You, God, and an endless string of power poles

City of Rocks National Reserve, Almo, Idaho

There is beauty in desolation.  A beauty that sparks a renewal of the soul, sends the heart on a fleeting journey of freedom, and instills a sense of consciousness.  You know the place . . . it’s where the land stretches to the four quarters of the earth and nothing is there but you, God, and an endless string of power poles.

The roadway stretches like duct tape fused to the landscape.  Nonexistent highway markings forewarn the traveler of impending desolation.  Eventually, signs and mileposts disappear; homes and ranches are now a figment of imagination.  There’s nothing here, but the barren beauty of loneliness.

A monolith of granite

Life’s journey through desolation leads us to our destination, and so too does the road to the City of Rocks.  This is not a destination for the feeble-hearted.  This is an area so remote that you must have an unwarranted desire to get there.  But, the reward is the experience of remoteness, because after all the isolated miles of travel, you arrive at a city not like any other.  The buildings are monolithic outcrops of granite poking through the earth’s crust like terrestrial whiteheads, begging to be pinched under foot by  Vibram-soled rock climbers.

Sagebrush peppers the landscape.  The roads are mere trails of hard-packed earth, looping between granitic outcrops.  Aspen trees speckle the sparse forest of pinyon, juniper and yellow pine.  Gone are the days of pioneer travel through the City of Rocks, but the relentless, unending landscape of desolation has yet to relinquished it’s godforesaken character on the modern-day traveler.

42°04’34”N 113°42’06”W

Further information:


City of Rocks Idaho, 7th: A Climber’s Guide

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About © Rita Boehm

Copyright 2015 Rita Boehm. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Photographs, artwork, and/or related text are available for licensing. Contact writer for further information
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