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City of Rocks – Geological Interpretive Trail
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Overview
Location

City of Rocks National Reserve

Sights

Lots of different geology features

Distance

1.2 Miles

Parking Lot Elevation

5970 ft

Summit Elevation

Varies

Elevation Gain/Loss

Not more than -/+ 120 feet

Time Required

30-60 Minutes

Pets

Allowed on leash

Fees

Free

Water Info

Bring 1-2 liters

Best Season

Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter is accessible by 4×4

Hours

Open year round

Sun Exposure

Lots of sun exposure

Trail Condition

Dirt Path

Restrooms

At parking lot

Visitor Center

Yes

Camping

Yes

Food

Bring some snacks and a meal depending on what activity you are doing.

Equipment

Bring hiking shoes, camera, light jacket

GPS Coordinates

Trailhead: 42.09321 N, 113.70950 W

Trail Map:

IMG_2500


Driving Directions: 

The trailhead parking lot is located at the end of the Circle Creek Overlook road inside the reserve. This road is steep and thin but most of the year could be driven in any vehicle. In winter conditions 4×4 is neccesary to get through the snow or mud.


The Trail:

There is a large parking area with an outhouse.

1

Right by the parking lot is the sign marking the start of the trail.

2

Make sure you stop by the visitor center and pick up the trail pamphlet that gives you all the different information about what you can see on this trail. You can also download it on your phone. This trail highlights all of the different features and teaches you about how and why City of Rocks is the way it is. There are 12 different informative stations to see on the hike. I will show pictures of each feature but you’ll just have to do the hike to learn what each thing is. Its about a ten minute walk before you reach the first station. There is a beautiful overlook and you can see the Twin Sisters off in the distance.

3

The first stop is Granite Weathering

4

Panholes

5 6

Tafoni

7

Joints

8

Panholes

9 10

Intrusive Contact

11 12

Xenolith

13 14

Window

15

16

Boulders

17 18

Joints

19 20

Pickelhaube

21 22

Pinnacles

24

The Return: 

Go back to the car the same way you walked in. I had fun picking out things I had learned on the way back.


Personal Thoughts:

I found this trail to be a lot of fun. I learned a lot of new cool information about the area and learned stuff I then could pick out at all the other areas of the reserve I visited. This would be an easy hike for kids as well with lots of chances to play around on the rocks and it has some very beautiful scenery and I saw lots of rabbits running around.

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Ratings (out of 10)
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User Rating
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Difficulty
3.0
Technicality
4.0
Enjoyment
6.0
The Bottom Line

Difficulty is basically the length, duration and stress of the Trek.  If the Trek is really long then it will receive a higher rating. If the Trek is short then it won't receive that high of a rating. However, difficulty rating also includes how tired we were at the end of the Trek.

Technicality is how strenuous the Trek is. If there is lots of bouldering or if there is bushwhacking involved then the rating will be higher. Technicality also includes if there are steep inclines or the need for ropes and other equipment.

Enjoyment is strictly how much fun we had doing the Trek. Regardless of how tired and exhausted we were, if we had a ton of fun doing the Trek then it will receive a higher rating.

6.3
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About The Author
Josh1990
I love adventure! I live in Cache Valley, Utah. Do you have questions on any of my Treks? Email me @ joshua.oyler@gmail.com

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