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.