Type: Trad, 250 ft, 3 pitches
FA: Ed Webster, Sue Patenaude, May 1979
Page Views: 10,330 total · 66/month
Shared By: Anonymous Climber on Jan 23, 2006 with updates from Scott Krankkala
Admins: Luke Bertelsen, JJ Schlick, Greg Opland

You & This Route

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Oak Creek Spire is a classic double-summited Sedona spire with a rabbit-ears profile. This tower tends to have a lot more loose rock than other towers in Sedona, so a little extra caution is advised. The highlight of climbing OCS is the (in)famous "jump move" on the lead of the third pitch, where you have to leap across a gap between the spire's ears to a small stance on the far side. Exciting stuff!

For the North Face-West Crack, start on the North side in a right-facing corner (see pictures).

P1) Climb initial corner crack, then either go straight up, or out onto the face and climb to a steep exit slot and a pair of belay bolts. Move the belay from here up to a ledge just below the next pitch crack.

P2) Climb the tight-hands crack to gain the flared chimney above. If you have big hands, this may feel like 10-. Once in the flare, climb to the big blocky chimney above. You can belay here if you want to break it up a bit, or just continue up the blocky chimney the top of the lower OCS tower. This lead is about 185 feet if you go all the way.

P3) Locate the proper jump, down on a lower ledge across from the other tower. Get some slack and make the leap of faith. Not a good idea to fall. Then climb left, then up, then back right and up a last crack to a (visible from the jump spot)bolted anchor on the wall. The actual summit is another ten feet higher and includes a mailbox. Belay up to and down from here accordingly.


Standard rack up to #4 Camalot, two ropes, HELMET!!


Route can be rappelled with a single 60m rope. From the anchors after the jump rappel to the top of the sub-tower. There are red anchor bolts with quicklinks. Rappel straight down to two bolts and links on the face for the route La Quinta. From those bolts trend climbers left to two bolts at the top of the first pitch.


James Fisher
Sedona, AZ
James Fisher   Sedona, AZ
For the descent, you can rappel off summit and across the jump across. From here, you can go to the north face, overlooking p2 and p3. A double rope rap will get you to the base of p2 and one more rap to the ground. Much cleaner rap than old descent. Mar 5, 2006
Will Cobb
Flagstaff, AZ
Will Cobb   Flagstaff, AZ
A couple of items about Oak Creek Spire.

1. The first pitch is insecure and scary at 5.8+. The climbing isn't that hard, but it is strange and insecure at times.
2. The rap anchor spoken of above is hidden very well. Look for two white/grey painted hangers that are facing almost directly north. As you top out the third pitch the rap anchor is down and around to the left.
3. This route is awesome because it throws a little bit of everything at you. The second pitch is great because it starts thin hands/hands then progresses to a sweet chimney. Apr 10, 2006
my $.02. my best beta for the route (gear wise) is to take a number 5 camalot. if taken, it is used and every pitch and is great to have. it is also a great way to protect the akward 5.8+ first pitch, which i have personally seen spit of a solid 5.12 climber. Oct 8, 2006
Seth Dyer  
Jeremy Schlick and I added the new rap anchors sometime back in 2001 or 2002. We didn't try to hide them, rather we tried to place them inconspicuously. But they do make things immensely easier as far as getting off the tower is concerned. Right back down to your packs if I remember correctly.... Oct 16, 2006
Dean Hoffman  
Fantastic tower and home of two of my most favorite epics. Once with Willie C. when we had to bail after I lost my breakfast while leading the 2nd pitch, and once with Felix and Adi Amar when we were benighted and experienced the adventure that is trying to find rap anchors in the pitch black. It was only 11 when we got back to the packs and Adi's grandparents didn't complain too much when they came home to find us raiding their fridge before we went back to Flag, sweet route and good climbing. Glad to know about the new anchors, thanks Seth. Feb 14, 2007
Portland, OR
rpc   Portland, OR
Good route on a great-looking spire. Found the crux opening moves of P2 to be very hard (maybe smaller hands than mine make things smoother here?). Found the new rap bolts - quick and painless descent right down to the packs (thank you!). Left a fixed line to help us get back down & across the chasm - seems like it would be a little tricky to rap across w/o one. Double 70 meter rope will not get you to the ground from these new bolts (not that there's a need for that). Thanks to Greg for the approach map. Feb 20, 2007
Michael Sokoloff
Spokane, WA
Michael Sokoloff   Spokane, WA
Do both the leader and follower need to do the jump across? I am interested in doing the route with my wife, but she's not into jumps. Would jugging the pitch be possible? May 19, 2007
Kole DeCou
Flagstaff, AZ
Kole DeCou   Flagstaff, AZ
I'm picturing Wile E. Coyote here. I wouldn't reccomend jugging the last pitch. A better option would be to top out alone and collect your gear while rapping down, although it would be a shame not to be able to share the summit with your wife. The new rap has a station on the lower summit, so you're not committed to the jump. Maybe once she's there she can summon the courage.

PS. With some aid climging tricks it should be possable to jug the pitch (self lower off a slung boulder..) May 20, 2007
Mike   Phoenix
I remember doing this route several years ago and getting sketched at the jump across on the last pitch. So I got a running start and jumped too far, smashing hard into the rock wall. It's a wonder that I held on. It definitely looks farther & harder than it really is. Nov 18, 2007
Spokane, WA
ElyseSokoloff   Spokane, WA
So if I can do a 4+ foot standing broad jump should I be able to make it? Nov 18, 2007
Mike   Phoenix
I think so, but it's been a while, so I reserve the right to be wrong. HTH. Dec 6, 2007
mcarizona   Flag
Some saint left a webbing and double biner belay at the top of the squeeze chimney (2nd pitch after the broken section) Bring another 20 footer if you want to back it up. Also using the bolts for the rappel is a much faster descent than in the past. Thanks!
Steve Nov 1, 2009
erik kapec
prescott, az
erik kapec   prescott, az
awesome climb, got spit off the top of the first pitch twice. third times the charm! had to bail cause most of the party could not make progress on the wierd hand crack on p2. Made it to the top of the runout flaring chimney (didnt have any gear biger than 4BD). There are two awesome looking crack once you finish the top of the flaring chimney. One on the right and one on the left. which crack takes you to the top of the lower tower? they both look so nice and pure....P.S. bailed from right above the chimney...if the webbing was green and one of the biners had black tape, and one with green/bue tape that was us. Im glad to hear noone bootied the gear! oh and if you are going to bail from the top of the chimney, watch out for the trees and prickly pear at the base when tossing the ropes. was kind of a pain to deal with. Mar 4, 2010
A #5 BD is nice if you aren't a solid chimney climber. Green webbing has a hole the size of a finger on the back... Should probably have cut it, beware. Mar 27, 2012
Danny G.
Flagstaff, Arizona
Danny G.   Flagstaff, Arizona
Great adventure! The gap is just under 6 feet according to my wingspan measurement while on rap (now you can practice in the comfort of your living room)! After climbing this clean twice I think the 2nd pitch really is 10+. I have medium size hands and have done a bit of sandstone climbing but maybe I'm just missing something. Don't let this deter you, it's possible to yard through it on gear if needed and the route is rewarding. Also - heed the rap beta and don't rap into the bowling alley as we did on our first trip! Apr 24, 2012
toddgordon Gordon
Joshua Tree, California
toddgordon Gordon   Joshua Tree, California
Hello. Yesterday (Aug 10th) we climbed Oak Creek Spire. We misplaced and left about 10 cams on one of the ledges while descending......(oops!) If you find our gear and return it to us, we will send you a $100 reward. Thank you. You will have good karma too.
Todd Gordon and Tucker Tech.
Joshua Tree, Ca. (760) 366-9395 Aug 12, 2012
toddgordon Gordon
Joshua Tree, California
toddgordon Gordon   Joshua Tree, California
A kind girl from Flagg found our gear and is returning it to us. We are happy;...climbers are kind...thank you! Sep 14, 2012
Alex Wood
Flagstaff, Arizona
Alex Wood   Flagstaff, Arizona
The cows along the Jacks Canyon Trail make this a PG-13 affair. Also, bring the #5, especially for the 2nd pitch. Dec 14, 2012
Ryan Z
Ryan Z  
This climb was quite the adventure. I didn't think it had much loose rock. It all seemed pretty solid to me. P1 was a really fun short pitch with an airy move out of a crack. P2 had some "character" moves right off the ground then a prime chimney. A #5 is a good idea. The jump was incredible! really cool. I'm kind of a short fellow and it's not a far jump. If you can climb the 2nd pitch you can definitely do the jump. Don't let that one move lead you away from a grand experience! Jan 22, 2013
Andrew Belus
Denver, CO
Andrew Belus   Denver, CO
does anyone know if its possible to get away with a 4.5? Feb 2, 2013
Grizzly Adams
Tempe, AZ
Grizzly Adams   Tempe, AZ
After doing this route I think it is unnecessary to drag up two ropes. If I were to do this again I would leave my second rope at the top of P1 as 1 60m will get you from the top of the first spire back down to the top of P1 on a single strand rap. You can then tie on and pull up the second cord left on top of P1 and the second can then rap off both. Apr 9, 2013
Neil Kauffman
Bishop, CA
Neil Kauffman   Bishop, CA
As of 5/21/13 the 1 inch webbing rappel anchor at the top of the squeeze chimney on pitch 2 was in good shape. It slings a large diameter block and features a fat steel quick link. Bring a long piece (15-20ft) of webbing if you wanna back it up. Using this allowed us to RAP WITH A SINGLE ROPE. We had a 70M but a 60M should be sufficient. A bolted station here would be nice, as the other retro anchors seem to be well received.
A slim but sufficient rack...(Camalots)
1 each .3-.75 and #5
2 each #1,#2,#3

please edit the initial page to reflect rap and gear beta May 22, 2013
marcin ksok
Flagstaff, AZ
marcin ksok   Flagstaff, AZ
Left a sweatshirt below pitch 2, I can pick it up in flag, or please carry it out and dispose of it. Sorry for the unintentional littering. Feb 8, 2015
Jacky Thompson
Flagstaff, AZ
Jacky Thompson   Flagstaff, AZ
Fun, classically chossy climb! Definitely take a #5 for pitch 2, unless youre comfortable running the crap out of that flared squeeze chimney. The jump across looks much scarier than it really is, and was a really cool part of the climb. I suggest doing it, and to not be too intimidated! totally worth it! May 13, 2015
Phoenix & Prescott, AZ
arjunmh   Phoenix & Prescott, AZ
Very cool climb!
The webbing and cordalette on top of the pillar in the middle of p. 2 are in decent shape and so doing the route with ONE 60m ROPE is just fine. We hauled in 2 ropes, left the second at the base of the p. 2 and didn't use it as the pull from the intermediate station seemed fine. So, yes, I would definitely endorse a bolted rap anchor at this wonderful belay ledge. Breaking up p. 2 means hauling less gear in and only having one rope, all of which makes the hike in mellower!!
Great climb and fun to run into the 2 Jeffs working on their new routes ... most excellent. Nov 23, 2015
I climbed this route last Thursday. My partner Devra broke her ankle while following the jump across move. She stuck the jump but landed weird and broke her tibia and fibula. Very gnarly. We managed to self rescue back to the north spire, then a Devra was helicopter evacuated from the north summit. Unfortunately I had to leave behind some gear. I would sincerely appreciate it if the next party could return my equipment. On the last pitch I left behind a #2 and #4 Camelot, 2 shoulder length runners and a locker, most of the gear should be marked with green tape. If you find the gear and return it I can offer a 6 pack and an epic story in return. 214-697-2164

PS - the rap anchor midway up p2 is good to go, I rapped the route by myself with a 70m Oct 10, 2016