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Church Spires Area

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Beach Areas, The 
Cemetery, The 
Christianity Spire 
Church Wall and Religion Wall 
Minister and the Pulpit 
North Tower  
Planetarium, The 
Streaker Spire 
Trundler's Club Buttress 
Twin Butte Area 

Church Spires Area Rock Climbing 

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 4,200'
Location: 34.83254, -111.76932 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 199,270
Administrators: Greg Opland, James DeRoussel, JJ Schlick, Hendrixson, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: JJ Schlick on Mar 22, 2006


53° | 29°

54° | 28°

56° | 33°

61° | 32°

58° | 33°
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The Church Spires Area is one of Sedona's better cragging venues, with a number of fine areas, and some truly classic pitches. The climbing is spread out across the Twin Buttes area around the Chapel of the Holy Cross, and then, of course, on the spires themselves.

Formations and areas include (but not limited to): The Planetarium, Upper and Lower Beach areas, The Church and Religion Walls, Streaker Spire, The Watchtower, Christianity (aka Beckey) Spire, Minister and the Pulpit, Trundler's Club Buttress, Blow Job Rock, Devil's Thumb, etc.

Whether you are looking for steep sport routes, or old school spire adventures, this place has it all.

Getting There 

From the "Y" drive south on 179 to Chapel Road, which is clearly signed. Head east on Chapel Road, and look for pullouts on the north (left) side of the road before the church entrance. This place has everything... except parking. Arrive early for best results.

Climbing Season

Weather station 1.4 miles from here

51 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',6],['3 Stars',21],['2 Stars',17],['1 Star',4],['Bomb',1]

Classic Climbing Routes in Church Spires Area

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Church Spires Area:
Original North Face Route   5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b     Trad, 3 pitches, 225'   Streaker Spire
Broken Arete   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 60'   Church Wall and Religion Wa... : Upper Religion Wall
Follow Your Bliss   5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 65'   Church Wall and Religion Wa... : Church Wall
Genesis   5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, 65'   Church Wall and Religion Wa... : Church Wall
Blast from the Past (Isaac's Rt)   5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b     Trad, 5 pitches, 400'   Christianity Spire
Reef Shark   5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   The Beach Areas : Lower Beach
Starship Trooper   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Sport, 1 pitch, 75'   The Planetarium
Trundler's Club   5.11- 6c 22 VIII+ 22 E3 5c     Trad, 5 pitches, 350'   Trundler's Club Buttress
Space Cowboys   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a PG13     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   The Planetarium
Typhoon   5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   The Beach Areas : Lower Beach
Castles in the Sand   5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a     Trad, 3 pitches, 150'   Church Wall and Religion Wa... : Church Wall
Red Lizard   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 2 pitches, 130'   The Cemetery
Watchtower AKA Last Temptation   5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   Church Wall and Religion Wa... : Lower Religion Wall
Pussy Mind Trick (PMT)   5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Trad, Sport, 4 pitches, 350'   Trundler's Club Buttress
Lunar Lander   5.12a/b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6a     Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   The Planetarium
Do The Bosco   5.12b 7b 26 VIII+ 26 E5 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   The Planetarium
Alpine Follies Hangover   5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   Church Wall and Religion Wa... : Upper Religion Wall
Gravitational Pull   5.12d 7c 28 IX 28 E6 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 85'   The Planetarium
Mission To Mars   5.12d 7c 28 IX 28 E6 6b     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   The Planetarium
Galactic Hitchhiker   5.13a 7c+ 29 IX+ 29 E6 6c     Sport, 1 pitch, 80'   The Planetarium
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Church Spires Area

Featured Route For Church Spires Area
Rock Climbing Photo: Looking down on the top half of the climb after th...

Alpine Follies Hangover 5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b  AZ : *Sedona Area : ... : Upper Religion Wall
This is a new route that climbs a beautiful finger crack splitter that gradually transitions from tips to perfect fingers. The climbing is sustained 11+ with a 25 foot crux section. After the face crack it slowly transitions to the right where the dihedral opens up for the remainder of the climb. Enjoy!...[more]   Browse More Classics in AZ

Photos of Church Spires Area Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Top of Streaker Spire!
Top of Streaker Spire!
Rock Climbing Photo: The Four Flying horsemen of the apocolypse.  From ...
The Four Flying horsemen of the apocolypse. From ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Cory bivying before pushing to the summit of Chris...
Cory bivying before pushing to the summit of Chris...

Comments on Church Spires Area Add Comment
Show which comments
Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Feb 16, 2015
By Joe Keyser
From: Scottsdale, AZ
Jan 2, 2007
What is the trick for the parking here & accessing the trailhead? It seems that the only parking is only for church tourists, etc... Tried going there a couple times only to be turned around. There are plenty of other crags to go to in Sedona, so no big loss, but I'm curious what tactics are used for getting to the climing here?? Thanks!
By JJ Schlick
From: Flagstaff, AZ
Jan 2, 2007
There used to be parking right outside the gate. Now adays you have to go back down Chapel road and find a pullout and walk back in. Kind of a drag, but... I have never been locked in the gate area or ticketed.
By Seth Dyer
Jan 2, 2007
We've never had trouble since we started parking lower on Chapel Rd. And realistically it only adds a minute or two to the approach.
By Jason Nelson
From: SLC, UT
Feb 12, 2012
A simple approach is go to Chicken Point and then head up a gully toward the route. Here are GPS directions. (note: we had some backtracking due to getting cliffed out)
By Eric Foster
Feb 24, 2012
Is this anyone else's project currently? There are no bolts on it for an anchor currently and I have started projecting it. It is to the left of Broken Arete and climbs the obvious dihedral tips crack and the tips/finger crack to the left of the dihedral. I have had a couple burns on it and I think it will go at 12+. Going this weekend to put in some anchors if it isn't someone project already, it doesn't show any signs of it though.

Rock Climbing Photo: Upper tier Dihedral
Upper tier Dihedral
By JJ Schlick
From: Flagstaff, AZ
Feb 24, 2012
Hey Erock, That may be the old aid line? 4 or 5 pitches? Bloom and Rodman may have ventured onto it a long time ago. I'll ask Burcham if he knows.
By Eric Foster
Feb 24, 2012
It is definitely only one pitch, there is no way it could go any higher. At least I don't think so becuase the crack disappear about 100 feet up and turns to blank face. There is no evidence of aid either, don't think this is what you are talking about but I could be wrong.
By Eric Foster
Feb 26, 2012
Hey JJ,

I talked to some guys about the line today out at the wall and they said that the aid line is farther to the left of this one. I got on the climb today, put 2 bolts at the bottom for a belay because its loose and slopey with a 100 foot cliff right behind it (1/2 inch x 3 3/4 inch 5 piece powers). The crack starts at 000 then gradually widens to .4 BD for the last 50 feet, it is splitter. Needs some cleaning, I plan to go out there during the week to do some trundling while there is no one around. Its going to be a classic line for sure. There is currently no anchors at the top of the first pitch just some fixed gear for an anchor I left there to get down.

By JJ Schlick
From: Flagstaff, AZ
Feb 27, 2012
Right on, sounds burly.
By Eric Foster
Mar 6, 2012
There is a route that I am curious about. It is climbers left of the church wall way around the corner up high. I am sure everyone has looked at it. It is a 100 foot tall wide crack (off width) that dissects a large tan sandstone face and is unmistakeable from the hike in. Has it been climbed and if so does anyone have some info on it? If it hasn't been touched it looks like a nice Sedona off width.
By JJ Schlick
From: Flagstaff, AZ
Mar 6, 2012
Erock, I am pretty sure Mattson did lead that thing. I seem to recall 160' of oldschool #5 Camalots...
By Eric Foster
Mar 7, 2012
Damn that's burly, that thing looks pretty good though from far away. I only have one #5/#6. Might need to pool together some big cams for that one.
By JJ Schlick
From: Flagstaff, AZ
Mar 7, 2012
Mattson was the definition of bad ass in his hay day. He certainly had an eye for hard lines. Let us know if you make it up there!! And good luck.
By Eric Foster
Mar 23, 2012
There is a splitter tips to good fingers crack on the pulpit spire that is tucked to the right of the corner in the picture. I can't find any information on the crack or the corner, has it been done? From the looks of it, it looks least the crack. Looks like it'll go at least low 13.

Rock Climbing Photo: Crack right of corner
Crack right of corner
By Eric Foster
Mar 23, 2012
Another photo close up of the crack.
Rock Climbing Photo: Up Close
Up Close
By JJ Schlick
From: Flagstaff, AZ
Mar 24, 2012
Hey Erock,

Not sure about the line in the photos, but I wanted to let you know that there are two single pitch lines on the west side of Christianity that you can see from the Church Wall. Both routes were put up by Seth Dyer and James Q Martin. The easier one (.11-?) is called Stiff Mister. Neighborhood Threat 5.12- is the thin crack. Not listed on here yet because it's been a long time since we were last on them. Bolted anchors. Worthy pitches.
By Eric Foster
Mar 24, 2012
Cool, ya i saw both of those routes you are talking about. One has a bolt and desert piton at the bottom anchor on the ledge and the other has 2 bigger bolts that requires some easy but very exposed 5th class soloing above the ledge. It looks like there are a few other possible lines on the west face. Are there any other established routes on this side that you know about? There is also a really good looking fingers to big hands roof crack way far right that looks cool.

Thanks for the info,

By Eric Foster
Mar 24, 2012
Here is a edited photo of the area. Are these any of the lines you were talking about?

--- Invalid image id: 107524234 ---
By JJ Schlick
From: Flagstaff, AZ
Mar 26, 2012
Hey Erock,

Minister and the Pulpit is actually the smallest little spire up there. It is in between North Tower and Christianity. The photo you added is actually Christianity Spire. I'll see if Seth can't point out the lines a little better.
By Eric Foster
Mar 27, 2012
Ahh, ok cool that makes more sense now. I think there is a beta photo online here that describes the spires from left to right incorrectly then. I used it to figure out which ones were which, but I may have read it wrong.
By Ryan Z
Dec 12, 2013

I would be very interested in hiking up and climbing that Offwidth. 160ft of old school #5's sounds like a real good time to me. Gear is not an issue. Do you guys know if there are anchors? or how Mattson got down?
By JJ Schlick
From: Flagstaff, AZ
Dec 12, 2013
It's called Pay To Pray 5.11- in Sedona Rocks. Fixed anchors.
By Eric Foster
Feb 16, 2015
I will be up for the off-width when I move back to Flag in 2 years man. I am currently stationed in Georgia. Took me 2 years to notice your comment, wish MP had a better notification system for comments on pages were active on. Until then you guys enjoy that Arizona sun, I miss it.

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