Elevation: 6,554 ft
GPS: 42.078, -113.724 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 1,438,925 total · 7,272/month
Shared By: GRK on Jul 25, 2004 · Updates
Admins: GRK, Eric Bluemn, Mike Engle
Access Issue: Due to COVID 19, please be respectful of the residents of Almo. Wear a mask when indoors at places like Rock City or the Visitor Center. (1) Weather Wall, Yellow Wall, & all the crags north of Twin Sisters are CLOSED. (2) No trash cans. (3) Highlining temporary ban in place for CIRO and CRSP Details

Description

City of Rocks is a mecca of climbing, just over the Utah/Idaho border in rural Idaho. Varnished and pocketed granite is the name of the game here. The granite ages with an iron based varnish on it and when the varnish wears through, it forms pockets that wear faster than the varnish. The result is pockets with edges or just edges. The majority of the routes have mixed protection, so caution or knowledge is required as the bolts may stop halfway up the route.

Camping is permitted in City of Rocks in developed sites. Reservations can be made up to 9 months in advance during the reservation season (usually from April to Oct). The town of Almo has the nearest refreshments and food at the Almo Creek Outpost as well as Rock City.

The history here is rich and deserves mentioning. The City of Rocks went by many names early on; Goblin City, Chapel Rocks, Pyramid Circle, and Ancient City were just a few of the monikers that were utilized by the early emigrants. They came through the area on their way to California for a better life, and the rock formations that take on many shapes and figures were a perfect landmark for them to use. As more and more of them came through they left their mark on some of the formations with axle grease.

The climbing history essentially began with the Steinfell Club in the early 1960's. As climbing grew in popularity so too did the impact of climbers. To preserve the nature and resources of the area, the NPS enacted strict rules on the bolting of new routes and also closed certain areas to climbing.

Getting There

From Boise: (Seattle, Portland, etc): Heading east on I-84 from Boise, take exit 216 to Declo. Continue South on highway 77 through Declo and Albion. Once at the Conner Creek Junction, (a T intersection at a stop sign), turn right and go west, continuing through Elba and Almo. The road leading to City of Rocks is to the right just after passing the park’s visitor center in Almo

From Pocatello: (Jackson, Bozeman, etc): Heading west on I-86, take I-84 south for 4 miles and take Highway 81 to Malta. From Malta turn right and follow Highway 77 going West. Pass through Conner Creek Junction (continue straight), Elba and Almo. The road leading to City of Rocks is to the right just after passing the park’s visitor center in Almo.

From Salt Lake City: Head North on I-15 until Tremonton. Travel onto I-84 near Tremonton, and head northwest on I-84 towards Twin Falls/Boise. Seventy five miles after Tremonton, take exit 245 and turn left to follow Sublett road heading west into Malta. From Malta turn right and follow Highway 77 going West. Pass through Conner Creek Junction (continue straight), Elba and Almo. The road leading to City of Rocks is to the right just after passing the park’s visitor center in Almo.

From California: From I-80 Eastbound (Sacramento, etc): Exit at Oasis, make sure to fill up on gas at Wells, no services for a long way. Take 233 toward Montello, later becomes 30 in Utah. To stay on paved roads, continue on 30 until Utah 42 (100+ miles with no services). Left on Utah 42, becomes 81 in Idaho. Left on Cassia Creek Road, then left on 77 (20 miles to Almo). Staying on the paved roads adds 70 miles and 30 minutes. Google maps will route up Grouse Creek Road then to others, more direct, but gravel for 50 miles (no services and also NO RECEPTION).

564 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at City of Rocks

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b R
 275
Lost Arrow
Trad 2 pitches
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
 757
Wheat Thin
Trad
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 663
Skyline
Trad
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
 654
Rye Crisp
Trad
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 575
Bloody Fingers
Trad
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
 427
Thin Slice
Trad
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b
 482
Tribal Boundaries
Sport, TR
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
 505
Colossus
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 145
Redtail
Sport
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c
 151
The Drilling Fields
Sport
5.11a/b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c
 119
Terror of Tiny Town
Trad
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c PG13
 165
Beware of Nesting Egos
Trad
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
 238
Crack of Doom
Trad
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a
 164
She's the Bosch
Sport
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a
 121
Strategic Defense
Trad
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Lost Arrow Lost Arrow Spire
 275
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b R Trad 2 pitches
Wheat Thin Elephant Rock > Elephant Rock - East
 757
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad
Skyline Morning Glory Spire
 663
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad
Rye Crisp Elephant Rock > Elephant Rock - East
 654
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad
Bloody Fingers Breadloaves > Super Hits - Bloody F…
 575
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad
Thin Slice Parking Lot Rock > Parking Lot Rock - No…
 427
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad
Tribal Boundaries Flaming Rock
 482
5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b Sport, TR
Colossus Bath Rock > Bath Rock - West
 505
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Sport
Redtail Rabbit Rock > Rabbit Rock - Southwest
 145
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
The Drilling Fields Drilling Fields > Drilling Fields
 151
5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c Sport
Terror of Tiny Town Buzzard Perch
 119
5.11a/b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c Trad
Beware of Nesting Egos Elephant Rock > Elephant Rock - North
 165
5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c PG13 Trad
Crack of Doom Morning Glory Spire
 238
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Trad
She's the Bosch Window Rock > Window Rock - West
 164
5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a Sport
Strategic Defense Morning Glory Spire
 121
5.11+ 7a 24 VIII 24 E4 6a Trad
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