Wednesday (7/28) we lifted our jacks and rolled away from Caldwell Idaho (Canyon Springs RV Resort) at about 8:30. By the time we stopped at a fuel station we hit I-84 at 9am and were on our way to American Falls Idaho 240 miles down the road.
We don’t normally like rolling on the freeway but in some parts of the country it just makes sense and as far as we are concerned southern Idaho is one of those areas. There just isn’t a whole lot between point A and B and the scenery isn’t a bunch better on secondary roads than it is on the freeway from what we have seen. But I’m sure someone could prove us wrong.
After jumping on the freeway I set the cruise control at 68mph and had a pretty uneventful travel day, boring but uneventful until we rolled into our new home for the next 5 days at Willow Bay RV Park.
About the only thing eventful was seeing a motorcycle, well trike, pass us pulling the biggest camper I have ever seen a bike pull LOL!! We were running close to 70 and he scooted right by us so I couldn’t help wonder how far down the road that trailer would push him if he had to stop fast.
Willow Bay is a pretty small campground with very little to offer but it has very large sites and most have a water view (which could be blocked if it got busy) which worked just fine for us, we only booked 5 nights and had a few places of interest to see while here so we didn’t plan to spend much time at the RV park anyway.
The small town of American Fall (Where the sun shines in every window) (Population 4500) is nestled along the edge of the Snake River and the American Falls Reservoir.
American Falls was a landmark waterfall on the Snake River named after a party of American trappers whose boat went over the falls. And the Wilson Price Hunt expedition in 1811 camped at the falls one night and the expedition of John C. Frémont was here in 1843. And the Oregon Trail passed north of town through the present-day reservoir.
The first Power plant sprang up at the falls in 1901 and American Falls was the first town in the U.S. to be entirely relocated, well at least most of it, I read that there is some remains still at the bottom of the reservoir. But can you imagine the task back then of moving 46 businesses, three hotels, one school, five churches, one hospital, six grain elevators, and one flour mill!!??
We took a short driving tour of town once we were all set up in our site but it didn’t take very long LOL!! We like small towns but this one might be a little small unless you want to take advantage of the river or you just want a quiet place to chill.
Thursday (7/29) we tried to get an early start so we could get a couple hikes in before the heat of the day so about 9am we jumped in the truck (hmm, it seemed odd to not type Jeep there LOL!!) and headed towards Massacre Rock State Park. Our first stop was the visitor center.
During the Oregon Trail period beginning in 1841, “Gate of Death” and “Devil’s Gate” were names given to this area which referred to a narrow gap in a rock formation that was wide enough for only one wagon to pass through at a time. A freeway now flows through that expanded gap.
After the visitor center we hiked 3 different short trails (combined probably 5 miles) that provided some great views of the Snake River.
After our hikes we drove down the road 2 miles to Register Rock. It’s a spot where Oregon Trail emigrants would stop for an evening of rest before continuing on their journeys and while there would carve their names in the large boulder. Sort of early day vandals I guess LOL!!
While at Register Rock we broke out a small lunch we packed, sat under a nice big shade tree, enjoyed a nice afternoon breeze and had a bite to eat before making our way home.
We were plenty spent from the heat by the time we got home so we showered and hid inside until it was time for an evening walk and some play time in the park LOL!!
Saturday (7/30) we had plans to drive into Pocatello to hit a Farmers Market and a brewery I found on my nifty handy dandy local brewery app AND to meet up with our friends Jeff & Tina.
We wondered around the small Farmers Market for a while and walked the downtown streets of Old Town Pocatello before Tina & Jeff showed up and once they did we mainly chatted and payed very little to the market from then on.
After some time we all decided to head to the Portneuf Valley Brewery for lunch and an adult beverage. The place was completely empty when we walked in but it was hopping by the time we left. We had a great time catching up and shame on me for once again getting no pictures!!
Once finished at the brewery and some more chatting outside we said our “see ya down the road’s) and went our separate ways, knowing that if all goes as planned we will see each other in Arizona this winter probably in January.
Then Diane and I spent some time touring and familiarizing ourselves with Pocatello and the surrounding area the best we could in one afternoon anyway. The population of Pocatello is about 55,000 and then another 12,000 people live in the adjoining Chubbuck so size wise it’s not bad and it was pretty easy navigating which makes it even better.
Once we tired of driving around we made our way home, had dinner and chilled in our chairs outside until we retired in front of the TV for the evening.
Sunday was a down day, other than a nice 4 mile walk after breakfast we hung around camp and just putzed around. Diane called her mom to wish her a Big Happy 91st Birthday, I did a little cleaning of our fresh water accessory tote and our black tank accessory tote and we lazed around under the shade tree until the heat chased us inside. In fact the only time we left home was to go fill the pickup with gas in preparation for our travel day on Monday. I always like to have our toad full of fuel in case we run into any issues on the road and it needs to be used.
Yup, after 5 days in American Falls Monday (8/1) will bring another travel day. And another day of travel on freeways, yuck. Our plan is to travel 240 miles south/southeast to our next destination.
Diane had a good point, we should have traveled to our next destination on Sunday because we will be driving through Salt Lake City and everyone would have been in church!!! Damn!!!