Highway to Hell (that's a song Mom)

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Hells Gate State Park

Flag of United States  , Idaho
Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Rock on! Yeah...... Highway to Hell, everyone sing along....

Okay - so we got up early, well the reason we got up early was because Collin jumped down from the bunk onto me.

So - finally we get up, grab the doggies, some coffee and head out for a walk to the lake. Truly beautiful. So clean, majestic mountains everywhere, pristine waters, just serene.
Collin rode his scooter and we walked to the bait shop by the water.

We rented a paddleboat and toodled around for a bit. Finally, leaving Wallowa Lake and heading into Joseph for some lunch. What a cute little town. The bronze sculptures were amazing - see photos.

Took lots of pictures – perfect temperature maybe upper 60s, no wind, just a lovely day. Went to the grocery store for some snacks and picked up St. Helens steaks for dinner.It was
about 70 degrees in at 2pm. Looks like a scene from The Sound of Music. Quaint old storefronts. You keep expecting to look up and see a stage coach rolling down the street. OK, not really, but a lot great small shops and restaurants without the usual tourist trap feel. It's a cool, old small town in a beautiful setting without being a tourist trap.

The drive out of Joseph through Enterprise then north on 129. Goes through beautiful rolling hills and pastures with occasional thick patches of Ponderosa pine, peaking at around 4700’ at the
Chief Joseph Canyon viewpoint. Canyon looks like a green version of the Grand Canyon. Fading brakes winding down to the steep winding descent into the Grande Ronde. Looking down the lush green slopes that spill into the canyon at ever increasing rate, you look down on the tops of the majestic pine and firs and note the stream, or river, at the bottom, no doubt the Grande Ronde, winding like a silvery blue ribbon. Collin refused to get out of the car to have a look because I forbade him to watch cartoons. Check out a map or Google map Joseph and Enterprise, Oregon.

Old weather beaten, falling down farmhouse yields great photos (Christine would have spent at least an hour here - I only stayed about 15 minutes - left when I started to hear the owner of the land yelling something - didn't want to find out). Great rolling fields of wheat, rye, oats as the road winds down into Clarkston, WA and just across the Snake River into Lewiston, Idaho.

Skipping rocks into the Snake River with Collin.

I watched FOUR barn owls swoop silently through the trees and over the open fields in the dusk. Beautiful, large white and tan owls (see photos I snagged off the web, my camera couldn't capture them in the dim light).

Collin went to bed last night around 11pm – woke at 7? Very cranky and tired. This may be a common thing - but then again, he'll sleep in the car during the day! Whew!

We really like the trailer – MUCH better than tent camping, heck yeah! Especially with dogs and a kid!
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Teri on

Love the barn picture! Our trip is still fresh in my mind (imagine that) so I can see what you're seeing - did you take the tram up Mt Howard? That was a great side trip. Little children fed ground squirrels until their cheeks were almost popping!

Are you heading to Coeur D'Alaine (spelling bad)?

Christine on

Wow, you captured it all Michelle, with the mountains, the bronze bronk and the flag... I absolutely loved Joseph - you have me yerning to go back!! And wow, the owls...

Terri - I've ridden the Mt.Howard Tram - a long rickety ride that just keeps going! When I visited, the mountain was also covered with swarms of butterflies... They were everywhere - What a fantastic place!

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