I have two lists I use when packing for TourAlongs:
- The Drumming TourAlongs List.
- The Vacation TourAlongs List.
TourAlong lists make packing easy.
Imagine my flummoxification as I prepared for a Climbing TourAlong. I hadn't packed for a trip like this in years!
What do we need?
- Tent? Yes
- Sleeping bags? Of course
- Foam pads? Clearly
- Blankets too? Well Duh!
- Fluffy pillows? HEY! WE'RE NOT CAVE PEOPLE!
- Suit cases, climbing gear tote, road trip tote, towels, pots, cups, camp stove, dish soap, kitchen sink, and two coolers?
Holy Household, Batman! That's one crammed Subaru!
But there Natalie and I were: Thursday morning, 10:00 a.m., Jackie and Jack Kerouac hittin' the road and not stoppin' for anything.
Until it was time to eat...
Are you Hungry?
Join me at the TourAlong's picnic table for bite-sized picture-caption morsels!
Let's begin... Shall we?
I kid you not: The bathroom sign at Taco Bandido. Something tells me this is the universal sign for, "Stand back amigos, something's about to blow!"
|Lynn Clark mastering a granite slab at Castle Rocks, a sister climbing area of the City proper and every bit as good. Slab climbing never looks steep... until you're the one looking down.|
Suzie and her daughter, Bradi, run Rock City Mercantile in Almo.
Almo is filled with juxtapositions. It's down-home rural Idaho and Mormon; it's often overrun with rock climbers and campers; and it manages to maintain a sleepy feel. There's not much in Almo, yet it has exactly what you need.
Suzie and Bradi run a tight ship at Rock City—in their unique way. Every table, inside or out, starts with a "Reserved" sign. That's because you have to check-in with Suzie and order your pizza. THEN you can sit down at a "reserved" table.
What do you want to drink? Go to the cooler and grab your beer, wine, water, or pop. Drink it! Just keep the empties on your table so they can be tallied up when you check out. It's a super easy, efficient system.
And then there's the pizza. Four small, modern ovens crank out the best thin crust pizza I've had this side of Corsica. They are really, really good.
Suzie, Bradi, and everyone at Rock City are cool.
You should eat pizza and shop there.
At the northern foot of Cache Peak rests Albion, Idaho. Did you know "Albion" is the archaic name for Great Britain? It IS! And, from 1893 to 1951, the Albion Normal School awarded 6,460 teaching degrees, including one to Terrance Bell, who served as Secretary of Education in President Reagan's original cabinet. And get this: The school's athletic teams were known as the "Teachers" until 1935.
The haunted mansion was not open the Sunday we passed through on our way home, but come on!... Haunted Mansions of Albion, a SCHOOL of CHAOS... how cool is that! Complete with crowned skulls no less!
Packing list or not, we had exactly what we needed at the City and, thanks to Suzie and Bradi at Rock City Mercantile, we never had to warm up the cans of beef stew as the sun set slowly in the west. Nope! We had pizza, salad, and beer.
For a weekend, all was well in the world.
From Jack and Jackie Kerouac, Rock On!
Stay tuned... More from TourAlongWithTodd is coming soon...
Until then... Ciao!
On the path to Castle Rocks. Some of the best Idaho has to offer.