Winslow Wall is a wonderful little crag tucked away in an unlikely location. Those willing to do the drive and complicated approach & exit will be rewarded with a beautiful, secluded canyon filled with many sport & trad routes that scale the steep sandstone walls.
The rock is mostly very good sandstone, and often covered with a hard, dark patina a la Red Rocks. Trad routes tend to be steep, splitter-style cracks with occasional face holds and good pro. The sport routes are generally steep, and often feature patina crimps and/or technical face climbing. Winslow Wall is also known for “scoop” routes that feature technical stemming through 1 or more scoops – body to bus sized huecos.
The prime season to climb at Winslow Wall is late Spring through mid-Fall. The water levels are generally too high during early to mid Spring, and late Fall can be too cold in the canyon. The hottest summer days can be nice if you chase the shade. Most routes are single pitch, but there are a few 2 pitch routes to be found. To my knowledge all single pitch routes can be climbed with a single 70 meter rope, and for many 60 is adequate. Although there are a few easier routes, enough for a day or so, most routes are solid 5.10 or higher.
To the best of my knowledge, early routes at Winslow Wall were of crack lines, most notably The Kingsnake, The Hanging Judge, Darkstar, and Stick It. First ascensionists include Tim & Larry Coats, John Steiger, Ray Ringle, Jim Haisley, Tim Toula, Stan Mish, and others. Later on several sport lines were developed on the faces between the cracks. First ascensionists include David Bloom, Rodney Blakemore, Doug Lafarge, Rich Ludwig, Chris Hahn, and others. There is still a tiny bit of FA potential in the main area. There is a ton of FA potential up-stream from the rap in gulley, but you will want a boat (a small inflatable works best) as the water gets deep. Please do not bolt near gear placements, squeeze between routes, or alter existing routes.
Morning at canyon rim, as viewed from the camping area.
There is a small amount of primitive camping at the parking area. If the camping is full one can drive a short bit back the way they came in to find some other camping spots. However, if camping up the road please make sure you are not doing so on private property. The area is barren, so expect exposure to wind/sun/etc... There are no toilets, water spigots, trash cans, or designated campsites. Pack out ALL trash. Use existing fire rings instead of making more. Take proper pooping precautions. Don't trample or otherwise damage vegetation. You know the routine.
Winslow Wall is an isolated, delicate, environmentally sensitive, & incredibly beautiful area. Please keep it that way. Please pack out EVERYTHING you bring in. Please poop only above the rim.
A few considerations: -Watch out for occasional patches of poison ivy in the canyon. -Please avoid excessive chalk & clean off any tick-marks before you leave. -The area is occasionally used by boaters floating up from Ft. McHood. Please be courteous & considerate of them. -The darker rock is often harder than the lighter rock, but not always. -A couple of the older routes on the West Wall have anchors atop the 1st pitch, but climbing the second pitch requires topping out, walking downstream on the rim to the end of the climbing area, scrambling down another gulley, then rappelling back into the canyon.
To get there: Start on highway 87. Turn east on highway 99 (a couple miles south of south of Winslow) and drive for about 6 miles, passing over the Ft. McHood bridge (east Clear Creek) along the way. At the 6 mile mark there is a left hand turn, which is the signed Territorial Road. Just after this is a fence on the right. Immediately after the fence is a dirt road to the right. Turn right on this dirt road and follow it for about ¾ mile as it parallels the aforementioned fence. Some of this road is on private property, and continued access is appreciated, so please be very respectful of the area. After almost mile the road comes to a Y. Bear left at the Y (leaving the fence) and follow this road for about ¾ mile until it ends. Park here. At this point you will be able to see the canyon below. Follow an obvious trail that parallels the canyon rim for a short while (maybe 1/3 mile) to a small slot leading into the canyon. Scramble down this for a short way to reach the fixed rappel & haul lines. Rap in & enjoy! Most of the routes are to the right (downstream) of the rappel, but there are a few great ones to the left also. To exit, most people either climb out the rappel gulley (5.4-ish) using a gri-gri on the fixed ropes, or just jug the fixed ropes. One can also climb out via a few routes that top out.
Get Tim Toula's guide to northern AZ, it will get you to WW and identify the trad lines. None of the sport lines are in print yet. When driving south on 99 turn right on dirt road after Territorial Road. Drive on the south side of the fence til you reach the canyon, gets rocky, then turn left along the rim to the parking area.
Anyone know the names of the three prominent aretes on the west wall way downstream (almost to the reservoir)? They are a bit past the scoop routes, and on the west side. We always call them the 'three aretes' but im sure they have names.
Also, which of the two scoop routes is Mulva..? The left or right? And what is the name of the other one?
1.) From the 87, turn east onto the AZ-99 2.) Travel for 5.9 miles. At 5.9 miles you will see a road on the left called Territorial. Directly after that will be a cattle guard. Cross the cattle guard and you will see an immediate turnoff onto a dirt road on your RIGHT. 3.) This dirt road will parallel a barbed wire fence on your right. Follow this dirt road for 0.6 miles. At this point you will see an obvious dirt road heading LEFT. Take that. 4.) Follow this dirt road for another 0.6 miles. The road will lead to an obvious parking area with a stone fire pit. 5.) There is an obvious trail to the right of the parking lot marked along the way with cairns. This trail follows the canyon south. 6.) At the end of the trail you will hit a small tributary canyon. Scramble your way down (west) and you will run into some fixed rappel lines. 7.) Once you are down there are a ton of great climbs on both east and west walls. Some may be inaccessible due to creek water levels.
Note: I am told there are some kind folks who maintain some of this gear.
Winslow Wall is a gem of an area. Keep it clean and be respectful. Thanks to all who have helped develop the area and provide folks like me with a way in. We had a blast!
I LOVE this place. Went September-can't wait to go back when it warms up, wonderful!!! Definitely is like having a little Red Rocks in AZ. Combo this with some deep water soloing not far away, what a weekend!!!
The Winslow Wall is the most unique climbing area in the U.S. The WW is only a small section of East Clear Creek. Need I say more? For better deep water soloing check out Chevlon canyon, the next canyon to the east. Bring a canoe!
I noticed recently that someone chopped down a bunch of the vegetation in the canyon. specifically the tree next to aqua vulva, and one farther down. I believe this occurred over the weekend of the 4th. I find it sad that some climbers do not have respect for the beautiful place WW is, and request the all climbers the visit treat the place with respect. Its a beautiful place lets keep it that way.
Is the unknown route which is on the same formation as standing on a corner on this site? it had some interesting face moves followed by a little roof problem which to my puny ego seemed commiting. two bolted lines towards the canyon from standing on a corner. if not I'd love to add it!!
By JJ Schlick Administrator From: Flagstaff, AZ May 21, 2012
After talking it over quite a bit with Mike K, we decided the best way to render the information on the Winslow Wall more usable was to break it into a simple East/West split. Mike will sort the routes when he has some time, and that should be a step in the right direction. Though not all the lines down there are posted on MP, one day they will be, and this change should help folks navigate the depths and find routes more easily. It may take a day or two for the route counts to sort themselves out.
Did someone take a draw off the 10 down stream from grey matter this last week? It was left there as a redirect for shooting photos and I was unable to grab it before it rained buckets and soaked everything. I would really appreciated it back its got camp wiregate biners and a long BD dogbone. Thanks
AMAZING! I went there for the first time on 10/19 and was totally blown away. This is a truly special and amazing place to climb. There was a few feet of water in the middle of the stream, but there were dry spots in front of all the climbs we wanted to do.
The driving and approach directions are clear enough, and it is easy to find the obvious trad lines like King Snake and Dark Star once you are in the canyon. After that, identifying most of the routes is easy. It took us a little bit longer than expected to get out, but ascending the fixed lines or climbing the gully with a pack is not all that difficult.
I cannot say enough positive things about this crag and cannot wait to go back!