King Otto’s Castle ♦ Part 2

Indian Cove Campground

Indian Palisades Corridor

Feudal Wall ♦ Short Wall ♦ N00b Rock

Return to Indian Cove Main Index

(2D images first. 3D Galleries further down the page will require redcyan glasses to see the full 3D effect. Click Photos to Enlarge.)

Trek dates: 2017 Sep 24 & Oct 12

Feudal Wall, west end with Dark Shadows Rock nearest the camera

On This Part 2 Page

  • Indian Palisades Corridor
  • Dark Shadows Rock
  • Feudal Wall ♦ Short Wall
  • N00b Rock

King Otto’s Castle ♦ Part 1 Gallery

  • King Otto’s Castle
  • Don Genero Crack
  • Condor Rock ♦ Wonder Bluffs
  • “Adventures in Silverado” Movie Scenes

See Also

Johnson Canyon

Rattlesnake Canyon Picnic Area

Google Satellite Images

(Click to Enlarge)

KING OTTO’S CASTLE lies in the center of the campground, with sweeping vistas west (uphill) toward Moosedog Tower and to the south into the Rattlesnake Canyon wash below. Campsites dot the area, from #1 to 39. This area of Joshua Tree lies at an elevation of 3200ft. We note elsewhere how this is below the normal pine-tree line in Southern California (4000ft), which explains the absence of pinyon pines. It doesn’t explain why there are virtually no Joshua Trees to be found, however. Joshuas are common enough elsewhere at much lower elevations around the cities of Yucca Valley, Joshua Tree, and 29 Palms.

We now direct your attention to the massive jumble of formations rising a few hundred yards east of the Castle. The tallest is known as Indian Palisades Corridor, which is actually the back side of Varnished Wall (described in an earlier Gallery Page). Below it are (from left to right as you stand on the road, Willit Pillar, Dark Shadows Rock, Feudal Wall and Short Wall. (In the photograph above, Short Wall is blocked by an unnamed pile on the right.)

Further down the road in the direction of Rattlesnake Canyon picnic area is a final small granite mound once called The Chipped Wall, but now known by the name N00b Rock (with zeroes instead of the letter ‘o’ in the name).

Directly across from the Palisades-to-Feudal area, the great escarpment known as the Wonderland of Rocks impedes travel southward. It is here that can be found a fine-looking boulder-choked gorge known as Johnson Canyon (described in a later Gallery in this Indian Cove set of 3D photographs).

Wonderland of Rocks, Johnson Canyon area


2D Galleries

Indian Palisades Corridor

INDIAN PALISADES CORRIDOR in Indian Cove Campground is a large imposing wall. It lies to the right and behind Willit Pillar in a boulder filled canyon. All climbing routes are on the left wall of the corridor. Some of the better Palisades climbing routes are “Toe the Line,” “Willit Slab,” “Bitter Brew,” “Wheat Chex,” “Eyes of Amber,” “Chivalry’s Not Dead,” “Snakes in the Grass,” “Water Moccasin,” “Serpent Scales,” and “Cottonmouth.” Feudal Wall is directly in front of the corridor, and then, after a narrow passageway, the Short Wall.


Indian Palisades Corridor, East Side

Dark Shadows Rock

This small darkly varnished granite wall lies about 40 yards east of Willit Pillar, squeezed at the back of a nice campsite, across from an outhouse on the opposite side of the road. Four routes, all that face the road: “Anti-Gravity Acrobatics,” “Forgotten Galaxy,” “Forgotten Variation,” and “Nail ‘n Gravel.”

Feudal Wall

THE LARGE FEUDAL WALL formation lies above a small wash or canyon on the north of the road, and to the right (east) of Billboard Buttress and Willit Pillar. The low formation forming the south side of the wash is the Short Wall.

Feudal Wall (left) and Short Wall, from road

Climber on Coco-Loco. Photo by Blitzo

There are more than forty named routes on this highly complex face! describes the area on its website, “The Feudal Wall is one of the larger formations in Indian Cove that offers a number of lengthy, quality moderates (mostly cracks) as well as quick and easy access. The wall is split at mid-height by a large ledge system allowing for topropes to be easily set on the lower half, as well as providing a convenient way down which makes the area quite popular with large crowds of topropers.”

Some of the routes include: “Coyote in the Bushes,” “Pocket Pool,” “La Reina,” “Teenage Mutant Ninja Brits,” “Dutchess,” “Monaco,” “Coco-Loco,” “Not Just another Pretty Face,” “Crown Jewels,” “Dum Poodle,” and “Castles Burning.”

The Feudal Wall is the next to last wall you pass (it’s just before the Short Wall) as you follow the Indian Cove Road to the southeast through the family campsites and out towards Rattlesnake Canyon. Parking is available right at the base of the rock, so the approach is minimal, at the most.




Feudal Wall, East End

Short Wall

Short Wall, viewed against the Feudal Wall behind

Do not let the diminutive Short Wall fool you, it has more than two dozen routes from easy to very difficult, including some popular ones. This wall lies just south of the Feudal Wall. The smooth south face drew attention long ago. In fact, during the movie shoot for the 1948 Hollywood Western entitled “Adventures in Silverado,” there is one scene where the stage coaches go rumbling along the base of Short Wall in a blur of action.

A few of the climbing routes on this handsome little wall are “Double Trouble,” “Fluff Boy,” “Belay Girl,” “Pfundt’s Folly,” “Riff Raff Roof,” “Left V Crack,” “Right V Crack,” “Face to Face,” “Chockstone Chimney” (located in a chimney were there are a couple of big boulders blocking the way), “Toe Jam Express,” and “Steady Breeze.”

Short Wall from the 1948 Movie “Adventures in Silverado”’s Page on the Silverado-Joshua Tree Shots

(Click Photo to Embiggen)


Campsites #8-12 at East Side of Short Wall & Feudal Wall

N00b Rock

TWO.HUNDRED.40-7.POINT.8 FEET from Short Wall as the snake slithers is an ordinary, garden-variety, mousy looking outcrop known to posterity as N00b Rock—and extending southward from the N00b is a well-worn path out to the Wonderland of Rocks hillside where can be found the entrance to Johnson Canyon.

N00b Rock has three climbing routes on it—”Hamm’s Down” (a.k.a. Chip Suey), “N00ber Goober,” and a third which, due to its prurient name, I refuse to list here. Campsite 14 sits directly beneath said unbecomingly named route (see photograph with camp marker in the block below for confirmation)—while campsites 13-16 pretty much wrap around the miniature clump as the most easterly campsites in an otherwise open-desert schema.

It goes without saying, this being Indian Cove, that the views from N00b take your breath away, especially the peaks of the Wonderland and off to the left, the downgrade into Rattlesnake Canyon and picnic area.



  • Use glasses to view 3D Anaglyphs
  • Click to Enlarge Photos

3D Anaglyph Gallery

(Click images to enlarge. 1080p resolution. Or Windows users, right-click and choose SAVE LINK AS).




3D Half Side-by-Side Gallery

(Note: 3D H-SBS images should only be saved if you can view them on a 3D TV. Windows users, right-click and choose SAVE LINK AS.)



Thank you for visiting the second half of King Otto’s Castle formations at Indian Cove. May you enjoy your next visit to Joshua Tree all the more once you experience the area first-hand after previewing the formations in the 3D Galleries.

John Murbach

Temple City, California


Posted 2017 Nov 13