Fall Time Adventures in the City of Rocks

^^Our Saturday evening view of Castle Rocks State Park just adjacent to the City of Rocks^^

The City of Rocks has become our playground!  We have spent every Saturday over the last month rock climbing the giant granite slabs there out in the desert.   Rock climbing is an addicting sport!  I know we'll never amount to anything competitive, but the challenge and adrenaline rush are what keep us going back.  That, and the chance to completely unplug from the world.  There is absolutely no cell service in the desert.  Instead, the kids run around, climb, explore, and play imaginative games while we adults get a chance to talk and laugh and challenge ourselves on the rocks.  It's kind of dreamy when I write it all out.  

Bron and I feel so lucky to have some of the best of friends whom are willing to teach us the ropes--literally.  Thanks Horsleys!  Without them, we wouldn't be out there.  I am so happy for the opportunity I have to develop new talents and interests in my adulthood because honestly, it never occurred to me until recently that it is totally possible/plausible.  Plus, I love that these weekend adventures and sports are becoming commonplace for my children.  Jed and Levi look forward to them with great enthusiasm!  I can totally see the four of us loading up the truck one day with bikes and climbing gear and who knows what else to disappear for a few days.  Yup, that's my idea of a perfect weekend: wholesome recreational activities for the whole family and a lifetime of good memories.  Glad we're already getting a head start.

So without further ado, a gob of photos from the past month...

This giant granite mountain boulder is known as Bread Loaf.  We climbed it two weekends in a row and conquered three different routes.  The challenge was a bit humbling.  And I can't believe how incredibly HIGH we got up there!  Whoa.  But I suppose that is what is so liberating about using ropes and harnesses; I get to do something I normally wouldn't do with minimal risk to myself.  See that tiny smear of blue?  That's our friend Aaron.

^^Bron and I taking on the 5.9 route^^
^^Mini man chalking up his hands in preparation to climb!  Levi insisted.  It was so cute.^^
^^Our friend Shelly.  Also, Levi learning what it feels like to leeeaan back to repel.  "It's like flying!"  Haha.^^

Jed has a love/hate relationship with rock climbing.  It's a funny cycle.  Jed begins by getting super excited to climb.  At about eight feet high he freaks out.  We lower him to the ground safely, he calms down, but then he's ready to climb again!  Silly kid.

^^Levi and Easton showing off their 'hulk smash' muscles.^^
^^What do YOU look like after you eat an entire bag of M&M's?  This kid is sooo messy, but he makes me laugh.^^
^^Bron's first lead climb.  I'm so proud of him.  Don't let that rock fool you.  It looks like 'child's play' but we were smearing with our hands and feet all the way up!^^
^^Bron conquered!  Also, how incredible is that backdrop for play?^^
^^Bright orange and lime green moss?  I was blown away by how uniquely pretty the desert was!^^
^^ Insert theme from Mission Impossible!  Hahaha.^^
^^Aaron and Amy.  Amy is one tenacious gal.  It's so fun to watch her climb!^^

We went camping over the weekend.  Camping sure is a lot of work for a crappy night's sleep (it was freeeezing cold!) but the countless stars, roasted marshmallows, and fresh air adventures will no doubt keep me coming back.  Plus, the little boys enjoyed it a hundred times more than I did.  The looks on their happy little faces made it all worth it.

^^Bacon for breakfast.  Mmmm!  Pull my arm, I'll go camping again.^^
^^The kids ate a lesser meal of sugary cereal for breakfast.  They thought they were luckiest ducks!^^
^^Addy.  She's like my favorite little girl.  She lets me cuddle and spoil her.^^

I took the kids exploring around the campsite.  We spied a young buck and avoided stepping on some cacti.  Then Levi collected an armful of these sticky golden pine cones.  He insisted that we make them into bird feeders--you know, just as all the birds are flying south for the winter.  But who am I to disappoint a curly haired three year old?

Hope to see you again soon, City of Rocks!


  1. This looks like so much fun! I am curious to know what lens you use for your everyday life photos?

  2. It looks amazing. How far is it from your house?Did you guys get rock climbing equipment? It looks like you have the shoes. You are simply inspirational. I'm so glad you are exposing the boys to all of this....They will have the best childhood.

  3. Your photos make the desert look beautiful! You have such talent!


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