Cathedral Crazy Covid Climb

Cathedral Rock can be approached from both the Red Rocks State Park or from the other side of this monolith off the Back O’ Beyond road between Sedona and Village at Oak Creek. It is considered one of the highest energy vortex places and therefore, one of the busiest.  Near the Chapel of the Holy Cross is the road leading to the easier Cathedral Rock climb. 

The parking lot was full and other travelers were smoking weed in the parking lot. They have bathrooms easily available and the steepness of the climb can scare the pee out of you. 

Parking Lot

Once you have reached a certain height up the rock, you have to decide, to I go up and down with all those mask less people on a one-lane highway? Even outside, people are very close together on this path. Do I enjoy the view and miss the best vortex. I chose the second.  

“About eight days after Jesus said these things, he took Peter, John, and James and went up on a mountain to pray. While Jesus was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became shining white. Then two men, Moses and Elijah,[c] were talking with Jesus. They appeared in heavenly glory, talking about his departure, which he would soon bring about in Jerusalem.” Luke 9: 28-31 New Century Version

We went back down the precipitous rock after enjoying the heart pumping climb and a time to sit. After hiking around the bottom, 

I realized I had lost my favorite hat – the green one you have seen in many pictures. It was atop the steep rock where we had stopped to drink and rest.  My wonderful husband said he would go and get it up the rock again.  Yes, the man who had injured his ankle, had a hip replacement five years ago, and is fearless of heights. 

Easily, you can spend a full day exploring Cathedral Rock and all the paths around it on your trip to Sedona. 

When have you decided not to pursue a path because it appears dangerous? How do you overcome fear on a hiking path? 


This is a short, steep climb into the saddle points or “gaps” of Cathedral Rock. The towering side rocks keep the saddle points shaded and breezy; but the lower portion of the trail is bare red rock with total sun exposure – be careful if you’re doing this in the summer.

Trailhead: From the 89A / 179 “Y” … take 179 south 3.4 miles; 
turn right on Back O’ Beyond Road for 0.6 miles; 
parking lot is on your left.
Length:1.5 miles (up and back)   Elevation change: 600 ft
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