Imagine a place where the silence is so deafening that you can hear your heartbeat or the wind rushing through a raven’s wings. Imagine a place where the air carries the sweet fragrance of blooming mountain mahogany and wet sagebrush after a passing thunderstorm.
Imagine standing next to a 700-foot granite tower, eyes straining to see a soaring golden eagle flying circles around the summit. Such a place exists in southern Idaho’s Albion Mountains—City of Rocks.
In 1988, Congress created the 14,407-acre reserve, managed in partnership with the Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation. Composed of federal lands, state park lands, and private property, City of Rocks protects a relatively untouched landscape surrounding 6.2 miles of the California National Historic Trail. The reserve features grand geologic scenery that awed westward emigrants between 1843 and 1882.
Travelers today can retrace wagon ruts, see signatures written in axel grease on the pinnacles near where emigrants camped, and read journal accounts that connect us to this same sense of place. After all the hardship that emigrants had thus far experienced, City of Rocks offered a refreshing reprieve, a place of inspiration, and renewal of hope. City of Rocks is still such a place today.
The visitor center, located in Almo, Idaho, and the wayside exhibits, located along main roads throughout the park, provide opportunities to become acquainted with the Reserve’s historical significance and special resources.
There are 64 standard campsites with tables and fire rings. Most campsites also come equipped with a tent pad. Water stations and vault toilets are centrally located throughout the reserve.