommend doing so you can benefit from your purchase!

Please note that the pass is non-transferable and valid for one year from the month of purchase. Additionally, there are specific passes tailored to seniors, military personnel, individuals with disabilities, and 4th graders in the U.S., providing discounted or free access to federal recreation sites.

Benefits of America the Beautiful Pass

Personally, I recommend buying an America the Beautiful Pass over a Sedona Red Rock pass. Let’s discuss the benefits when you go this route:

  • It’s ideal for travelers visiting multiple national parks and federal recreation sites, providing unlimited yearly access.
  • The pass covers entry to Red Rock Country and other federal sites nationwide, offering fantastic value for avid explorers.
  • Senior and Access passes are available at discounted prices or for free to eligible individuals, making it an inclusive option for various age groups and abilities.
  • Purchasing this pass supports conservation efforts across the country, contributing to preserving America’s diverse natural heritage.

Just like any pass, the America the Beautiful Pass has its limitations as well:

  • The upfront cost is higher than the Red Rock Pass, which may only suit some budgets.
  • There may be more cost-effective options for visitors planning a Sedona-only trip.

Sedona is home to several stunning hiking trails requiring a red rock pass. And now that you know you can snag an America the Beautiful Pass instead, here are just a few of the most popular hiking trails you can use it on:

Cathedral Rock Trail: This challenging hike rewards visitors with stunning views of Cathedral Rock and the surrounding area. The trailhead is on Back O’ Beyond Road, and visitors must have a red rock pass to park in the parking lot.

Bell Rock Vortex: This relatively easy hike takes visitors past the iconic Bell Rock formation. The trailhead is located on Bell Rock Boulevard, and visitors must have a red rock pass to park in the parking lot.

Devil’s Bridge Trail: This moderate hiking trail leads visitors to one of Sedona’s largest natural sandstone arches. The trailhead is at the Dry Creek Road parking lot, and visitors must have a red rock pass to park there.

Soldier Pass Trail: This scenic hiking trail takes visitors through beautiful red rock formations and past the Devil’s Kitchen sinkhole. The trailhead is located at the Soldier Pass Road parking lot, and visitors must have a red rock pass to park there.

Sedona Red Rock Pass vs American the Beautiful Pass — Choosing the Right One

When selecting the best pass for your needs, consider the following factors:

  • The duration of your stay in Sedona and surrounding areas.
  • Your travel plans, including any national parks or recreation sites you intend to visit.
  • Your budget and priorities as a traveler.

Armed with this information, you can make an informed decision that best suits your travel plans and preferences. But when visiting Sedona, you need to consider which hiking trails you’ll be visiting. 

That will help you determine what pass to get when considering Sedona Red Rock Pass versus America the Beautiful Pass!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

In this section, we’ll address some common questions related to the Sedona Red Rock Pass versus America the Beautiful Pass to help clarify any uncertainties you may have.

Can I use the America the Beautiful Pass at Red Rocks?

Yes, you can use the America the Beautiful Pass at Red Rock Country in Sedona. The pass covers entrance, standard amenity, and day-use fees for Red Rock Country, managed by the Coconino National Forest.

By using America the Beautiful Pass, you’ll have access to Sedona’s Red Rock Country and over 2,000 national parks and federal recreation sites across the United States.

Can I use the America the Beautiful Pass in Sedona?

Yes, you can use the America the Beautiful Pass in Sedona, specifically in the Red Rock Country, which is part of the Coconino National Forest. The pass covers the area’s entrance fees, standard amenity fees, and day-use fees.

In addition to granting access to Sedona’s Red Rock Country, America the Beautiful Pass provides entry to more than 2,000 national parks and federal recreation sites across the United States, making it a versatile and valuable option for those who love exploring the great outdoors.

What is the Red Rock Pass good for?

The Red Rock Pass is good for visitors coming to Sedona for a short time. The pass covers entrance fees, standard amenity fees, and day-use fees at various trailheads, picnic areas, and recreation sites within Red Rock Country.

Here’s what the Red Rock Pass is beneficial for:

  1. Short-term visitors: If your trip to Sedona is limited in duration and you only plan to explore the Red Rock Country, the pass offers an affordable option for accessing these areas.
  2. Frequent visits within a year: The pass is a cost-effective solution for those planning multiple visits to Red Rock Country within a year. With daily, weekly, and annual pass options, you can choose the one that best fits your needs.
  3. Supporting conservation efforts: Purchasing a Red Rock Pass directly supports the maintenance, preservation, and conservation efforts of the Red Rock Country in Coconino National Forest. This ensures the continued protection of its natural beauty for future generations to enjoy.

Please note that the Red Rock Pass is valid only for Red Rock Country in Coconino National Forest and does not grant access to other national parks or recreation areas.

Do you need a Red Rock Pass for Devil’s Bridge?

Yes, you need a Red Rock Pass when visiting Devil’s Bridge in Sedona, as it is located within the Red Rock Country of Coconino National Forest. The pass covers day-use fees at the trailhead parking area for Devil’s Bridge, one of the most popular hiking destinations in Sedona.

By purchasing a Red Rock Pass, you are not only complying with the regulations but also contributing to the maintenance and conservation efforts in the area. Remember to display your pass prominently on your vehicle’s dashboard or rearview mirror when parked at the trailhead.

Do you need to buy a parking pass for Red Rocks?

Yes, you need to buy a parking pass when visiting Sedona’s Red Rock Country, which includes popular sites like Devil’s Bridge, Cathedral Rock, and Bell Rock. The Red Rock Pass, also known as a parking pass, covers day-use fees for parking at most trailheads, picnic areas, and recreation sites within the Red Rock Country of Coconino National Forest.

Alternatively, if you have America the Beautiful Pass, it will also cover parking and day-use fees in Red Rock Country. Display your pass prominently on your vehicle’s dashboard or rearview mirror when parked at trailheads or other recreation sites to comply with regulations and help support ongoing maintenance and conservation efforts in the area.

Final Thoughts on Sedona Red Rock Pass vs American the Beautiful Pass

There are a lot of factors to think about when considering the Sedona Red Rock Pass versus America the Beautiful. Both offer incredible opportunities to experience the majestic beauty of Sedona’s landscapes.

By choosing the right pass for your needs, you can embark on a memorable adventure that will leave you with a deep appreciation for the natural wonders of this enchanting destination. So, lace up your hiking boots, pack your camera, and get ready to explore the extraordinary splendor of Sedona and beyond.

And while you’re planning your trip, check out these other guides I have:

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