Jen had been in Boise for the week, the “littles” were at my parents, so the “bigs” and I decided to head out for some climbing. We decided to check out the Gold Fork Pins, a small area with multiple granite outcrops with a choice of different sport routes. The drive took us about 2 1/2 hours on consistently narrowing roads. By the time we hit our last road we were having to be careful to not scratch the sides of the suburban as we negotiated our route.
It was cool when we arrived, in the mid 40’s. We parked, grabbed our packs and climbing fear, and set out for the Terrapin, a large granite outcropping. It took us a little while to figure out where our destination was, but we finally figured out the lay of the land. We dropped our packs and started climbing.
Our first route was Sandy Line, a 5.7 slab climb. On the route it quickly became apparent where its name derived from as we climbed the crumbly granite. Each of the kids rotated through top roping the route. Our 60m rope was just barely long enough for lowers.
We next moved north on the rock to climb Lickety Split, another 5.7 route. Once again, each of the kids rotated through top roping the route. Darkening skies made this our last climb of the day. We shouldered our packs and walked east of the rock a ways before finding a small ridge with access to water where we hung our hammocks for the night.
Saturday dawned chilly, in the upper 20’s. We fixed breakfast before breaking camp and heading back over to the rock. We were on a bit of a time crunch for the day as Jen was due back at the house before too late. The chilly temps kept us moving slow as well.
We started back at Lickety Split. Wyatt thought this would be a good option for his first lead. He did a great job as he climbed barefoot on the chilly rock.
Our last climb of the morning was Sky Ladder, a 5.8. We finished the morning with each kid having had the opportunity to top rope and enjoy the great view from the top.
Our goal for the trip had been to explore the area and try and get in a climb or two. The trip was a fantastic success and as drove out we were already planning our return for after the snow melts.
See it Yourself: The Gold Fork Pins is a small area about 15 miles southeast of Donnelly. It is generally high quality granite and is definitely a hidden jewel. Parking and campsites are limited, and there is one section of the road in which I would hate to try and figure out how to pass another vehicle. The Klosoff guide has perhaps the best information on the area. If you do visit, please strive to keep your footprint small.