Idaho, a quick trip

We have good friends that moved to Burley, Idaho a few years ago.  Life seemed to keep getting in the way and delayed our visit. Finally, the timing was right.  Southwest Airlines had some great fares and we decided to go visit them last week.  So glad that the weather cooperated too. It was clear and crisp and perfect for flying from Oakland, CA to Boise, ID then renting a car for our visit.  It has been at least 20 years since we have been to Idaho.  I’d forgot about the driving distances.  Luckily with good friends, good roads and good weather we enjoyed the trip.

Southern Idaho is high desert.  Lots of open space, beautiful skies and large gorges created by the Snake River. We spent a few nights with our friends.

Steve and Karen in front of their remodeled house in Burley, ID

A big thank you to Karen and Steve for having us.  Thank you for your hosting us and for a great visit.

Then two nights in Twin Falls at the Fairfield Inn and Suites.  A nice location, quiet and good service.

We had a nice dinner in Rupert, ID at Henry’s at the Drift Inn.  While in Twin Falls, ID we went to Elevation 486 for dinner and highly recommend it.  Go early, and you can have beautiful views of the Perrine Bridge and gorge.

Here are photos of the highlights:

Beautiful evening sky, Burley, ID
Bright morning sky, Burley, ID

Hansen Memorial Bridge, pioneer builders.

Hanson Memorial Bridge
Snake River gorge under Hanson Bridge

Shoshone Falls, near Twin Falls, ID.  We were happily surprised at the amount of water at the falls.  We had been warned that sometimes after June, the water slows dramatically.  But the heavy rains last winter really have helped with the water flows.

Bob and Vicki


Perrine Bridge, the gateway into Twin Falls from the major highways.  The bridge is almost 486 feet above the canyon and spans 993 feet across the gorge.

Perrine Bridge

Base jumpers jump from this bridge regularly.  It is quite interesting to watch.

They jump from the top
They hope to land in this clearing

Driving Highway 84 towards Boise, we stopped at Malad Gorge State Park.  Here, right next to the highway is a state park and large gorge that cannot be seen from the highway but is right next to it.

Follow this trail to the gorge
The landscape hides the gorge
One side of the bridge over the gorge
The other side over the gorge

Driving up Highway 75 via Highway 93 from Twin Falls we made our way to Sun Valley.  Being skiers and so close, we had to see it!  The route crosses more high desert, small river gorges and large sections of volcanic rock.

Volcanic rock drifts in the landscape
Highway 75 with the snow capped Sawtooth Mountains in the background

We went first to Ketchum as Bob’s great-grandparents had had a cabin there along Trail Creek which he was hoping to find.  Unfortunately, he was last at the two story log cabin in the 1960’s and didn’t have an address.  We covered all the roads near the creek but everything appears to be much newer than a cabin that he had been told was built before 1900.  But we saw some beautiful homes and enjoyed seeing how much Ketchum had grown.

Sun Valley Lodge and area was built in 1936.  The lodge is beautiful and the inside is even more exquisite.

We drove back to Twin Falls for a dip in the pool and hot tub, went to a great dinner and got ready to head back to Boise for our flight Monday evening.

On the way we stopped at Three Island Crossing State Park near Glenn’s Ferry exit.  This park has many amenities for today and shares an important history of settling the west.

Idaho historic marker for the Ferry Crossing and state park
Statue to honor all the pioneers
Wagon display with history descriptions near the Interpretive Center
Conestoga Wagon, restored. This is in front of the interpretive center which was closed for winter.

Glenn’s Ferry was built upriver  from the Three Crossing site.  The Snake River surrounding areas vary widely across Idaho.  Here and near Burley there are many easy access points and other areas just the deep, steep gorges.

Replica of Glenn’s Ferry, set near the river where it would be dragged into the river.  Across the river, the Oregon Trail is worn into the mountain side and clearly seen.
A better view of the trail across the river
One of the ends of the Ferry anchor, another can be seen across the river.
Beautiful Snake River area

We made our way into Boise and went to the UP Train Depot.  It was restored about 20 years ago.  It is no longer used as a train station but is set up as a museum and event center.  We were happy to find it open on Mondays for visitors.  Even if it wasn’t a Southern Pacific Depot, Bob knew I would want to stop!

Boise Depot, UP Railroad
Inside the beautifully restored depot. Many small RR displays with full descriptions.

Outside the have a steam engine, displays and lovely gardens.

Engine 2295
Information Display
History of trains on the route

We drove around the Idaho State Capitol Building and the old part of town.  Then we went to the Bittercreek Alehouse for a hearty lunch before our early evening flight back to Oakland.  Great restaurant, excellent service and interesting building in old town Boise.

Overall, a great quick trip.  Love being able to pick up good fares on Southwest Airlines and escape to someplace completely different!

Until the next time – be adventurous and enjoy this short life! Vicki and Bob

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