April may be the best month to visit Sedona, Arizona. The temperatures are in the Goldilocks zone of not being too cold or too hot. Plus, there is very little precipitation, so the chances of being rained out of any activity are very low.
The red sandstone towers visible in all directions stand in stark contrast to the modern town you are in. After buying your frappuccino, you step out of the coffee shop into what looks like the setting of a cowboy movie.
Weather in April
The average high temperature in Sedona in April is 72°F (22°C). The average monthly precipitation is low, with only 1 inch (22mm). The conditions in April are excellent for any outdoor activity.
The weather during this month becomes as close to perfect as it can get. Warm enough for shorts and a t-shirt but not so hot that you are at risk of heatstroke if you exert yourself.
Combined with the fact that the amount of rain is very low during April, you are close to guaranteed to get ideal weather, in particular from mid to late April.
The further north you go in Arizona, the higher the elevation and, therefore, the cooler the temperatures. This means Sedona will be more comfortable when lower areas like Phoenix are sweltering hot.
- Sedona’s average high temperature in April: 72°F (22°C)
- Sedona’s average low temperature in April: 48°F (9°C)
Sedona’s April daily high average temperatures start in the high 60s and end in the mid-70s. For most people, this translates into the Goldilocks zone for the temperature. Not too hot and not too cold.
Perfect hiking weather: If you plan to be active, you will find the combination of pleasant April temperatures and low humidity ideal for high exertion without overheating.
Quote from a local: April weather in Sedona is fantastic, generally sunny with clear blue skies. However, it can also be anything from the last winter snowstorm to early summer heat with temps in the high 70s and sometimes even 80s in late April. Regardless, it’s one of the best times to be here.
Average Daily High Temperatures During April:
- Early April: 68°F (20°C)
- Mid-April: 72°F (22°C)
- Late April: 75°F (24°C)
Average Daily Low Temperatures During April
- Early April: 45°F (7°C)
- Mid-April 48°F (9°C)
- Late April 52° (11°C
Daily Temperature Variation
Mornings start cool at sunrise and warm up, with peak temperatures being in the mid-afternoon. In the desert, the temperatures drop pretty quickly once the sun goes down. Thus, be prepared and bring extra layers.
Average temps during a day in mid-April:
● 8 AM: 48°F (9°C)
● 12 PM: 66°F (19°C)
● 3 PM: 72°F (22°C)
Sedona will see an average of 5 days of precipitation during April, which is defined as a day with 1 mm or more. The chance of rain is highest at the beginning of the month at 12% and decreases to 7% by the end of the month.
Snow: Snow is uncommon, but sometimes a late winter storm in early April may happen.
The average total precipitation during April is 1” (25mm). This is less than half of the average rainfall, as is seen during March.
Tip: If you plan to visit during the winter season again, check out our article about Sedona in December [Weather, What to Wear]
Because Sedona is quite busy in April, you should make your reservations as soon as possible. Otherwise, you run the risk of not getting the rooms you like or paying much higher rates than expected. If you use booking.com (Sedona Hotel Deals), sort by price and rating to see the best deals.
What to Wear in April
The temperatures during this month in Sedona, Arizona will start moderately cool in the morning and warm up to pleasantly warm in the afternoon.
In April, you need to wear layers in Sedona as the temperatures change during the day. Pack a light jacket or a sweater, a windbreaker, and long pants for the mornings. In the afternoon you can wear a t-shirt and often shorts. Bring hiking boots or other sturdy footwear.
Morning temperatures will usually be fine with a light jacket or a warmer long-sleeve shirt. Optional: A light pair of gloves for the mornings will be helpful if you find your fingers getting cold easily.
By afternoon you will be down to a t-shirt as it gets slightly warmer than room temperature.
Tip: Layers mean outer garments you can take off easily! Don’t wear long underwear, while very warm in the mornings, it’s difficult to take them off on a trail.
Recommend basic packing list for April:
- Long sleeve
- Shorts for the day
- Jeans for the night and mornings
- Light jacket
- Medium jacket (early April)
- Sturdy shoes/hiking boots
As the day warms up, you will need to shed layers to manage your core temperature, especially if you exert yourself hiking, climbing, or biking.
What to Wear for Casual Sightseeing
Mornings: For sightseeing, what you need to wear to handle the cooler temperatures in the morning can be as simple as long pants and a light jacket or sweater.
Perceived temperature: If you come from a colder climate, April temperatures will feel like an unseasonably warm spring day, so shorts and a windbreaker would do if you tend to run warm.
Shoes: We suggest wearing sturdy footwear such as hiking shoes if you plan on hiking or walking, as even the easy and moderate trails can have some rocky or steep sections.
Light gloves: If you get cold easily, we advise bringing a light hat and gloves for early mornings. Usually, by noon, you will be shedding the extra layers as the temperatures get warm enough for short sleeves for most people.
What to Wear for Hiking
It is always a good idea to dress in various layers when hiking.
Cotton should not be worn since it absorbs a lot of water and can result in hypothermia. Opt instead for synthetic or merino wool, which will absorb moisture and dry rapidly if it does get wet.
Depending on the temperature and your degree of activity, you should add or remove clothing. Try to prevent becoming wet from sweat because this can result in feeling cold and clammy, especially after sunset and in the morning hours during April.
Bring sunglasses and sunscreen as the sun is unrelenting out in the open.
Our layering recipe for cool mornings:
- Start with a wicking base layer T-shirt against the skin. This can be synthetic or merino wool.
- Add a long sleeve such as Under Armour Cold Gear top or merino wool. Depending on the temperature and your own body heat you may need to add another insulating layer such as a fleece sweater or a windbreaker.
- For the lower body, a pair of hiking pants that zip off into shorts will usually be enough. Our favorite hiking pants are Outdoor Research Ferrosi Convertable pants.
- On your feet wear hiking shoes or boots with good support and traction. We don’t recommend waterproof footwear in the desert as it doesn’t breathe well enough to get all your sweat out of the shoe. Merino wool hiking socks will help keep your feet dry and reduce the risk of blisters.
- You may need a light glove on cool mornings but will quickly stow them in your pack as it warms up.
How Busy Is Sedona in April
Sedona will be pretty busy most of the time in April with crowded parking lots and trailheads on weekends. It’s less busy mid-week and early in the morning.
However, don’t let the busier period stop you from enjoying the sights and outdoor adventures. While Sedona can see a lot of traffic, it still doesn’t compare to the crowds that will fill a busy national park such as Zion.
The traffic in Sedona is pretty steady for the whole month of April as the weather is nice, but it doesn’t line up with any holidays other than Easter, so no times are notably busier than others except the weekends.
Try to avoid weekends: We suggest visiting during the week, as the weekends are the busiest time with traffic jams going into the middle of Sedona.
Parking: If you are going on the weekend, get to town early before the public parking lots fill up. This means getting up early, as many of the parking lots will fill by 9 AM.
If you are planning to hike or mountain bike, you will likely encounter a large number of people at the trailheads, but the crowds will thin down once you are on the trails.
Tip: Try to arrive as early as possible, because trailheads start to get busy after 9 AM.
What to Do in April in Sedona
Our Sedona locals highly recommend the tours above. Make a reservation and receive a voucher (printed or mobile via phone). Very comfortable.
Sedona is a beautiful destination in April, even if you aren’t an active outdoors person. Every direction you look, you will notice towering red sandstone cliffs.
Additionally, there are a lot of shops and restaurants to pass the time if you need a break from more strenuous activities.
Red Rock Scenic Byway
We recommend driving down the Red Rock Scenic Byway to get a sense of the area without getting out of your automobile. From Oak Creek, take Scenic Road 179 north to Highway 89. This 16-mile journey includes various trailheads and pull-offs so you can enjoy the vistas without risking a collision.
Cathedral Rock / Chapel of the Holy Cross.
This one-mile hike is moderately difficult and perfect for an April visit. The rock scrambling section is accessible to most physically mobile people. This hike is located on the south side of Sedona, just off the Red Rock Scenic Byway.
On the other side of SC179 is the Chapel of the Holy Cross, a church located on sandstone above town. The Chapel was built in 1956 and was influenced by the Empire State Building, giving it a very modern style. The chapel is easily accessible by car.
Bell Rock is another hike off the Scenic Byway. This rock dome is easily visible from the road. The 1-mile journey to Bell Rock is moderate, but the climb to the summit is challenging.
Bell Rock is a popular site due to its proximity to the road and short distance, so get there early to grab a parking spot, especially in a busy month like April. Parking is fee-based, however with a National Park Pass, it is free.
Slide Rock State Park
Slide Rock State Park can be found just north of Sedona on Hwy 89.
It is called Slide Rock because of the natural waterslides that are formed by Oak Creek. On a warm day in April, especially in the latter half, you can bring your bathing suit and enjoy sliding down the smooth rock shutes. Bring a towel and some warm clothing to change into as the water is still pretty cool.
The price during April is $20 per vehicle or $3 per person if you ride in via bicycle.
Red Rock State Park
Red Rock State Park is located just south of Highway 89. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced hiker, there’s a trail to suit your needs: From flat walks on groomed trails to strenuous hikes with a lot of climbing.
With canyons and towering rock in all directions, the hiking in Sedona is world-class. Whether you hike for the challenge, to get back to nature, or get cool pictures for Instagram, Sedona has you covered.
The town is home to many trailheads that have you hitting the dirt just a few blocks from the main road. Just keep in mind to get up early in April to avoid crowded trailheads.
Tip: The Airport loop is a fun option for a moderate hike. As the name suggests, the loop goes around the airport, which doesn’t sound that interesting, but the Sedona Airport is on top of a mesa which gives you amazing views and a moderately challenging hike.
Another great hike is out to Devil’s Bridge, a natural rock bridge. Due to erosion over millennia the softer rock has been worn away leaving an impressive span.
There are so many trails and options you can go for 30 minutes or all day.
When hiking, make sure to bring adequate water, even if it’s not summer already. You should aim to drink 1 liter per hour if you are working pretty hard. Adding a backpacker’s water filter to your pack is a good idea as you can process safe drinking water on long hikes. Make note of where the streams are on your map so you know where you can get more water.
Check out the maze of trails on Alltrails.com
Many of the trails are shared with hikers so you need to keep your eyes open, especially during the busy month of April. If you are staying in town you don’t even need to load the bikes on the car as many of the trailheads start right in town.
There is also a bike park in West Sedona with a pump track, berms, and features to have fun playing on. While the riding is groomed the location and views are still the wild It is still only a ride of a few blocks to get into the trail network once you are done playing in the bike park.
The trails in Sedona form an interconnected maze so you have many options when putting rides together. The trails are all rated so you will have an idea of how hard they will be both technically and physically.
Green is easy, blue is intermediate, black is advanced and red is expert. The ratings are a little sandbagged in Sedona so expect the easy and intermediate trails to have more technical features than similarly rated trails back home. The trail rating system is subjective and ranked by consensus so locals that are used to this type of riding will rank things lower than visitors might.
Expect big climbs and lots of rock obstacles. The climbs are paired with epic descents with drops and slab rides.
The Long Canyon Trail to Deadman’s Flat Trail will give you a taste of Sedona riding while still being pretty easy. The climbs are gradual and not very big with minimal technical features. You can do this as an out and back of 4.4 miles or link with other trails to make a loop.
By linking up the Templeton, Llama, Easy Breezy, and Slim Shady trails you have a nice intermediate loop that goes around 16 km. There are 275 meters of climbing which is a mix of moderate grades and steep punchy climbs. While there are a few drops and technical slick rock sections most of the riding is pretty flowy.
When you are ready to push your riding to the next level you have to hit a loop that includes Hiline. This double black diamond trail (red trail on Trailforks) will challenge almost any rider with technical climbs, gnarly descents, and exposure that isn’t for the faint of heart. As it is in the middle of the trail network it is easy to mix it in with other black trails to make a loop.
Equipment for Riding Sedona
If you are riding any black or red trails then it is a good idea to don knee and shin pads, wear full finger gloves, and always wear a helmet.
Sunglasses are a must as it is almost always sunny in Sedona with very little shade as you are in the open desert. Sunscreen or long sleeves are advised to avoid sunburn.
Bring a hydration pack and any water bottles you can fit on your bike. Hard exercise in a dry environment very quickly leads to dehydration. Due to the low humidity, your sweat evaporates quickly so you don’t have that drenched feeling you would get in a more humid environment. Consider adding electrolytes to your water to replace what you are sweating out.
Check out the mix of mountain bike trails in Sedona on Trailforks.com
With rock towers in every direction, it isn’t surprising that Sedona is on just about every rock climber’s itinerary when they hit Arizona. The mild weather in fall, winter, and spring means you can climb here when other places are covered in snow.
There are hundreds of climbs within a short drive of town. Many of the climbs are multi-pitch trad climbs but there are also countless sport routes and boulders. It is also a short distance from Prescott where you will find bulletproof granite if you want to mix up your climbing styles.
Since the climbing in Sedona is on sandstone make sure you wait a couple of days after it rains as the rock is porous and weakens when wet.
Honanki Heritage Site and Palatki Heritage Site are both ancient native cliff dwellings north of downtown Sedona. You can learn from the local guides and explore the area to see how people lived almost a thousand years ago.
There are petroglyphs around the canyons as well which is a fun thing to look for when hiking.
Is April a Great Time to Visit Sedona?
Even though April can be a little cool in the mornings it is a great time to visit Sedona, Az. Days are getting longer and most afternoons are comfortable in a T-shirt. Just make sure to drink a lot as the dry air will make you dehydrated very quickly.
Sedona is a mecca for outdoor enthusiasts, spiritual seekers, history buffs, and tourists looking for great views. Make sure if you are ever in the area you take the time to explore and fall in love with the beauty.