2011 Southwestern USA travel blog

Riggins, ID - Canyon Pines RV Resort - site 31

Riggins, ID - Canyon Pines RV Resort - site 31, another view,...

Riggins, ID - Canyon Pines RV Resort - site 31, the Little...

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 0 - our route - 204 miles

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 1 - starting a long grade up...

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 2

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 3 - starting back down

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 4 - did I say this is...

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 5

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 6

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 7 - the valley below where we...

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 8 - the Payette River which we...

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 9 - Lots of rafting on the...

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 10 - defintely a lot of white...

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 11

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 12

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 13

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 14

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 15 - still plenty of snow to...

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 16 - a little slice of Florida...

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 17 - no, it didn't crash, they...

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 18 - touristy McCall, ID business district

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 19

Mountain Home to Riggins, ID 20 - lots of twisty, turny on...

Windy Saddle Trip 0 - our route - 54 miles

Windy Saddle Trip 1 - this is where we are headed

Windy Saddle Trip 2 - ran out of pavement and will now...

Windy Saddle Trip 3 - it seems the road gets narrower and...

Windy Saddle Trip 4 - getting close to the top now

Windy Saddle Trip 5 - we are at Windy Saddle now -...

Windy Saddle Trip 6 - some of the views from Windy Saddle

Windy Saddle Trip 7

Windy Saddle Trip 8

Windy Saddle Trip 9

Windy Saddle Trip 10

Windy Saddle Trip 11

Windy Saddle Trip 12

Windy Saddle Trip 13

Windy Saddle Trip 14

Windy Saddle Trip 15 - still a lot of snow up here

Pittsburg Landing Trip 0 - our route - 102 miles

Pittsburg Landing Trip 1 - the salmon are running and the sides...

Pittsburg Landing Trip 2

Pittsburg Landing Trip 3

Pittsburg Landing Trip 4 - one of the restaurants in Riggins

Pittsburg Landing Trip 5 - the Salmon River after the Little Salmon...

Pittsburg Landing Trip 6 - just started up the mountain and didn't...

Pittsburg Landing Trip 7

Pittsburg Landing Trip 8

Pittsburg Landing Trip 9 - getting close to the top

Pittsburg Landing Trip 10 - views from the top

Pittsburg Landing Trip 11 - that's part of the road back down...

Pittsburg Landing Trip 12

Pittsburg Landing Trip 13 - the Snake River at Pittsburg Landing

Pittsburg Landing Trip 14 - wildflowers on the trip

Pittsburg Landing Trip 15

Pittsburg Landing Trip 16

Pittsburg Landing Trip 17

Pittsburg Landing Trip 18

Pittsburg Landing Trip 19

Pittsburg Landing Trip 20

Pittsburg Landing Trip 21

Pittsburg Landing Trip 22 - a mule deer along the way

Pittsburg Landing Trip 23

Pittsburg Landing Trip 24 - rafters on the Salmon River

Pittsburg Landing Trip 25

Pittsburg Landing Trip 26

Pittsburg Landing Trip 27 - this guy was right behind the restaurant...

Pittsburg Landing Trip 28 - a lone horse on the side of...

Pittsburg Landing Trip 29 - a beautifu fall on the highway about...

Warren, ID Trip 0 - our route 189 miles

Warren, ID Trip 1 - the Payette River on the way to...

Warren, ID Trip 2 - some wildlife in the meadow

Warren, ID Trip 3 - some of the buildings in Warren

Warren, ID Trip 4

Warren, ID Trip 5

over 100 years old and it looks it

Warren, ID Trip 7

Warren, ID Trip 8

Warren, ID Trip 9 - some pretty unique supports

Warren, ID Trip 10 - a very fancy dog house

Warren, ID Trip 11

Warren, ID Trip 12 - the old schoolhouse

Warren, ID Trip 13

Warren, ID Trip 14 - the Warren airstrip - this and snowmobile...

Warren, ID Trip 15 - we have now climbed the mountain on...

Warren, ID Trip 16

Warren, ID Trip 17

Warren, ID Trip 18 - some of the road down

Warren, ID Trip 19

Warren, ID Trip 20 - this is one-way, right - Nope, just...

Warren, ID Trip 21 - coming back from Warren

Warren, ID Trip 22

Warren, ID Trip 23 - Payette Lake outside McCall

Warren, ID Trip 24 - typical Idaho ranch land in the valley

Warren, ID Trip 25

Warren, ID Trip 26

Warren, ID Trip 27 - the Little Salmon River coming through a...

Warren, ID Trip 28

Warren, ID Trip 29

It was a 204 mile drive from Mountain Home AFB to our campground nine miles South of Riggins, ID. We went through some very different terrain than we have in previous trips. We first climbed over a mountain range and then came down into a beautiful valley with the Payette River flowing through it. All of the rivers in the area are very swollen with all of the snow-melt and will remain that way for some time we figure just looking at all of the snow still on the mountains.

We are staying at the Canyon Pines RV Resort which is just seven years old and one of the nicest we have stayed in. The campground is located right on the Little Salmon River and they have two pull-through sites that are broadside to the river so that you are about 30 feet from the shoreline when you step out the right side your rig. There are a number of other sites right on the river but they are backs-ins though I guess you could pull straight in but the hookups would be on the wrong side then. We have 50 amps and water but no sewer at the site though they have a double dump station approachable from either direction. This area has no cell service of any kind though they tell us AT&T is available nine miles North in Riggins. The campground does have a phone jack at each utility post and you can hook your telephone handset to it and receive calls when the caller dials the campground number and then enters your site number as the extension. Local outgoing calls can also be made or calling card long distance as well. The satellite was easily locked in as most of the trees are along the river which is West of the campsites.

Saturday we went out on two trips. The first was the 54 mile trip up the mountains to our West to Windy Saddle. Most of the ride is on gravel roads so Libby was happy. The views at the top were breathtaking though we couldn't reach the best views obtainable at Heaven's Gate Overlook due to there still being too much snow and the road blocked.

We then came back down the mountain and headed Northwest to Pittsburg Landing. This is a boat landing on the Snake River which requires a lengthy trip over these same mountains to the West and then back down to the valley. It was 102 miles and also involved a lot of gravel roads but gave us some wonderful views as well.

Sunday we made the 189 mile round trip to Warren, ID. Warren is an old mining town that has now become a place for Summer homes, much like Silver City we visited while in Mountain Home. It has a lot of character and we were able to have a lengthy conversation with the National Forest volunteer that comes there every Summer to man the visitor center. He normally gets there about Memorial Day every year but there was so much snow so late this year that he was only able to get there July 1st. He also said he usually leaves about mid October when the nights are about 10° on a regular basis.

After talking to him we embarked on a search for the Chinese gardens. The Chinese were instrumental in the mining phase of this area as most of the American miners quit mining when it became too much work for them but the Chinese took over the claims (though they couldn't own them) and continued working them. Anyhow, we were looking for one of the tiered gardens they had made over a 100 years ago and went up this mountain and then started back down but couldn't find them. We only traveled about 20 miles round trip in the search but it was very slow going due to the condition of the road. It was very, very narrow, right on the edge of the mountain. One little miscue and you fell down over a 1,000 feet. We finally had enough and came back to the campground but it still was a great trip with lots of good scenery.

Tomorrow we head for Lewiston, ID and Hell's Gate State Park for three nights.

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