Our lives now include living at one of the nicest senior communities in the USA. Rossmoor in Walnut Creek, CA. We will still travel in the RV but not full time.

Archive for the ‘Southern Idaho’ Category

Home on the Range

Wow, did I get to see some Idaho I had never known was even there.  What an amazing evening at the Lish Ranch, 20 miles up canyon roads from Pocatello, Idaho and into dry farming high country .  Met people who still have the family homestead their grandfather or great grandfather started in late 1800’s.  Good friends of my nephew Karson who worked for Shawn with the guys in the photos. Karole and Ken have become friends too and Ken has worked with Sadie laying tile and working out rooms in the basement for the girls.  What an incredible family and I just wish I had taken a photo of beautiful wife and mother, Sadie.

We have been told any time we want to take the motor home out there and park and hook up-do it.  Yeah!

You ought to double click on some of the scenes so they blow up and you can feel the country.

Fires for the Family Reunion at Easley’s just north of Ketchum!

Boy OH Boy do I have a few stories to share.  Kassi’s 21st birthday was last Tuesday. Kay and Todd bought a new trailer, every one of my siblings and other family showed up to camp at Easley Hot Springs.  We had 4 camp sites and Karole and Kenny brought their 2 ATVs. The entertainment was Westin and Reagan-who at 2 years of age  and 6 months old were about all it took.  Scott’s other son, Nik arrived for one day, Karole’s sister in law from Boise the last day, and Karole’s friend, Teri drove from Ellensburg to meet up with us.

Yes, we knew the forest were burning and smoke would be everywhere around us, but what could we do?  When Russ and I arrived, Kay and Todd with Kassi chomping at the bit- wanted us to go into Ketchum (Sun Valley) to eat and celebrate- after all you only turn 21 once.  Todd was a good sport and matched Kassi shot for shot for for the first three, and of course Kassi’s were free.  The Pioneer Inn (please, God, let it survive) was our life long favorite for dining.  But Kassi wanted a bar bar-found 1!  We played pool and drug her back to camp  to meet up with everyone.  Russ and I were designated drivers of course.

My grandad had a cabin-back in the day- near by and we used to follow a trail to the wonderful natural hot springs pool.  It still was there with something extra, ashes!.  But we swam and exercised and played with the babies in it.  Kassi survived the birthday and went fishing with Uncle Todd and Kenny, her dad and mom.  They went way into the wilderness on an old old road that went from Sun Valley to Mackey.  You will need a map!  Kay and Todd in waders worked the river, Ken and Kassi sat on the bridge.  When Kay and Todd returned with their 4 trout, Ken and Kassi held up 20 and Kassi had caught the big one.  If you want to know what to do with real trout, call my brother in law Todd.  OMG!!!!  What a great dinner we had that night.

The Beaver Creek fire had started that 2nd day and joined the others.  

So from then on, we were in heavy smoke and ash.  Still we kept in touch with the Forest Service fire crews and they told us we could go over Galena Summit to Red Fish Lake-as they would not call for an evacuation before that evening.  Fearing we might get back to burned out homes, we still went to Red Fish and had a wonderful afternoon.  Russ and I got in a bike ride, the others a boat trip, before the smoke from the other side blew in to us- so we headed back to camp.  Huge plumes of smoke could be seen all the way to Galena Summit and we were in dark smoke into camp.  So of course we went swimming.  Met with firemen who said our campground would probably burn up in the next morning, possible the wonderful ancient pools, buildings and cabins.  We slept expecting to be routed out of bed, but they did not tell us to evacuate until 8:30 AM and we were ready to get out.  In the mean time everything else got out of hand and by the time we got to the RV water and dump in Haily my brother was standing there calling all of us to say-do not stop at Sun Valley for lunch, get the hell down here, they are closing the highway to Galena (now behind us) and evacuating Sun Valley and Ketchum and all the valley towns.

We all got out of the Valley ahead of the bumper to bumper parade behind us.  Meanwhile Scott tells us that the fire on the tops of the mountains on the West Side of Highway 75 was feared to jump the highway which would completely wipe out the towns and spread to the Mackey wilderness area and the White Clouds and so on.

Well as of this moment we have not heard that it has gotten past the highway-but it tried several times and was put out so far.  This fire was 30 miles long !!!  It was jumping from canyon to canyon and burning up multi million dollar homes and ranches.  Did you know that the people who insure Sun Valley and some of the multi million dollar homes and ranches have their own teams of fire fighters that they have sent to to try and save the big resorts, etc ?  New one on me.

Will stop this blog now and send another one soon.

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The Lost River Valleys and Mountains near Mackay, Idaho

What an incredible weekend high up above 8000 feet.  Above Mackay the White Knob Mountains have old mines and ghost towns and great trails for ATVs.  For those of you who want all wilderness to be only for hikers, etc. let me tell you, those of us who can no longer climb the mountains and never could have gotten deep into the wilderness, this is a heavenly way to enjoy nature.  There are so many miles of wilderness in Idaho that most Idahoans have never seen, you cannot believe it when you finally have the experiences.

My sister Karole and her husband Ken, bought a toy hauler and it can sleep at least 6 comfortably.  Ken’s brother and his wife Sue, have a cabin they maintain for some Utah family, so there is a cabin for them and the trailer for us on beautiful farmland and under trees.  Karole and I joined the guys Saturday AM as she is the news anchor for Local News 8 in Idaho Falls and worked late Friday night.

Karole and Ken bought a Polaris Razor which is so much easier to drive on the mountain trails as it is narrow and can get onto trails with narrow gates.  Also you are not sitting astride with windburns on your face.  Two seats and room to put dogs and food on the back. A friend of Karole’s loaned us his razor and we were set.

We saw incredible country and views.  Russ, not one to avoid heightening the adventure was driving when we hit a ground up slate trail up the side of same mountain.  He really did not realize how loose the “gravel” was and we stopped in time not to slide and roll down a mountain.  However, there was no way to get back onto the trail, cause the gravel just rolled away under us.  Out comes the coil of steel wires on the wench, Russ climbs up the mountain and ties us to a huge pine tree, Kenny drives and after some moments we are on the trail.  Meanwhile Sue on the 4wheeler ahead goes to the top, turns around and comes back to tell us the trail is not a good idea for us, so we have to figure how to back down.  I drive with Russ and Sue yelling directions so that I do not slide off the mountain or ride up on the other side.  Anyway Russ and I learned a lot, saw a lot and really had fun.

Weather cooler up high, but the half hour drive coming down and home at the bottom was 95 degrees of hot.

Looking for some exciting place to go-check out this website and go where very few people go.  http://www.mackayidaho.com/linked%20docs/LostRiverValleyBrochure.pdf

 

Lava Hot Springs Near Wyoming, Idaho Border Rises to Its Potential

The land around Lava Hot Springs

Montpelier, Soda Springs and Lava Hot Springs usually mean you have arrived from Wyoming into South Eastern Idaho. It is actually beautiful to me. High rolling sagebrush and grassland-much of it farmed wheat. Harsh winters, and hot summers. Grandpa Gilbert used to take us to the hot springs to swim in the 1950’s cause it is close to Pocatello. Then when my sister Karole was raising her three sons, we took them to Lava to swim too.

 

Well this time it was just Russ and I with three nights to spare so we stopped at the Lava Hot Springs KOA Campground now owned by a local couple who are burning their candles at both ends, fixing up and making an old campground on the river, be beautiful, serviceable and a great place for travelers to stop. Not only that, but it seems Southern Utah has fallen in love with it for their family weekends. Good fishing-the old hot tubs fixed up, the garden paths around the historic resort are lava rock specific and very cool. The stores now attract visitors and are open on Sunday. Also coffee and would you old time Idahoans believe that there is a latte stand on the corner. OMG!

Water slides for families and tubing and rafting down the river. We loved it and will return.

 

Must mention stopping at Montpelier at the Oregon Trail Memorial. Great paintings that I believe Simplot had done. They depicted all my favorite southern Idaho spots as they were in the days of the Oregon Trail Expeditions. Nice people and lots of tourists stop there, too. I recommend it.

 

Stopped here with 200 bicyclists who had done 100 mile rides in the mountains

Stopped here with 200 bicyclists who had done 100 mile rides in the mountains

Painting of Thousand Springs where I went swimming in my teens, Hagerman Valley.

Painting of Thousand Springs where I went swimming in my teens, Hagerman Valley.

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Garden walk above hot springs

Garden walk above hot springs

lava rock-garden carved out of it

lava rock-garden carved out of it

great old building with holly hocks

great old building with holly hocks

High dive scares everyone, had a ball watching the 10 minute before diving and then the 45 minute!

High dive scares everyone, had a ball watching the 10 minute before diving and then the 45 minute!

Young kids walking the strap.

Young kids walking the strap.

KOA we loved in Lava

KOA we loved in Lava

New chairs for the motor home

New chairs for the motor home

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