Beauty in the Mountains
After visiting family and friends in Southwest Idaho, we spent our week traveling the mountain highways of Idaho and Northeast Oregon. Pete loves the mountain roads and Ellen tolerates them. The constant twisting and turning can be tiresome. The trick is to drive slow and drive short daily distances. So we cut down our driving maximum of 200 miles every other day to 304 miles for the entire week!
The first leg of our week started from the Monroe Creek RV Park in Weiser, Idaho.
We meandered 68 miles through the peaceful mountain Hwy 71.
Hwy 71 meets the Snake River at the Brownlee Reservoir and follows the Snake to Copperfield Campground.
The Brownlee Dam was built and operated by the Idaho Power Company.
The Snake River between the dam and Copperfield Campground.
Copperfield Camp has 62 RV sites and 10 tent sites. The camp was also created and operated by the Idaho Power Company. Our site was one of six very nice level gravel sites (No 8,10,12,14,16,18). ALL the other sites are surrounded by very nice grass.
This grass playground is as big as two football fields.
The Oxbow Dam is also an Idaho Power Company hydroelectric dam, viewed here from the campground. We heard of this camp from our close friend Don. It is the nicest campground we have ever stayed at. Thanks Don!
After two days at Copperfield we traveled the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway (Forest Service Road 39). It starts by paralleling the Pine Creek.
Not sure if FS 39 was a road fit for the MotherShip, Pete called the district forest office. "Can we drive our 40 foot motorhome on this road?" The ranger answered "Can you or should you are two different questions."
She said the road is paved, with no shoulders and no center line. We know that means that the road will be narrow as they don't paint center lines on a road that does not have two normal sized lanes. We decided to take the road. As you can see, it does have a center line and two lanes. As it turns out, it is a great and beautiful drive; you just have to take it slow.
This days trip was also just 68 miles.
The Hells Canyon Overlook is worth the 3 mile side trip.
This side road is narrow, no shoulders or center line. On this road, and the main FS 39, we encountered less than a dozen vehicles and we did not hold up any of them.
Mandy helped to navigate us back to the FS 39 from the overlook.
Our first view of the Wallowa Mountains as we approached Joseph, Oregon.
We stayed two days at 5 Peaks RV Park
in Joseph. 5 Peaks is a boutique RV park with just 11 sites. Marcy and Marty, the owners, are good friends that we met in 2011. That year we took over the web design and hosting for their park. We had a wonderful reunion. Joseph is a long distance from anywhere. But, if you get anywhere close, be sure to visit the park and Joseph. Joseph is the cutest little town with brick paver walkways and darling shops and restaurants. And just a couple miles to Wallowa Lake.
More mountain roads leaving Joseph. Rather than the larger Hwy 82/84, we took the back roads: 204 / 11 / 334 / 37 and 730 to Umatilla, Oregon. This was a HUGE day of 143 miles, whew, that was tough.
Another nice campground: Marina RV Park, a city park in Umatilla, Oregon.
Again enormous grass areas which were totally approved by Mandy.
The Northwest is just so loverly during the summer. Grass, trees, rivers, lakes and mountains galore. God really created an amazing world. Until next week. . .
With love, Pete, Ellen and Mandy
Photos from June 2019