"Two roads diverged in a yellow wood... And sorry I could not travel both. I took the one less traveled by. And that has made all the difference." --Robert Frost

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Warming Up in Challis, ID

Challis, Idaho
Round Valley RV Park

Goodbye colder weather, hello warm(er) weather.  For a little bit anyway.  I wasn't aware how beautiful the drive up Hwy 93 is.  The river runs alongside the entire way from Stanley up to Challis.
The mountain sides change from smooth looking to very jagged.  Barren to tree covered, plain to very colorful.  Flat farmland to incredibly steep.

There is a hole in the wall in this part of the Salmon River.

Amazing how steep it gets.  You'd think they'd have lots of problems with landslides.

Moving out of the mountains in Stanely down into the high desert plains in Challis was a welcome shift.  We've been boondocking/dry camping so much it will be nice to have FHUs.  You know, on-site laundry, running the fireplace, unlimited showers, free heat at night.  Ah, the luxuries.  Round Valley RV Park happened to be a Passport America Park so we took advantage of rejoining and staying our allowed four nights for $18.  Even with the renewal fee of $35 we saved a bit and had FHUs.  We had read the park was rundown a few years ago but new owners are trying hard to make it nicer.  Spotless, inexpensive laundry, long large level sites and many newly planted trees and flowers will really make this a nice park right in town in a few years.  The new owners are very nice and accommodating too.
Once settled, we drove through the small town to see what we could find.  Right across the street was a tiny brewery called The River of No Return.  We stopped in for a quick sample and some food.  The beer was just ok but the food was local, grass fed beef and homemade sides.  Very good.

Down the street we stopped in at the Land of the Yankee Fork State Park to visit their museum and get some info on a later planned outing.  There was a small outdoor display of mining equipment.

Since it gets so much snow up here in the winter, they had sleighs to shuffle miners and families.

Old hay baler.
High powered water driller.

Inside we watched a short movie of the area and walked through the museum.  I found a few rock samples I had not seen before.  Pretty colors.
I have seen smokey quartz, but not like this.  Really cool.
A very old wooden wheelbarrow.

My friend, Rita, would've LOVED to have a pair of shoes like these!  You can't tell by the picture, but women back then were tiny.  Only tiny feet would fit in these shoes.

I thought this was pretty funny. (above)
When we came out there was yet, another wildfire that started over the ridge.  We were a little concerned as we would be taking a driving loop through the mountains to see the ghost towns in that area tomorrow and were looking forward to the sunny weather.

Another small town with free water/dump/fill centers.  Idaho really makes things convenient.
Tomorrow we head out to drive the Custer Motorway.
We drove down to the river to find a geocache and let Hurley play in the water.
The smoke is really spreading into the valley. Should be a fantastic sunset
Hurley doing what he does best.
Anyone but Jim & Barb know what these are?  They are called Hellgrammites.  Great fishing bait.  These are actually the shells they shed before becoming large "flies".
Just as we thought.  The smoke from todays fire made for the most incredible sunset we've seen.  I took pictures about 15 minutes apart.  These aren't enhanced.  The yellows and reds looks like fire but it's all just smoke.

We ended the day with a delicious pot roast that Steve cooked in the crockpot while we were out.


  1. I bet it smelled fantastic when you first opened the door! I'm hungry... My dinner is cooking though so all is well :-) Too bad about the fire but it sure made for a few terrific photos.

    1. It sure did smell great! Hate to see fires, but yes, it sure made for a fantastic site.

  2. Sorry we missed seeing you guys! Gorgeous sunset pics!

  3. River of no return.... what a great name! The "fireset" photos are breathtaking. We plan to blaze some paths in Idaho next year. Thanks once again for leaving such delicious bread crumbs.

    1. The smoke made for the most amazing sight, for sure. The next day, not so much! We're keeping track of some of your crumbs too ;-)


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