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Routes in Insomnia Canyon

Denied Bail T 5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
Heir To The Throne T 5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
Insomnia Spire - 25 to Life T 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b
Life Without Parole T 5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b
Reign of Sand T 5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
Valhalla T 5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a
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Type: Trad, 600 ft, 6 pitches
FA: B. McCord, Z. Harrison
Page Views: 3,038 total · 101/month
Shared By: Blake M on Jun 2, 2016
Admins: Luke Bertelsen, JJ Schlick, Greg Opland

You & This Route

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Valhalla, a hall of rock in Norse mythology, where warriors slain in battle fight for eternity to ready themselves to aid Odin in Ragnarok or “Doom of the Gods”. After battle, warriors feast and drink. Prepare for eternal battle. Valhalla packs varied, sustained and quality climbing in a beautiful setting. Bring your confidence and wide gamut A game. 5 Stars!

P1 - 5.11+

Blerch out of the sand into a rough warm-up boulder problem on bolts. Power out the leaning finger/tips corner. Work the flare/flake, clipping bolts, to a bulge and invent a sequence to the anchor. Stellar! 8 bolts.

P2 - 5.12-

Prepare for battle. Work up right (Optional #1) and clip a bolt. Then blast off onto the black frey. Tech your way through killer patina until the holds disappear and you can move left into a odd flake/crack/corner feature. Make your way up under the roof (small gear) and pull it on jugs. Stem and climb loafy jugs to the anchor. 9 Bolts

P3 - 5.11

Grab your jewerly. Move up past two bolts (avoiding a spooky hollow flake in the corner) and some gear in horizontals into a thin corner. Clip a bolt and pull your way up on tips locks. Wrangle the tree and enjoy a short OW warmup. 3 bolts

P4 - 5.11+

Prepare for the 2nd day of battle. The best pitch ever! Climb dreamy finger to baggy hands on perfect rock to the base of a A-frame roof. Rest, don your armor and then charge, or squirm.., out the roof on #4s. Continue up more fists and OW to the ice box belay (A layer here is nice, cold air pours out of the crack). Note: This pitch could be significantly harder depending on how tight 4s work for your hand size.

P5 - 5.11

Grab your big cams and stumble your way up the offwidth to victory. Overhanging but not technical. 1 Bolt

P6 - 5.7+/-?! PG-18

The guy at the party who sucks but all his friends are cool. Not amazing, but fortunately short. Summit with confidence.

All Belays are bolted.

The first two pitches of the route get sun around noon. The upper 4 pitches are in a north facing dihedral and get all day shade. An early start should allow you to climb in the shade all day.

Do to the rap-in, climb out nature Valhalla is a committing endeavor and not to be taken lightly. Be sure you are ready, the easiest bail route would be to rap into the drainage and make your way up a gully/ridge on the west side of the canyon. Then hike FS 778 to FS 231 to FS 9019M or bushwhack back to your car. This being said, the route is well protected and all the hard climbing could be aided/dogged through.


The shortest approach to Valhalla is from above (the West Fork parking lot car to car speed record is unsent and ripe for the taking!!). Drive out Woody Mountain Road (FS 231) to FS 9019M (26.5 mi). Park at the end of the left fork of 9019M (Labeled 9014D on some maps). Parking area GPS coordinates are 34.993501, -111.779052.

From the parking area head north along the ridge, continue following it as it heads down and left. (There is currently a faint trail but the brush is growing up fast after the slide fire) After a few minutes you will come to a coconino outcropping/point with a decent sized carin. Wrap around the downhill side of this to the back (north) side (carins) and head down a very steep gully with a short hand line. Continue down a steep but short slope to a saddle. From the saddle head west (left) down another gully keeping to the right side until you can exit right to a large flat bench of burnt manzanita. Follow this bench past two gullies, after the second look for a old fallen over tree stump on your left (You will be almost to the end/point of the bench). Duck under it and follow a beaten trail down and right to a ledge at the top of the cliff. Look for a set of glue-in rap anchors to your right. Make 6 raps with a 70m rope (tie knots, a few of the raps are stretchers) down the route to a grassy ledge. Approach is short but steep, about 20min but expect 45 your first time.


The following rack should be plenty for most parties. If you don't want to walk your big cams very far bring extra 5s and 6s for pitch 5

2x - #6
3x - #5
4x - #4
3x - #3 & #2
2x - #1
2x - .75
1x - .5
1-2x - .4 & .3
2x - C3s down to 00
Set of small to med stoppers
12 runners/draws
1 70M Rope

Since you rap the route much of the gear can be stashed along the way to lighten the rack you have to climb with. Leave the following at the following rap anchors.

3rd Rap Anchor (Bottom of 5th pitch)
1x - #6
2x - #5

4th Rap Anchor (Bottom of 4th pitch)
1x - #5
4x - #4
3x - #3
1x - #1
2x - .75

5th Rap Anchor (Bottom of 3rd pitch)
1x - #6
1x - .5
1x - C3's
Zach Harrison
Zach Harrison   Flagstaff
Truly classic. Every pitch is money, and makes you earn the trip home. Magical setting. That a route of this quality was hiding away in NAZ until now is evidence of the amazing climbing in the region. Potentially rivals any route of the grade in the area for otherworldly climbing bliss. Go do it! Jun 2, 2016
Kevin Kent
Flagstaff, AZ
Kevin Kent   Flagstaff, AZ
Jeff the true linkup to do here is to come down the canyoneering route and then climb back up valhalla in your wetsuit. Jun 6, 2016
Blake M
Blake M  
Let's see it Kevin Jun 6, 2016
J. Snyder
Flagstaff, Arizona
J. Snyder   Flagstaff, Arizona
I like where your head is at Kevin. Ill belay in a chair all day to watch. Jun 6, 2016
Wow, truly amazing looking route and the location just doesn't get better. the adventure of rising up to this route in proper style, establishing it ground up would have been hard, and hard to beat, it's a shame that experience will never be had. Jun 17, 2016
Eva Christ  
Truly a great route in a wonderful location, in parts sandy, and the hardcore crimping pitch (pitch 2) has fewer crimps now... but generally still one of the best rock you will find in Sedona. It is sustained, nicely equipped and you can place good gear. Thank you, guys!
We did some detours to get there and found the right way out and finally the surprise handline in the dark ;-). So here some additional info how to find it from the parking:
Follow the ridge, first it is flat and not too much grown over-there are no faint trails, anymore. At the end of the flat part follow the ridge leftish down and prepare for mexican locus and other thorny friends. Stay slightly on the left side of the ridge, then you have an easier time finding a cairn at the outcropping end of the ridge. This cairn is key, follow cairns down to your left, over and down some short white coconino slabs, then look to your right- you do not see the gully (it is a thin gully), but it is to the right and down. The handline is a little down the gully. From there it is straight forward down over the saddle and...follow the rest of Blake´s description. Have fun! Oct 6, 2016
Kevin Kent
Flagstaff, AZ
Kevin Kent   Flagstaff, AZ
Finally got around to doing this. Mega 5 star classic route! Definitely the most committing route I've climbed in the Sedona area. A bail off this would be absolutely epic and involve a minimum 5 miles walking in your climbing shoes to get back to your car up top or 89a via the West Fork. The upper pitches can be aided easily enough but I'm not sure the face climbing on P2 can be.
I would recommend an extra .3 or .4 for the first pitch. Also on P3 offset nuts and bring the .5 for the mantle to the anchor (instead of leaving it hanging on the anchor at the top of P3 and being enraged that you can see it 6' away but not use it.)
Lastly we rapped a lunchbox in with beers and sandwiches and left it at the base of the P5 offwidth which is key to mitigate the discomfort of the hanging belay and I also found getting a buzz going was crucial for sending the offwidth. The only gear I placed on P5 was 2 #5s and 2 #6s and I thought that was perfect.
P2 may have hard crimping but I thought the roof on P4 was by far the physical crux of the climb.
Go do this route! May 7, 2017
Eric D
Eric D   Gnarnia
One of the best routes in Sedona and certainly the best stone. Up there with Shangri-la and Southern Revival. Certainly committing but I found it to be well protected and generally accessible. Full-value and requires a full set of tools. Jun 9, 2017

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