Monday, April 4, 2011

City of Rocks...part of the 1000 Places to See Before You Die??

In southern Idaho we took a side trip to see the City of  Rocks area which is part of the National Park system.  Coming from the south (out of Utah) the gps gave us directions that ultimately took us down gravel roads, in the middle of nowhere, for almost 30 miles!  Ever have one of those trips when you start to go over things in your mind like: hope we don't have car trouble, run out of gas, get stranded, etc?  We had camping gear, water, food and warm clothing with us....but not too much extra gas!  When we finally arrived (at the area and a paved road) our thoughts turned to 'do we need a new paint job'?  First lesson of this adventure is "don't always trust the gps".  It will usually get you to the destination, but not always by the most convenient path.

Valley in the distance we drove through to get to this area

Our 1000 Places to See book billed this area as a must see.  We thought the area would really have a 'wow' factor....meh, not so much.   Don't get us wrong, it is interesting, but nothing compared to Garden of the Gods in Colorado or even Elephant Rocks in Missouri.  The formations were noted by pioneers and used as a milestone for those on the California and Oregon Trails. 

The geology is a concentration of granite crags and promontories.  Quite a different landscape from the surrounding hills of sagebrush scrub land in southern Idaho.  There are hiking trails, camping and of course rock climbing.

Panoramic view of the City of Rocks area
 We will continue to look to our book for suggestions of places not to miss, but will definitely research the areas before heading off the main roads next time.

Local wildlife - road signs warned of 'migration area'

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