City of Rocks National Reserve

  • Mountain landscape



City of Rocks Information

The smooth granite faces at City of Rocks National Reserve offer exceptional rock climbing, with over 500 climbing routes have been identified.

But it's really the history of this special place that gives it the remarkable feeling of stepping back through time.

"We encamped at the city of the rocks, a noted place from the granite rocks rising abruptly out of the ground," wrote James Wilkins in 1849. "They are in a romantic valley clustered together, which gives them the appearance of a city." Wilkins was among the first wagon travelers to fix the name City of Rocks to what looked like "a dismantled, rock-built city of the Stone Age."

California Trail pioneers were leaving civilization as they knew it in the East for new lives in the West. Some wrote their names in axle grease on rock faces, and their signatures can be seen today. This unique geologic area became a landmark in 1843 for California-bound emigrants. A few granite pinnacles and monoliths are in excess of sixty stories tall and 2.5 billion years old.

Making an Impact

Visiting City of Rocks

Map of the Park

City of Rocks National Reserve
P.O. Box 169
Almo , ID

Parks Near City of Rocks National Reserve

Outdoor image of Minidoka National Historic Site ledge
A former internment camp in Idaho, Minidoka now stands as a memorial to the nearly 10,000 Japanese Americans forced to relocate here during World War II.
Hagerman Fossil Beds view
Hagerman Fossil Beds National Monument, a national park in Idaho, contains the largest concentration of Hagerman Horse fossils in North America.
Rocky landscape
One of four national parks in Idaho, President Calvin Coolidge created Craters of the Moon National Monument on May 2, 1924.
Great Basin Park views
This national park is home to ancient bristlecone pine trees, abundant wildlife, lakes and streams, and limestone caverns, including the stunning Lehman Caves.
From the Blog

From the Blog

Support Our Parks
The protection of our national parks is a job we can all do. Our parks need the support of people like you who love and visit them.