Rosa gymnocarpa is a shrub growing up to 2 metres (6.6 ft) in height. Its stem is covered with long, straight spines which may or may not be abundant.
The pink or white fragrant flowers are flat and open-faced with five petals in most any shade of pink to almost lavender. Its fruit is a red rose hip containing hard tan achenes that contain the seeds. The sepals fall away from the hip earlier than in other species of rose, hence the name baldhip rose. The leaves are pinnately compound, alternate, with 5 to 9 leaflets, each of which are 1 to 4cm. Leaflets are elliptic to ovate to round. 
- "Rosa gymnocarpa". Natural Resources Conservation Service PLANTS Database. USDA. Retrieved 23 October 2015.
- "Rosa gymnocarpa | Landscape Plants | Oregon State University". landscapeplants.oregonstate.edu. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
- Media related to Rosa gymnocarpa at Wikimedia Commons
- Data related to Rosa gymnocarpa at Wikispecies
- Jepson Manual Treatment - Rosa gymnocarpa
- USDA Plants Profile: Rosa gymnocarpa
- Rosa gymnocarpa - Photo gallery of plant, flowers and hips