Mountain Project Logo

Visiting Sedona - Need Info

Original Post
Hand.jammin · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Feb 2013 · Points: 10

Hey Everybody,

Me and some friends are heading out to Sedona from San Diego on Friday in search of better weather. We are planning to climb around the Sedona Area. I was hoping someone could provide some info for Oak Creek and the Waterfall Area. It looks like rockfall there is a major concern but the last post for that area was in 2013. Does anyone know if rock fall is still a major problem here or something that should detour us from going there all together? The climbing looks awesome and we'd like to check it out. I was also hoping someone could point us in the direction of some camping. We saw some BLM camping in the cococino area but were hoping to leave our stuff set up while we are there so we were thinking maybe the walk up sites at Manzanita? Any info is appreciated as well as advice on best areas to hit with the holiday weekend crowds coming (we are 5.9 - 5.10 trad climbers and 5.11 on sport). Thanks everyone looking forward to hitting some sandstone since we mostly climb granite.

Andrew McQ · · Prescott, AZ · Joined Jul 2017 · Points: 65

The Waterfall is amazing!  However, random rockfall is almost always an issue due to the choss band above the anchors - wear a helmet!  Climbing crowds probably won't be an issue for you at the Waterfall, but the tourons will certainly make travel around Sedona and Oak Creek a headache.  If you're looking for more 5.9-5.10 trad, I'd suggest Paradise Forks.  It doesn't have bolted anchors, but there's more in your desired grade range, easier camping, and you can TR anything out there without needing a rope gun or aid.  If you're still set on Sedona, I'd try to reserve a campsite ASAP, as the holiday crowds will probably affect your ability to find a spot.

Eric D · · Gnarnia · Joined Nov 2006 · Points: 235

The Waterfall rockfall is more of a problem in the couple of days after rain.  That being said, it is currently raining and snowing in Flagstaff and we've had a very wet week.  The bigger issue is that Waterfall climbing generally starts at 5.10 (of which there aren't a whole lot) and goes up from there.  You may want to instead consider going to the Oak Creek Overlook or Paradise Forks.  They have more accessible grades and no real rockfall issues.  The Forks also has great free camping.  I would recommend moderate Sedona multi-pitches to you but considering how wet this week has been you should probably stick to basalt.

Miguel D · · SLC · Joined May 2014 · Points: 508

I agree with the previous comments about the Waterfall area. Super cool indeed, but I think you'd enjoy it more if you're comfortable climbing 5.11s. At least that was my experience when I went there. I was just breaking into 11as on gear and got my ass handed to me even on some of the harder 10s, didn't even try 11s there.

I really like the Overlook and that would be a good option for you guys, I think. Paradise Forks would be pretty cool as well. Both locations require you to build TR anchors off natural features so it's helpful to have long slings, or even better, a separate section of 50-80' of static rope. If I recall correctly, it is common at the Forks to set up a rappel line for the day that you use to get back down to the canyon after each climb (since you come in from the top of the canyon)

Hand.jammin · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Feb 2013 · Points: 10

Hey Everyone, thanks for all of your feedback, we really appreciate it. I think with everything mentioned above we are going to shoot for paradise forks and spend the weekend there. It seems like there is a lot of controversy over top rope anchors there? We are very comfortable with gear anchors so no problem there for us but if there is anything else we should be aware of please let us know so that we can respect your area (I read something about not using trees?). Also where is the free camping in relation to the climbing and is it okay to leave our stuff set up for the weekend? Anyone who will be climbing there this weekend let me know and we'd love to share some beers for all of the info!

Eric D · · Gnarnia · Joined Nov 2006 · Points: 235

I think that is a good decision for your group.  For camping drive past the parking area for the forks and you will immediately go over a small bridge.  Take a right just after the bridge and you will see various spots off on the left.  You'll find something.  I have always left my stuff up all day and never had a problem.  

The MP description of the area has beta on how to easily avoid weighting the trees on rappel.  Basically tie your rope loosely around the tree but then place a piece at the lip so that the piece takes the weight and not the tree.  Thanks for asking about that.  Do bring an extra rope that you will leave all day for rappelling.  

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

Arizona & New Mexico
Post a Reply to "Visiting Sedona - Need Info"

Log In to Reply