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rangertommy

Smith Rock Camping

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Hey all,

 

I'm heading down to Smith for several days of climbing during the first week of June. Any of you regulars know if I'll be fighting for a spot, or a parking space, in the walk-in camp, if I'm getting there on a Monday? Also, feel free to throw in any other camping beta if you feel compelled to.

 

Thanks!

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You will have a fine selection of sites.

 

I assume you are talking about Climber's Bivouac? Bring a towel. They have showers.

 

Check out Skull Hollow/Grasslands. It's free, but there is no water. Only a couple outhouses.

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Decide what you are into. The Bivouac is quiet and doesn't allow fires. Skull Hollow allows fires and has all night parties. If you want to get an early start on your climbs, I suggest the Biviouac.

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Thanks, Fender. Yeah, I'm talking about the Climber's Bivouac. I don't mind shelling out a few bucks for parking and crashing, given its proximity to the rock.

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I dissagree....walk in camping sucks, I would rather sit on my bumper and drink then walk 300 feet and drink.

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Last month there was a sign up at skulls hollow about it possibly becoming a pay area. I don't know if that sign is always up as an encouragement to keep the place clean or if that is actually a possibility. I just thought I'd mention it in case someone plans on camping for free and ends up with a surprise.

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I agree with the K-bone.

 

Skull Hollow is the place to be. The walk-in place is for old farts wanting to play with all their newly bought REI crap. :)

 

Why pay for camping when it's free and only about 2 minutes down the road. The place really isn't that much of a party zone anyway it's just a bit more lively some nights.

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I spent New Years Eve 2000 at the grasslands and it was packed, and snow was on the ground. It felt like a big shake down street. Random climbers and camper roaming around, everyone being nice and friendly sharing there weed…..uh ….I mean beer with each other. I will never forget that night.

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It was lively the times we've been there but with all the heavy camping goods (BBQ grill, chairs, coolers...) the walk-in camping woulda sucked. Plus, big fire with marshmallows and beer...mmmmm.

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Well...I did get my tent at REI years ago, my wife does work there, and I am 49...but still--I'm suddenly finding myself in the middle of an existential camping crisis. Who knew such controversy existed? I'm reading with baited breath for the next installment touting the virtues of one camp over the other. Thanks!

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I spent New Years Eve 2000 at the grasslands and it was packed, and snow was on the ground. It felt like a big shake down street. Random climbers and camper roaming around, everyone being nice and friendly sharing there weed…..uh ….I mean beer with each other. I will never forget that night.

I'm surprised you remeber it! :toad:

I've only stayed at skull hollow and it's been fine, but i've heard that when wind picks up, the bivy stays relatively calm, could be a major bonus when cooking.

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I spent July 4th in that campground about four years ago. It was wierd weather and no one else was there. The clouds were a strange shape and were red with yellow shot through them. I had forgotten about that night until last month when I ended up in the same spot. Strange.

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Camping right at Smith used to be cool back in the old days when you could crash right on the picnic benches. Now you have to pay to camp at their, "special," camping site. The only thing it has going for it is they have showers, but even without camping you can still show up and fork over a couple bucks and take a shower if you want to.

 

Skull Hollow rules. :tup: of course the politically incorrect name is Skullfuck Hollow.

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of course the politically incorrect name is Skullfuck Hollow.
skull

Why do you think this skull is smiling so big?

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Personally I like the campers bivuac. We've left our stoves on the picnic tables and never had any thievery. Drink beer there too almost every night and never had any hassles. If you get there on a weekday you can get one of the spots to the right by the bluffs and wake up to stellar views of the climbing area. Plus all you do in the morning is brew your coffe and then throw on your pack and in 10-15 minutes your at the climb area.

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While I'm sure there's parties, I've never had a problem. Even over the 4th of July when I though the place was going to be a zoo.

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Here's my 2 cents: If you have a parking permit already the Hollow is the place to be, and way more fun with fires and all. But, seeing that it's $3 to park at Smith and only $4 to camp (including a shower normally $2) that may be the way to go. I personally like the grasslands, but I may stay at the bivy if I had no season pass.

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cdomsch has a good point - If you're gonna have to pay for daily parking anyway, just stay @ the bivy site & get a better deal.

 

But, the hollow is certainly a more easy & social place to camp. if you think the late night noise will bother you, just bring ear plugs. you'll want them in the morning anyway when the cows are walking next to your campsite waking you up.

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Thanks cd and hemp. I'm kinda bringin' a mini social scene with me, and meeting others there, so that's not a problem. But are y'all saying that I'm a lot less likely to be around other climbers in the "climber's bivouac" than at Skull Hollow? I mean, is the climber's bivouac that in name only? Thanks again for all the input.

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I really haven't had any issues with people and their parties at skull hollow. The only thing thats ever bothered us was when some dumbass brings his stupid bongo drums and bongo's all freaking night. At that point though everybody, even those still up told him to shut up.

 

It's usually windy and most voices doing carry, except for the bongos. Heck, most of the time people aren't always partying all night.

 

I think the climber's bivouac is filled mostly with people who don't know the area and are traveling through for day hiking or maybe stopping to climb but are from out of town. If you want to meet other climbers and possibly find out more on Smith I say go to skull hollow.

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I've always stayed at the bivy because i like the hot shower in the morning, but last time (2 weeks ago) there were about a million canadian geese making a shitload of noise that woke us up at 5 am every day.

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