City of Rocks, ID

Posted by: d-elvis

City of Rocks, ID - 05/21/04 02:56 PM

How far is it from Boise?
Posted by: learningtolead

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/21/04 03:05 PM

geez, dennis, i looked this up on the web in two minutes. it's a bit over 200 miles, about 3 to 3 1/2 hours by car. you just want to brag that you're thinking of going at least ask for some route beta while you're at it.
Posted by: d-elvis

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/21/04 03:07 PM

I was going to walk it... but not now
Posted by: GeeVee

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/21/04 03:24 PM

I was going to walk it... but not now

With all the gear you own I'm surprised you can make it as far as the Uberfall from the West Trapps Lot.

But Molly's right - that was an awfully lazy question to ask. Next thing you'll be asking which state it's in because you can't figure out what ID is short for.
Posted by: d-elvis

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/21/04 03:25 PM

Now that you ask....
Posted by: Timbo

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/21/04 04:29 PM

Just for the record, if you're thinking of flying and driving (or walking), Salt Lake City is closer. Of course, if you need to go to Boise anyway....

TS
Posted by: GeeVee

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/21/04 04:31 PM

Salt Lake City is closer

It's probably also cheaper to fly in and out of SLC than it is Boise too (but we'll let someone else check that for D-Elvis).
Posted by: MarcC

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/21/04 04:36 PM

Quote:

... Salt Lake City is closer.



...and you spend much less time on winding, two-lane dirt roads than coming from Boise.

If anyone needs them, I have a set of very specific directions with mileages (sorry, no GPS coords yet) that cuts through the desert south of Almo/City of Rocks instead of going up through Malta and coming down to Almo from the north. Saves some time, miles, and backtracking when coming from SLC. The few guidebooks that show this route are inaccurate.
Posted by: d-elvis

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/21/04 04:36 PM

Thanks Timbo, for that educated MATURE response.

Hoping to visit my brother in BOISE, but maybe meeting him at the park and driving from SLC is the way to go.

You all should take a grown up lesson from this exchange.
Posted by: Timbo

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/21/04 05:36 PM

Quote:

Thanks Timbo, for that educated MATURE response.




Who me, mature ? Must have been an evil twin in control of my keyboard.

BTW, the City is great. Wonderful camping, good rock, friendly locals, great climbs in Trad or sport, good steaks at the Almo Outpost.

Just ask me about our cattle herding experiences with the locals......

TS
Posted by: intrepid02

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/23/04 11:42 PM

Driving out to City of Rocks is an experience to be sure. I drove straight there from the Redwoods National Forest. We got in around 3 am, completely bleery eyed and delirious. We took at least 3 wrong turns and almost hit at least 10 jack rabbits. There were so many of the damn things I thought for sure I was halucinating.

I'd love to hear about anyone else's cattle herding stories. I have a great picture of some cowboys herding cattle right down the center of the highway on the "outskirts" of Almo.
Posted by: paborden

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/25/04 04:22 PM

While we're on the subject...how's the weather out there usually in June and July? Anyone been then?
Posted by: MarcC

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/25/04 05:09 PM

It's the high desert so typically fairly stable in late spring and summer - there aren't many storms and those that do occur are usually of short duration. We just don't get those multi-day or week-long storms that the NE is subject to.

However, it is the arid desert and it is the summer - the heat can be crippling. Never be surprised at high temps of 95 - 110 any time from June - mid September. Because of altitude, the sun intensity is also much greater than in the Gunks, therefore in the sun it can easily feel 10 - 20 degrees hotter.

So it can be very warm/hot but climbable or it can be unbearable. Usually though you'll have a good experience if you follow the shade and it's not abnormally hot. Depends a lot on your heat tolerance. It'll be in the mid-upper 90's for sure. Obviously June will probably be a little cooler than July. Bring hats and sunscreen. I also usually bring a big umbrella when I'm travelling in the desert in summer.

Another thing to remember is that unlike the NE, where the high for the day is often in early afternoon, here it occurs nearer the end of the day - 5, 6, maybe even 7 pm. IOW, if you're broiling at 2pm, the standard Gunks plan of waiting till 5pm to do the climb when it cools off probably won't work.

Finally, at that time of the year, there will be usable light to 9:30pm - 10pm since it's so far west but still in the mountain time zone. Idaho is an anomaly in that regard. The Pacific time zone starts on the UT/NV border but in ID it jumps far west to the ID/OR border - if it didn't, the eastern half of ID would be mountain and the western half pacific. Of course that doesn't explain why the ID pan-handle is Pacific and the bottom rectangle is Mountain, but time zones are wierd anyway.

Let me know if you need any other beta.
Posted by: intrepid02

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/26/04 08:40 PM

I was there in late July and found everything quite doable as long as you chase the shade. In the early AM you can climb anywhere you want though.

The week I was there we seemed to get torrential downpours fairly often at about 4 PM, but they would usually last less than an hour. I actually waited out one storm in my tent as a tornado was passing by just outside the park. Highly exciting!

Does anyone know what the protocol is when you're tentbound during a tornado warning? Are you just supposed to try and get your head between your knees?
Posted by: GeeVee

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/26/04 08:42 PM

Are you just supposed to try and get your head between your knees?

And kiss your ass goodbye?
Posted by: MarcC

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/26/04 08:58 PM

Quote:

I was there in late July and found everything quite doable as long as you chase the shade. In the early AM you can climb anywhere you want though.



True enough. Too bad that the majority of the best routes are on the west-facing aspects. At least it seems that way to me!

In a tent in a tornado? I'm not sure there's anything you can do.
Check out the house being sucked up starting about 42 seconds into this 1 minute video (Windows Media, 2.7MB)
http://www.psphoto.com/upload/atticawebclip.wmv
Posted by: intrepid02

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 05/27/04 02:23 AM

Yeah, well, I guess not even a house would have helped in that tornado! Jimminey!

Yes, GV, I was alluding to the old addage about kissing my ass goodbye.
Posted by: andrew

Re: City of Rocks, ID - 06/06/04 11:45 PM

I just spent the weekend at the City - awesome place. Its like Josh, but better and longer climbs. We climbed early in the morning and then again in the evening, and spent from around 1 until 4 in the afternoon not doing anything because it was too hot and sunny for me.

The new guidebook by Tony Calderone(came out in April) has accurate directions for the dirt road short cut.