Friday, October 4, 2013

GRAND CANYON VOLUNTEER - 28 September, Week 17 - IDAHO Road Trip

We took a well deserved break from our duties at the Grand Canyon to go and visit our daughter, Klara, in Ashton, Idaho. Ashton is located about 60 miles South of West Yellowstone, and 60 miles East of Jackson, WY.

We opted to take a scenic route up there which took a day and a half of driving. The first day was a pleasant drive along U.S. Rte. 89 through Panguitch, UT and then cutting over to I15 and  proceeding to Lehi, UT where we did some shopping at one of the large Cabela’s Outdoor gear stores. The next morning we were up early to get through Salt Lake City before the morning commute hour and then reconnect with U.S. Rte. 89 in Brigham City. The drive North from there to Jackson, WY is very scenic and most enjoyable with the beginning of Fall color. It was chilly though, and as we approached Jackson we could see some snow on the Teton Peaks. As we crossed the Pass there was freezing rain, and quite cold.

Thursday and Friday nights were spent in a Yurt in Harriman State Park, Idaho. The park was the summer ranch of the Harriman family of New York, railroad magnets of the late 1800’s and 1900’s. A yurt is a circular tent designed originally in Mongolia. It came equipped with a wood burning stove, a camp stove, a lantern, table and benches, as well as beds for about six people. We stayed nice and warm as George loves to chop wood, and did a great job of keeping the fire going through the night.

We have spent several days in the winter, x-country skiing and snow shoeing in this park. It is a beautiful area located South of West Yellowstone and North of Ashton. We enjoyed several great hikes here. The first afternoon we hiked to the Ranch from the yurt, and the second day we went on about a 7 mile hike around Silver Lake. Along the way we saw elk, moose, and grizzly bear track. We also saw a few trumpeter swan that are year round residents, Canadian geese, white pelicans, etc. We also met a couple of groups of horsemen on the trail. Yurt camping is quite a luxury as the campsite is already established, warm, and protected from the elements. (The bathroom is still an outhouse about 25 yards away. J) After leaving Harriman we visited Upper Mesa Falls which is located on the Henry’s Fork of the Snake River. It is a beautiful falls which had a lovely rainbow in the spray. Two days later we hiked from Bear Gulch up stream to Lower Mesa Falls, another 7 mile hike round trip. Beautiful country, and the weather was most cooperative. Another day we went for a walk along the River Road North of Ashton, and saw a red fox along the way.

We really enjoyed our time in Ashton and visiting with Klara. We also enjoyed visiting with her friends, Pete, Bobbie, and Beth; as well as visiting with locals at the Coffee Shop in town. We opted for a long day on the road enroute home to make it all the way to Kanab. This allowed us the opportunity to get haircuts, and do our last shopping of the season in Kanab. We have three weeks left at the Rim.

Here are some photos…. 


Along U.S. Rte 89

Teton Valley Looking North

View from Teton Pass back Toward Teton Valley

Heading into Weather

Storm Clouds over Driggs, ID


Trumpeter Swan and Canadian Geese

Canadian Geese Escort

View from Harriman S. P.

Trumpeter Swan Family in Morning Fog

Morning, Silver Lake

George and Klara outside Yurt

Keeping the Home Fires Burning

Grizzly Bear Track

Grizzly Bear Track

Moose Track

Spruce Grouse

Been There, Done That

Silver Lake (We hiked around it) And Tetons to the South

 UPPER MESA FALLS (on Henry's Fork of Snake River)


Canyon View

Lower Mesa Falls

False Solomon Seal Gone to Seed

False Solomon Seal Fruit

Henry's Fork through Bear Gulch  

Moosing around

Red Fox along River Road


  1. Looks like you timed it perfect for colors.

  2. Thanks Gaelyn. We were a bit early but what we saw was beautiful.