Coconino National Forest Camping Near Sedona Offers Breathtaking Views

Coconino National Forest Camping Near Sedona, Arizona off Forest Road 525

We are currently enjoying Coconino National Forest camping near Sedona, Arizona. It’s heavenly with its stunning red rock views that change as the light changes throughout the day.

coconino national forest camping

My truck has been repaired and returned to me. I’m glad that’s over. Thursday morning I decided it was high time we got out of Hope, Arizona. It’s starting to get pretty hot around there. But, where to? I was looking for higher elevations, outstanding views, privacy, and peace, and quiet. Sedona seemed like the perfect place. There is a ton of boondocking around the Sedona area so I started reading about all of my options and decided on a plan A, B, and, C.

What I didn’t realize about the Coconino National Forest camping and boondocking locations I had selected was they were really just three connected forest service roads in the same area. What they call the Main Drag, Forest Road 525 was my first choice, Forest Road 525C (branches off 525) was my second, and Road 9549 (branches off 525C was my third.

Getting To Coconino National Forest Camping

The drive wasn’t particularly long and the further we traveled north, the more the terrain changed, and the prettier it got. We drove through the town of Cottonwood, southwest of Sedona into the Coconino National Forest. As we drove along I started to see A LOT of RVs out in the desert. It looked so crowded but I decided to check it out because I was planning to drive several miles off the main road.

Forest Service Road 9549 looked too questionable to tow the trailer on so I opted out and I’m glad I did because I checked it out today with just the truck and I needed 4WD to get out. I continued on and finally at about the 12-mile mark we found an empty, level, pull-through spot with fabulous views with our names on it. We parked and got level then walked and took some pictures. It’s a beautiful site with views of the red mesas in the distance.

I’ve been dreaming about this view.

Finding a Site

We turned off the paved road and onto a red dirt road. The road wasn’t too bad but there was some wash-boarding and it was very dry and dusty. We continued in and saw camper after camper tucked into tiny spots along the dusty main road. I could have set up in a communal site with several other rigs but I’m just not a communal kind of girl and I wanted my own little site with a view so we kept driving… and driving. I get a little nervous wondering if we’ll get stuck and not have a place to turn around. I always check these places out using google maps satellite images before I choose where to go.

Forest Road 525
I think Murphy stopped to admire the view too.

Breathtaking Views

This afternoon we unhitched and went scouting to see if there might be other sites off the main roads and away from the dust but it’s just too crowded and it’s Friday making the crowds even bigger. It also just occurred to me that it’s spring break. The triple whammy of camping crowds. We headed out exploring and ended up in Sedona. I don’t think there’s a place in Sedona that doesn’t have a spectacular view. Even the gas station where we filled up had a stunning view.

We drove Red Rock Loop which also has incredible views. There are a few places to pull over and a couple of hiking areas along the drive.

Red Rock Loop

After we finished the drive we headed south to Cottonwood and picked up groceries, and propane. It’s about 10 degrees cooler than yesterday and that’s a relief. It was 90 degrees in the trailer after we arrived yesterday. It’s only 79 degrees right now and there is a nice breeze.

We had some rain showers just after sun-up this morning.

You can find more detailed information about my stay off Forest Road 525 in my post, WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT BOONDOCKING NEAR SEDONA.

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7 thoughts on “Coconino National Forest Camping Near Sedona Offers Breathtaking Views”

  1. Pingback: Your Complete Arizona Camping and Boondocking Guide - She Can RV

  2. Oh yay! I am so happy you are enjoying yourself in Sedona. It sounds perfect. I love the view of red rocks and as always, your photos are just beautiful!!! Thanks so much for sharing them with us!

    1. juley.torkomian

      Thanks Karen!
      It’s nice to just sit in one spot and relax for a while. We are practicing our conservation skills here. It’s my 4th day here and I finally had to pull out the generator but only because I needed ice for my protien shakes. We’ve been managing on solar alone and doing well.
      Juley

  3. Hot air balloons are icing on the cake. Can’t imagine better than that. I’d like Murphy, he must be a good travel mate. I’m glad you are there for awhile.

    1. juley.torkomian

      The balloons were back this morning. I can’t get a good picture because of the morning sun but I keep trying. Murphy is the best camping buddy.
      Juley

  4. So happy the truck is back and all is well. Two years ago this week I was sitting in a lawn chair in a wonderful camp site off of 525 looking at those same beautiful red views. I had just bought my 4runner and before buying the Casita I decided to take 3 weeks to wander Arizona to make certain I REALLY wanted to spend my savings on a travel trailer. I wanted to see the red rocks of Sedona more than anything so when I arrived there I found a spot of my own to pull off to have a picnic. Spent all afternoon there, watched a storm blowing in from the west. The sky was a vivid blue with white billowing clouds that were blown away by the dark ones. But only a few sprinkles fell on me. I saw the many rigs, tents, ATV tours and rigs being towed slowly by just looking for that perfect spot that you have. I am very happy you found that great spot to have those peaceful contented moments. I hope you are able to stay awhile.
    I hope to be there myself next year.

    My dads 100th birthday is next week so I am the house cleaner/party planner. He is so excited and there is no place I’d rather be than here getting ready for a socially distanced, mask wearing, family only party.
    Glenda

    1. juley.torkomian

      Glenda,
      First Happy Birthday to your dad! Enjoy that milestone birthday.
      It’s absolutely gorgeous up here. This morning we hitched up and readjusted the trailer for some afternoon shade and set up camp for the duration (however long that is).
      Your memories of this place make me happy. I’m looking forward to hearing about your next trip here.
      I watched half a dozen hot air balloons drifting with the air currents this morning. Murphy growled at them.
      Juley

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