You may not know this: Idaho is a state you cannot drive from its northern area directly south through the state to its southern border. Really. No road goes through the central area of the state. Central Idaho has 4 different national forest areas with 2 American Indian reservations bordering them. This was always fascinating to me to know and especially since it necessitates driving through Montana to meet my Idaho friends. I met my friends at a restaurant in Island Park: The Last Chance Bar and Grill at Trouthunter. Good food and plenty of fishermen in the area along with tourists stopping in for a meal. I’d recommend the place and the bison burger on the menu!
I am very fortunate to have good friends in Idaho to visit. They own beautiful property in a rural area outside of Ashton. Seeing a beautiful sunset after a day with sunny weather was wonderful. I had been experiencing rain prior to my visit here. At night, the dark sky has sparkling stars and the nearby waterfall flow lulls me to sleep. In the morning, we sometimes saw a bald eagle or two and a number of common mergansers.
A Yellowstone National Park hike…
One day we took a long ride down a gravel road eventually into Yellowstone National Park. There we hiked a 1.3 mile path out and back along a couple of rivers to view Cave Falls and Bechler Falls. We walked among lodgepole pines, saw plenty of mushrooms and the last of some wildflowers. It was a nice hike and saw only 5 other people on the trail. It is definitely an area of the Yellowstone National Park few people visit, so I felt it was very special. We were fortunate to not see any grizzly or black bears. We did carry bear spray with us besides talking often enough to scare probably all wildlife away. And that was okay; we were safe.
I enjoyed my time with my friends relaxing and observing a number of birds right on their property. As a matter of fact, I got a good view of a sharp-tailed grouse after 2 unsuccessful views. That makes #436 in my eBird life list! That bird was not even on my radar, so extra special!
My friend’s home is a short drive from Yellowstone National Park and Teton National Park. Here are some photos from this area:
The next time I am in this area, or passing through, I should add Craters of the Moon National Monument to my itinerary. It would also be fun to stop by Pocatello where years ago a group of us met to start our 100 mile Middle Fork of the Salmon River rafting trip! That trip brings back memories … so good to have such memories… and now I created more with my friends on this trip. I am so appreciative of their hospitality and time to relax in a beautiful area of the world! USA has many wonderful places to visit. Don’t forget to step beyond your backyard and see what is out there! You may be pleasantly surprised!