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Posts Tagged ‘Idaho’

Some folks say big ol’ Lake Pend Oreille is Idaho’s most magnificent lake. But let’s just stick to the facts: It’s the state’s largest (43 miles long, 111 miles of shoreline). It’s the deepest (at 1,158 feet deep, there are only four deeper lakes in the nation). It’s got terrific scenery, splendid clean water, big fish, a fascinating history …” – sandpointonline.com

A Canada goose taking of from Lake Pend Orielle.  I took the photo during a Ladies Night Out boating cruise for Farragut State Park’s volunteers. — Photo by Pat Bean

It’s pronounced Pon-de-ray

I was listening to Clive Cussler’s Poseidon’s Arrow in my car while driving from Tucson  to my daughter’s home in Marana. It’s just 13 miles away, but traffic and construction detours turn it into a 40-minute drive, making the familiar route an excellent time for book listening.

An aerial view of Lake Pend Orielle. — Wikipedia Photo

I think of Cussler’s Dirk Pitt books as fantasy swashbuckler reading, not to be taken seriously, simply a time to enjoy the good guys wearing white hats and the villains all wearing black hats, which isn’t ever the case in the real world.

Anyway, after a boat/vehicle chase that led through a crowded Mexican town, the book has its protagonists landing at the Coeur d’Alene Airport in Idaho, then driving through Farragut State Park to Bayview, a small town that sits beside Lake Pend Oreille, which is pronounced Ponderay. The lake is home to a Naval submarine base, and the book’s characters talk of the place as being interesting trivia for back home in Washington D.C.

Now if you’re thinking that the idea of an inland submarine base in Idaho is all in Cussler’s imagination, you would be wrong. I was a campground volunteer at Farragut State Park one summer, have been boating on Lake Pend Oreille, and learned all about the Farragut Naval Training Station that was in operation during World War II, a part of which is still active for underwater submarine research.

One of the beauties of being a widely traveled old broad is reading books that include descriptions about places I have visited. It seems to happen regularly these days. I find such déjà vu moments, which refresh the brain, a bonus for having lived so long.

    Bean Pat: Have you ever seen an Inca tern? https://cindyknoke.com/2017/12/20/inca-tern/ Then take a look at them here. They are awesome, and so are this blogger’s photographs of them.

Pat Bean is a Lonely Planet Community Pathfinder. Her book, Travels with Maggie, is now up on Amazon at http://tinyurl.com/y8z7553y  You can contact her at patbean@msn.com

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For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return.” – Leonardo da Vinci

            “Don’t live the same life 75 ties and call it a life.” – Robin Sharma

The Smiley Creek airport with the scenic Sawtooth Mountains in the background.

The Smiley Creek airport with the scenic Sawtooth Mountains in the background.

Stephen Coonts Inspired Memories

            I’m addicted to travel books, and nothing pleases me more than finding one I haven’t read. So it was with quite a bit of delight that I came across suspense and thriller author Stephen Coonts’ book, “The Cannibal Queen.” I found it in the used book section of the Golden Goose Thrift Store in Catalina, Arizona, just 20 miles up the road on Highway 77 from my apartment. I felt as if I had found a golden egg.

The book’s subtitle “An Aerial Odyssey Across America” is the topic of Coonts’ book, which follows his plane travels with a teenage son in the summer of 1991. The Cannibal Queen is a rejuvenated 1942 Stearman open cockpit biplane. Coont’s tales of flying it reminded me off how much I love flying in small planes.

The Smiley Creek Lodge on a snowy winter day.

The Smiley Creek Lodge on a snowy winter day.

The first time was in a four sitter that took off on a sunny day from Logan, Utah, which took me and a music professor from Utah State University to Roosevelt, Utah, where he was to teach an extension class. I was along as a reporter doing a story on the professor.

The flight back to Logan that night was a windy, rainy one, and the professor clung to me for comfort. I was elated (by the adventure, not the professor), loving every moment of that wild, dark ride through the sky.

Another time, another story I was writing, found me buckled into a Pitts Special aerobatic biplane flown by an F-16 pilot who let me handle the controls for a couple of show-off rolls over Great Salt Lake. This was one of those bucket list check-offs that had my head spinning for days afterward. I was loving my life.

Looking toward the Sawtooths from the lodge on a sunny day.

Looking toward the Sawtooths from the lodge on a sunny day.

But the flight that Coonts’ stories most brought to mind was a more mild-mannered flight in the back seat of a four-sitter Cessna of a friend’s uncle who took me and his niece to lunch in Smiley Creek, Idaho. We took off from an airport in Twin Falls, Idaho, for the 125-mile or so flight, and landed on a grass runway across Highway 75 from the Smiley Creek Lodge. If I remember right, I had the lodge’s famous chili.

I think what made me remember this fine day was Coonts’ description of setting his plane down on a grass runway. I guess there are still several like the one in Smiley Creek that exist.  But the Sawtooth Mountains that provide the backdrop for the Smiley Creek primitive airport still make it the most scenic landing spot, I suspect.

Thanks Stephen for jogging my little gray cells back to this magical day.

Bean Pat: Janaline’s World http://tinyurl.com/nxsww4f Great armchair travel piece on Babylonstorem, a place I never knew existed before.

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“If you see a whole thing – it seems that it’s always beautiful. Planets, lives … But up close a world’s all dirt and rocks. And day-to-day, life’s a hard job.” – Ursula K.Le Guin

This photo doesn’t do City of Rocks justice but it was the best one I took because of being so pressed for time. — Photo by Pat Bean

Adventures with Pepper: Day One

            I took a longer detour than I had expected yesterday when I visited City of Rocks State Park in Southern Idaho on my way to Ogden, Utah, where I’ll be staying for the next few days before the real start of my journey begins.

But I was quite pleased with the shot I got up an osprey hig up in a tree over the Snake River. — Photo by Pat Bean

The reason that it was longer is that a bridge was out, and I had to double back to continue on my journey. It also made me pressed for time because I needed to get into Ogden in time for a party and a play my friend, Kim, had planned for our evening activities.

The City of Rocks is just that. It was a landmark for early pioneers traveling the California Trail. Just as impressive as the jumble of rocks that today are a haven for rock climbers — sadly I didn’t have time to do much exploring or picture-taking – was the City of Rocks Back Country Scenic Byway that encircled the Albion Mountains. And I got to see it twice.

My lack of time was also due to the fact that I had dawdled earlier in the morning, taking Maggie for one last long walk in Lake Walcott, and then spending a bit of time beside the Snake River to watch the parade of pelicans that lazed below the Minidoka Dam. And then there was the awesome osprey that was also hanging out beside the river that stopped me for a while, too.

Book Report: Travels with Maggie has grown to 43,888 words. I got up early and wrote this morning.

Bean’s Pat:  Since my internet connection is acting like a pouting brat who won’t come out of her room today, I haven’t been able to do much blog browsing. So the only Pat the Wondering Wanderer is giving out today is one to me for getting up early and writing, even though I partied until late last night.

Well, maybe also to the crew and actors of Avenue Q, the play I saw at the Rose Wagner Theater in Salt Lake City. I had never seen a raunchy puppet show before, and my friend was afraid I would be offended. I wasn’t. I laughed so hard I almost fell out of my seat. Despite its X rating, the play had a positive upbeat message. I mean how can you get offended at naked puppets, whose bodied ended at their midriffs, having sex.

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 “Life is an opportunity, benefit from it. Life is beauty, admire it. Life is bliss, taste it. Life is a dream, realize it. Life is a challenge, meet it. Life is a duty, complete it. Life is a game, play it. Life is a struggle, accept it. Life is tragedy, confront it. Life is an adventure, dare it. Life is luck, make it. Life is life, fight for it.” – Mother Teresa 

A Canada goose READY for take off at Farragut State Park in Northern Idaho. -- Photo by Pat Bean

 

Bean’s Pat: Martina’s Design Studio: Gone Too Far To Turn Back. http://photosbymartina.wordpress.com/ Words to live by.

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Somewhere over the rainbow is Mesa Falls in Idaho -- Photo by Pat Bean

My Favorite Places

 The best time for planning a book is while you’re doing the dishes. – Agatha Christie

NaNoWriMo Update … 25,743 words

Two glorious days of writing going well, followed by two miserable days of brain farts. At least I got a little more written these last two miserable days, and thankfully I was ahead of schedule.

Next two days have chunks of missing writing time: Doctor’s appointment, final physical therapy appointment (The therapy for my neck went much better today than the writing.), and drive to my oldest son’s for his the official retirement ceremony from the military after 37 years.

I sure hope Christie was right about writing going on even when you’re not writing. But just in case she’s not, please send words my way.

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 What is life? It is the flash of a firefly in the night. It is the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset.”Crowfoot saying

 

Tangerine frosting coats the clouds as a tall poplar tree looks out over an Idaho sunset. -- Photo by Pat Bean

 

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A flea and a fly in a flue

Were caught, so what could they do

Said the fly, “Let us flee.”

“Let us fly,” said the flea.

So they flew through a flaw in the flue.” – Unknown

 

The large quail at the entrance to the Carmella Winery in Southern Idaho made me giggle. -- Photo by Pat Bean

Travels With Maggie

Roadside sites, like a giant wooden California quail at the entrance to the Carmella Winery adjacent to Three Island State Park in Glenns Ferry, Idaho, make me giggle.

But it was a snicker that erupted from my lips when I saw the name of the Catholic Church in Glenns Ferry.  I really didn’t mean to be so irreverent, but I simply couldn’t help it.

“The Lady of Limerick Catholic Church” read the sign. .

Now a limerick is a kind of five-line poem that is usually a bit bawdy. Or,poetically explained:

The limerick packs laughs anatomical

In space that is quite economical,

But the good ones I’ve seen

So seldom are clean,

And the clean ones so seldom are comical.

 

The Lady of Limerick, to whom I issue an apology for my irreverence

Of course there was another explanation. The Lady of Limerick refers to a statue of the Virgin Mary located in the city of Limerick in Ireland. I now know that because I did a bit of research out of curiosity. It still seems a bit odd to me, however, that anyone knowing what most people think of when the word limerick is mentioned would still name a church that.

But to check if my sense of humor was askew, I told a friend that I had passed a church called “The Lady of Limerick.” She didn’t snicker, but she laughed so hard she almost choked.

At least I have company in my irreverence.

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 “In this world of change, nothing which comes stays, and nothing which goes is lost.” Anne Sophie

Thousand Springs from the wrong side of the Snake River. -- Photo by Pat Bean

Travels With Maggie

I never exactly got lost yesterday, but I never got exactly where I was going. My maps didn’t help, and my 25-year-old memories were useless.

I wanted to drive the section of Highway 30, known as the Thousand Springs Byway that runs south of Interstate 84 and west of Twin Falls – and I did. But I still never got to the actual site I was trying to find.

Back in the mid-1980s, when I was regional editor at the Times-News in Twin Falls, one of my girl friends took me right up to those rivulets of crystal clear water that gush out of the sides of the steep cliff and flow into the snake river.

I climbed among the tumbled rocks between the rivulets of water, and walked a short boardwalk that had water flowing beneath it. That was the place I wanted to visit again.

Instead, I found myself on the opposite of the river with only distant views of the springs. And after spending so much time at the nearby Haggarman Fossil Beds, which I was seeing for the first time and told you about in yesterday’s blog, I was short of time to search more.

So instead of close-up views of the springs, all I got was a distant view from the wrong side of the Snake River. And so that’s all you get to see, too.

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 “Travel and change of place impart new vigor to the mind.” Seneca

Looking down on the Snake River on a landscape over which wild horses roamed 3.5 million years ago, and one settlers crossed going West just 150 years ago. -- Photo by Pat Bean

Travels With Maggie

Did you know Idaho has a state fossil? I didn’t – until today when I visited Haggarrman Fossil Beds National Monument.

It’s the Haggarman horse, which lived about 3.5 million years ago. Fossils from about 30 of the animals, which sort of looks like a hybrid between a horse and a zebra, were found near Haggarman, Idaho, back in the late 1920s.

Turning my back on the Snake River, this upward view of the monument looks to the future, and hopefully less dependency on fossil fuels. It's a beautiful view. -- Photo by Pat Bean

The area, which overlooks the Snake River near Haggarman and is about 20 miles north of Twin Falls, has also turned up an extinct species of camel that once roamed North America, as well as a mastodon, a dirk tooth cat and a bone crushing dog that lived over 3 million years ago.

The area is considered a world treasure because it contains the richest known deposits from the Pliocene epoch, the period before the ice age and the same period as the early evolution of man.

Fascinating, or so it was to me.

But the monument also has something for those who only want to go back in time about 200 years. It includes a portion of the Oregon Trail, which was first used by fur trappers, and then in the 1840s for the great western migration.

Today’s first day back on the road was short in miles, but certainly covered a lot of time. Life is good.

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“As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.” — Henry David Thoreau

One can walk a pathway through 15-million-year-old lava fields at Craters of the Moon National Monument in Idaho's Snake River Plains. -- Photo by Pat Bean

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