scenic drive up to Smith Rock - part 1
According to Wikipedia.....
The geology of Smith Rocks is volcanic. It is made up of layers of recent basalt flows overlaying older Clarno ash and tuff formations. Approximately 30million years ago, a large caldera was formed when overlying rock collapsed into an underground lava chamber. This created a huge amount of rock and ash debris that filled the caldera. That material solidified into rock, becoming Smith Rock tuff.
A half million years ago, basalt lava flows from nearby volcanoes covered the older tuff.
More recently, the Crooked River cut its way through the layers of rock to create today's geographic features. Smith Rock itself is a 3,200-foot (980m)-high ridge (above sea level) with a sheer cliff-face overlooking a bend in the Crooked River (elev. 2600 ft), making the cliffs about 600 feet high.>>>
Although Smith Rock appears to be a good place to do rock climbing, it seems a rather bold statement that it's the birthplace of modern rock climbing. But who knows, it could actually be true.
In any event, it's a nice drive north of Bend to the Smith Rock state park. The rocks are pretty to view, and there are several trails through the rocks that were of more interest to me.
Just for fun, I did climb up on the 8 foot tall rock climbing practice wall by the road, and although I thought I was in pretty good shape, it's clear to me that rock climbing could be very useful for an exercise to add to my list of things that I do to keep in shape. I found that my arms were strong, but not quite as strong as I would have liked them to be to hold my weight up in space, but my fingers were not as strong as needed.
So although I was able to struggle up one side of the climbing wall, it was only 8 feet, and it was clear that I needed a goodly amount of exercise of fingers and arms, and other muscles in order to be strong enough to rock climb. I think rock climbing is too risky for sane folks, but being strong enough to do it seems like a pretty good idea.
One could also do technical climbing on these rocks as well if one wanted to do so.
The smith rock area is a nice place to visit for walking, picnicing, climbing of various types, and just sightseeing.
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Last Update: Oct 31, 2016
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