Wednesday, July 29, 2015

TD 2015 - Idaho

No sign announced the entry into Idaho, at some point I looked at the GPS and it was already done.  A forest road turned a bit wider and dustier and I finally got to a place where I could look back at a view of the Grand Tetons to the east and the Snake River Valley to the west.  I kept going and got to the Squirrel Creek Lodge and spent the night there.

Leaving the Tetons Behind

The next morning was the 4th of July.  Had some breakfast and then rode through farmland and to the beginning of the Rail Trail.
Squirrel Creek Lodge

Mustard ??
 The rail trail is about 30 some miles of old railroad bed that now is used as a hiking, cycling and ATV trail.  Most of the traffic I saw on the trail on this 4th of July was ATV traffic.  The beginning of the trail was beautiful, starting at a great fishing area with lots of anglers in the water.  As the ride progressed the trail climbed above the river and you could hear the rapids down in the distance below.

Beginning of Rail Trail

Looking down at the Warm River

Old Rail Tunnel
I thought I was going to get to go through the old tunnel, but it was closed off and there was a path around it.  Probably a very good idea, on closer inspection the tunnel didn't look safe at all !  Then the rail trail got flat and sandy but I was still making progress.  Once I got closer to the Island Park/Macks Inn area, the number of ATV's rose dramatically.  There were dozens of them, and groups of three and four at a time, one right behind the other, eating all of the dust of the guy in front.  They were pretty polite, but all of the dust was starting to give me a fit.  And as the trail got closer to Big Springs, that soft volcanic soil that had been mentioned really became a problem.  I think I walked a good portion of the last mile, just so much deep loose sand and ATV dust that it was one of the more frustrating pieces of the whole TD ride.

But, it did pass, I got to some pavement and crossed highway 20.  Found a nice restaurant called Connie's, had an excellent prime rib sandwich and then started on the way to Montana.  I got as far as the Red Rock RV park, where I got a campsite on nice grass with a shower for $15.  The next morning, it was a short ride up Red Rock Pass.  I took a picture of the sign for the pass.  Then I rode for a few miles wondering where the Montana border was .... before I remembered that I took a picture of it !  Old timers setting in.

Red Rock Pass

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