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Idaho 2017, Part 1

With the end of fire season and cool weather in the forecast it was time to hit the road for a week off.  Off to the high country of Idaho.  Your vision of Idaho may be from I-84 passing through the southern part of the state.  If so you may equate Idaho with a weedy wasteland of dairy cows and junk cars.  And that is what is it.  Trust me.  Disregard the rest of this post and stay home.

We were Stanley bound, but we decided to take a day getting there and made our way up into the Payette River country and stayed overnight on the way.  The river, mountains and forests were beautiful and call for a visit of their own.

South Fork Payette River


Payette Colors

We enjoyed an evening around the fire and were up the next day for the short drive the rest of the way to Stanley Lake.

The inlet campground at Stanley Lake is about how I left it last time I was there, which seems like quite a few years back.  There’s a few less trees, and a few more dead ones, and the infrastructure is wearing out without much maintenance, but the mountains and lake don’t change.  Beautiful as ever.

Mt. McGown from Stanley Lake


Stanley Lake


There are lots of memories at this lake.  It is always good to be back.


A view you never tire of

We found that the fish still bit on the same old formula.  How many would you like?


Stanley Lake Inlet


Fall in the Sawtooths


We took a tour of some of the other lakes in the Sawtooth foothills including Alturas, Pettit, Little Redfish and Redfish.  It was pretty quiet compared to the crowds of summer.  We also enjoyed sunny days, although the nights were on the cold side with one low around 15 and the rest in the 20’s.  It has been colder.


Alturas Lake


Pettit Lake



Sawtooth Mountains



Little Redfish Lake


‘Closed’ was the theme of the trip.  I guess it helped cut the crowds down a bit.  More squirrels than people, I like those demographics.


Eating up before snow comes


Who’s there?


Redfish Lake Lodge (Closed)


Docks at Redfish Lake (Closed)


The previous night we enjoyed the milky way over the mountains and then right before bed an amazing moonrise over the lake.  Tonight it was my chance to try to capture them.


Milky Way over Mt. McGown


Moonrise, Stanley Lake


The next day we ventured down to the Yankee Fork to view some of the historic gold mining activities.  The Yankee Fork Dredge is quite an impressive feat of engineering and destruction for relatively little profit.

Yankee Fork Dredge


We enjoyed one more night at the lake with a dutch oven dinner and yet another stellar sunset.


Stanley Lake


Inlet Camp


It always brings a bit of a tear when leaving a place you love when you don’t know when you will be back.


Sunrise from Stanley Lake


We headed south towards the second half of our trip with view of the Sawtooths leaving us at Galena Pass.




4 thoughts on “Idaho 2017, Part 1

  1. Thanks for the amazing photos.What a beautiful area of Idaho.
    We drove through some of that area many years ago and found little crowds.
    Thanks for the ride along.

    1. Thanks for the read Frank. Being in the midst of big crowds in central Oregon it sure is nice to get to a place where it is quiet.

  2. Fond memories, I spent a few years guiding on the Middle Fork out of Stanley when returning from Vietnam, and got back there just two years ago. One of the prettiest places on Earth. Thank you for sharing! Beautiful photos and all the perfect spots to stop.

  3. Denis, you are sure welcome. It sure is easy to find a nice spot for a photo in this country!

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