Joe's Valley Bouldering Trip Questions


Original Post
Nick Conklin · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2015 · Points: 0

Hello all, a friend and I are taking a trip out to Joe's for some bouldering in late October for about 9 days. To save ourselves some money we were thinking of just being dropped off at Joe's with all of the things we need and then hiking around from boulder area to boulder area. What I'm trying to get at is that we will have no car and will be camping and hiking to all the boulders we plan on trying. Is this feasible? We would like to hit up Left, Right, and New but I'm not too familiar with the area as neither of us has ever been there. Any input would be appreciated.

frankstoneline · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2009 · Points: 20
Nick Conklin wrote:Hello all, a friend and I are taking a trip out to Joe's for some bouldering in late October for about 9 days. To save ourselves some money we were thinking of just being dropped off at Joe's with all of the things we need and then hiking around from boulder area to boulder area. What I'm trying to get at is that we will have no car and will be camping and hiking to all the boulders we plan on trying. Is this feasible? We would like to hit up Left, Right, and New but I'm not too familiar with the area as neither of us has ever been there. Any input would be appreciated.
Joe's is quite dispersed, you will be highly dependent on others if you don't have a car (if others are around/willing to drive you around). FWIW it's ~10 to 15 minutes driving to get from either fork to new joe's, and about the same from the popular camping in right fork to get to the climbing in left fork.
Nick Conklin · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2015 · Points: 0
frankstoneline wrote: Joe's is quite dispersed, you will be highly dependent on others if you don't have a car (if others are around/willing to drive you around). FWIW it's ~10 to 15 minutes driving to get from either fork to new joe's, and about the same from the popular camping in right fork to get to the climbing in left fork.
Is the popular camping the Joe's Valley Campground? And if we were staying at the campground is it possible to hike to any of the climbing areas?

Thanks for the help.
Donovan Allen · · Subaru · Joined May 2012 · Points: 415

Nick ,the man size area has camping, climbing, and sometimes an outhouse. There may be a few issues with trying to get dropped off there.
1. Climbing can be very dispersed
2. You won't have service in most areas ( jic you need to call your ride to come get you)
3. The aforementioned outhouse at man size area is only there sometimes, please don't just dig a hole. Wag bags. Use them.
4. You will be very limited to right fork unless you can hitch a ride ( this can be difficult when most people's whips will be packed with pads, people and dogs.
That being said it's easy enough to buddy up with people. You + friend + pads = make friends with a Tacoma owner.

Todd Anderson · · Seattle, WA · Joined Jun 2011 · Points: 145
Nick Conklin wrote: Is the popular camping the Joe's Valley Campground? And if we were staying at the campground is it possible to hike to any of the climbing areas? Thanks for the help.
No, the "Joe's Valley Campground" operated by the Forest Service is all the way at the top of Left Fork and halfway around the Joe's Valley Reservoir. It's a ten-mile drive from that campground to the junction of Left and Right forks. That campground is mostly used by people hanging out at the reservoir, e.g. boaters.

The popular camping up Right Fork is at the Man-Sized area. You can easily walk to any of the Man-Sized boulders, and if you're willing to do a mile or so on the road you can get to several other areas. Left Fork would be a big walk and New Joe's would be a really big walk, though.
Nick Conklin · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2015 · Points: 0

Are there camping sites at Left or New? To be honest it seems like the climbs at Left and New have been more appealing to me based on the videos and pictures I've seen of them.

Thanks for the help guys

Todd Anderson · · Seattle, WA · Joined Jun 2011 · Points: 145

There is a camp area up left fork, pretty close to the junction of left and right. It isn't very large and I don't think it has a toilet. Left fork narrows very quickly so there isn't really any room for camping further up the canyon. I forgot you can also camp up near the Buoux area in right fork, but there isn't a toilet there either. Learn to love wag bags!

You're not really supposed to camp at New Joe's, since it's on private property.

frankstoneline · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2009 · Points: 20
Todd Anderson wrote:There is a camp area up left fork, pretty close to the junction of left and right. It isn't very large and I don't think it has a toilet. Left fork narrows very quickly so there isn't really any room for camping further up the canyon. I forgot you can also camp up near the Buoux area in right fork, but there isn't a toilet there either. Learn to love wag bags! You're not really supposed to camp at New Joe's, since it's on private property.
This is relatively outdated info. There is now a camping area (glorified parking lot) at New Joes on the left side of the road, and dispersed camping that seems ok on the right. Camping in Left Fork is outlawed entirely with the exception of up by the reservoir.
Todd Anderson · · Seattle, WA · Joined Jun 2011 · Points: 145
frankstoneline wrote: This is relatively outdated info. There is now a camping area (glorified parking lot) at New Joes on the left side of the road, and dispersed camping that seems ok on the right. Camping in Left Fork is outlawed entirely with the exception of up by the reservoir.
Yup, I haven't been to Joe's in over a year, and I've only ever camped at Man Sized and Buoux.
frankstoneline · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2009 · Points: 20
Todd Anderson wrote: Yup, I haven't been to Joe's in over a year, and I've only ever camped at Man Sized and Buoux.
Both of those are good places to camp. Man size is likely to yield more traffic and increase chance for ride-sharing if the OP decides to actually go through with the plan
Dan Cooksey · · Seattle, WA · Joined Jan 2014 · Points: 365

Just camp in right fork. You won't be able to miss 3 established camping areas. There will be folks there in October. You will have no issue bumming rides from climbers or red necks with their trucks. Your only issue may be getting to new joes.

I literally walked up and down right fork to all the areas. Its flat and not far. Same goes for left.

Dont sweat it man. Have a little sense of adventure and you will be fine!

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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