Monday, May 5, 2014

Scenic Byways Leading Me Home

The gypsy in me loves to travel a path I have never seen before. 

To appease myself on the way home I choose the most scenic route along the way. When ever I am traveling I can feel the excitement build as I see a sign announcing a scenic byway.  Almost before I know it, we again were turning onto an uncharted road.

I was able to travel two Scenic byways I had never been on before, on our journey home.  


Today is the Payette Scenic Byway. 

 Heading north out of Boise, Idaho on Highway 55 is Payette Scenic Byway, an outdoor wonderland for summer or winter fun.  The road winds along the Payette River which is carved into a canyon along scrub brush and basalt rock.

 The ever present river is front and center along the highway.

      Thunder Mountain Railroad Line 

The Thunder Mountain Line offers rides along the river canyon from March to December, featuring beautiful, winding canyon views of the river gorge.  It is  one of the best ways to SEE the canyon as your eyes are free to take the views all in rather than keeping your eyes on the road. 

 It was so difficult to keep my eyes on the road, as I didn't want to miss a single view along the way.  

I reluctantly gave up the camera to Hailey as there were two many views to stop at and I wanted a record of every bend in the river.  


 Lucky for you I won't be posting them all.  But I love rivers and the beauty and power of rivers is captivating this time of year. 

A 1700 ft drop along the canyon makes this river a popular destination for river rafting and kayaking with up to  Class 5 river rafting experience.  Spring runoff makes this a dangerous expedition except for the most experienced.

The bubbling, churning cauldron sported only a lone kayak while we  were there.

Before long I found that we had climbed to snow country.

Once we pull out of the river canyon we are once again in the wild, west.

Abandoned homesteads and barns dot the landscape.  Oh how I would love the luxury of time to wander the back roads to see all remnants of ranching and farming history. 

The town of MaCall, Idaho begs me to stop and wander it's streets but we must press on as vacation days are coming to a close.  With a lake on it's towns shores it is a popular destination in any season... I'm sure that many answer the call to return.  We certainly will return.

Next town is Riggins, Idaho, which is the gateway to the Snake River and Hells Canyon.  When we drove through the jet boats on the river were racing on the river... the narrow town was lined with viewers along the river banks.... Certainly no where to park for all of our length to stop for a view....(alas, no pictures either) I am happy to report that I collided with no spectators and managed to keep us on the road as we traveled through town.  It is a wonder to think of all the festivals and special events that each community along the way has. 

I must get better at research.

I was looking forward to our night destination of White Bird, Idaho.  And  I wasn't disappointed!!

Wait till you see our camp!!



  1. I love traveling new scenic roads I have never travelled before. Always a new adventure.

  2. What a gorgeous river. That train ride looks like an excellent adventure. If you have to be on your way back, this is surely a beautiful way to do it.

  3. I loved your photos - what a beautiful road! The guy kayaking was scary, and I hope he wasn't alone. I've been in rough waters and for me it's no fun...

  4. Wow, what a trip! I was in your area at White Bird until Sunday with Sisters, it was gorgeous and we all had a blast. Sorry we missed you.

  5. What a great route you have been on. The river looks great but you sure wouldn't get me on it. Loved the old barn.

    Can't wait to see your camp.