Posts Tagged 'Idaho'
In the spring of 2022, I drove from Portland, Oregon to Miami, Florida in a total of four days. It was some of the fastest cross-country driving I had ever done, but still a good dive into so many of the American states I had never seen before. Arriving in Portland a couple days prior to my drive, I had extra time to spend in the city. I was able to catch a glimpse of the city’s inviting clubs, parks, and restaurants with my family, including Mount Tabor park, a brilliant hilly park around a reservoir, and the waterfront park and the Willamette river. Overall I had a restful time in the city after a somewhat exhausting flight. With the influx of people arriving in Portland, this place has become an important terminal in the restaurant world. There is all variety of fusion of ubiquitous foods into new forms, and plenty of local produce, brewing, and fishing. A lot of IPAs are sold around here, but there are also stouts and other dark beers. On my last day in Portland, we stopped by Luc Lac, a counter-based Vietnamese restaurant, where we got some excellent banh mi sandwiches for the road.
We drove up the Columbia river valley for hours and for hundreds of miles, first leaving the pastures of the Willamette valley with its many farms, flowers, and woods before entering sharper cliffs and valleys, ascending up steep hills.
After some time, we began to enter the inner, arid regions of Oregon, still driving along the Columbia river but reaching heights where they had wind turbines built for renewable power. At this point, there was little vegetation in terms of trees, but we had passed some swamps and reservoirs that supported the river’s water supply. We entered the state of Idaho some time in the early evening. Gas prices were markedly good, and we were on the rim the majestic High Desert area, a dry, undeveloped stretch of land along the southwestern rim of Idaho. Eventually arriving in Twin Falls, Idaho, I saw the Snake River, the largest tributary of the Columbia. It was in a massive gorge going right down from the town, with a beautiful park area below the bridge.
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Prime Minister Trudeau still refused to open the Canadian border to travelers, so my hopes of driving from Washington State though British Columbia, Alberta,Saskatchewan , Manitoba and Western Ontario, before crossing back into the States at Sault Ste. Marie were shelved for a future date. The border finally opened in August. I was trying not to retrace last year’s voyage and crossed in only two spots – Billings MT and Sheridan WY.
From Portland I drove East to the Snake River.
The Snake River runs from the Continental Divide in Wyoming to the Columbia River. Salmon swim all the way from the Pacific Ocean to Wyoming – against a strong current and many dam ladders along the way. Ate lunch in an old Quonset Hut turned restaurant in Joseph,Oregon. The river is the border between Oregon and Idaho in these parts.
See the video in the opening Cross Country 2021 story.
After the Snake River I spent the night int he capital city of Boise. Hotels were surprisingly expensive and I ended up in a Holiday Inn Express for about $ 190. But the next night, in Stanley , I stayed with old family friends at their RJR Ranch . We cooked steaks over an open fire, while watching the sun set over the Sawtooth Mountains. RJR is a working ranch with horses and cattle. One can also fish salmon from streams that run through the the property.
Missoula Friday Night
Missoula is a rocking college town and just coming back after Covid. I socialized amongst the maskless crowds and it was fun to be out again. Last years journey was quite solitary – often eating in my hotel room, or off the hood of the car.
Montana is a wide state, spanning an entire time zone. From Missoula, I stopped in Butte for lunch , swam in the Yellowstone River and made it to Billings for the night My hotel there cost 3 times what it did last year. Not only is tourism up, but firefighters from all over the country were there to fight fires all over the West.
The next day TotalAdventure left the Rockies for the High Plains, through Sheridan,Wyoming ( and a huge steak lunch) In late day drove through Sturgis, South Dakota – where the Biker rally was about to start.
Spent the night in Pine Bluff, home of the world’s only casono that doesn’t serve drinks. Alcohol is a serious problem on the reservation and possession is outlawed.
By late morning crossed into Nebraska and spent two nights in Omaha to get caught up on work.
From Omaha it was about 7 hours to Chicago, including lunch in Des Moines. It was hard to stay awake in the repetitive scenery of rolling hill cornfields.
It was great to be back in Chicago after a couple of years. My last time there was in February,2018 when it was 7 below zero !
As a New Yorker, Chicago seems to be the only other “Real City” in the USA. Washington, Boston and SanFrancisco are runner ups.
From Chicago , and a brief stop in Indiana to visit an old friend, I returned Massillon Ohio to finish research from last year. Massillon is ancestral hometown of TotalAdventure.
My Grandfather , Blaine Zuver founded Enterprise Aluminum Company. Manufactured coffee makers, pots ,pans and in wartime – mess kits ,canteens and bullet casings on fighter planes.
A Beautiful Cleveland Day On The Lake Erie Waterfront.
TotalAdventure then spent a week in his childhood home town – Bay Head NJ.
From Bay Head , it’s a 19 hour trip back down I 95 to MiamiSpent the night in Lumberton NC. The highlight of the trip, which I have done hundreds of times, is BBQ at Malson’s in Kingsland GA, just 3 miles from the Florida line. And then – it was home to Miami ! The last 2 summers have been perfect to get to know our country from East to West and North to South. Now, we return to the World at Large !