Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Spooky Halloween Marauder

As usual Whiskers (that cat that adopted us) was driving me crazy by scratching on the window begging for food yesterday morning. So that I wouldn't have to put up with his antics while trying to enjoy breakfast, I went out to feed him. The box with the cat food sits on the back porch next to the cat dish with a carton of magazines on top. Both had disappeared! This was the sight that met my eyes.

Usually, I expect to see this.

As I looked out into the darkness, I discovered the carton of magazines but couldn't see any sign of the box with the cat food. Spooky.

Later, after it got light enough to see, I searched again and found the food box about fifteen feet away from its usual location, upside down in the trees. The lid was nearby.

The food was still in the box. Whatever went to all that trouble to try to get the cat food must have been a very disappointed critter. What do you think was the mystery marauder? A herculean racoon? Hope your Halloween isn't quite so spooky!

Maybe these fall photos I took while on my walk last week will calm your fears.:)

The ward trunk or treat certainly got us in the Halloween spirit last night. We're looking forward to doing our traditional trick or treating tonight taking loaves of nut bread to friends and neighbors.

We hope your Halloween is filled with plenty of fun!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Another Fabulous Discovery on the Backroads of Idaho

The forecast for last weekend was sunny with temperatures in the 70s! We couldn't pass up the opportunity to go camping in spite of the fact that it was the middle of October. Jim picked out the location because he did a lot of camping with the scouts when we first moved to Idaho and, therefore, knows lots of cool places to camp. It was late when we finally got on the road. This is what the landscape looked like after we exited the freeway and began meandering down Blacks Creek Road--not very promising--but I could tell Jim was excited about the place we were headed.

It soon grew dark and I could no longer see the scenery. We drove on that dirt road for about two hours before finally coming to our destination (just as we were about to give up hope that we would ever find it)--Rattlesnake Creek Road. There was a campground at the end of it but we soon grew tired of driving on the narrow dirt road and pulled off into the first "camping" spot we could find. It was pitch dark and we couldn't see a thing. We could hear the rushing water of Rattlesnake Creek. As we turned on the outside lights of the camper, we discovered a fire ring! We built a fire, roasted marshmallows and consumed a couple of Nutella s'mores to celebrate our arrival before turning in for the night.

The next morning, we discovered that we were in a narrow canyon. The ghostly spikes of dead trees from a previous forest fire cast an eery spell on the fall landscape.

After a hearty breakfast, we climbed on our bikes to explore the rest of the dirt road leading to the campground. We stopped often to catch our breath (with the excuse of having to take a picture :)). The gradual uphill climb for two and half miles was a bit taxing.

You can't tell from the look on his face but Jim really was having a great time. For some obscure reason, his smile for the camera doesn't look like one at all. Rattlesnake Creek was beautiful!

We could see snowcapped mountains in the distance.

The road was surprisingly busy. We encountered several hunters. Some even stopped to ask if we knew the best location for finding deer. I'm afraid, being the avid hunters that we are, that we weren't much help.:)

We wore our reflective vests so we wouldn't be mistaken for deer.

We finally found the campground! It was very primitive. There was no latrine in sight and the only picnic table was quite charred.

However, the view of the distant mountains was fabulous.

The ride up to the campground took over an hour. The ride back to our camper took about fifteen minutes. We hardly had to peddle at all as we sped downhill. We did stop to take a few more pictures because the sun was just right.

I was quite pleased with our discoveries of the morning. As we headed for home, Jim assured me that there were more hidden gems to come.

To humor Jim, I donned the hunting cap for a picture but refused to wear it. Are you surprised? We encountered fantastic views of rock formations and fall colors as we drove to the tiny town of Prairie.

We passed the town in a blink of the eye but had to stop to take a picture of the view of the Trinity Mountains.

After our picnic lunch outside of Prairie, Jim informed me that the best was yet to come. I was stunned at the views that met my eye as we rounded the next corner. You really had to be there to appreciate the stark beauty of the immense vista.

We wound down the steep road into the ravine where we stopped to photograph the beautiful south fork of the Boise River.

As we continued our journey home we marveled at the vivid yellow leaves,

the tip of Arrowrock Reservoir,

and the spectacular fall colors.

We ended our tour with a stop at the historic site, Bonneville Point, where in 1832 the Idaho explorer, Captain Bonneville, first saw the wooded Boise valley. He had been traveling through the desert for many weeks and was excited to see so many trees. Legend has it that he exclaimed, "Les bois, les bois, voyez les bois" or "the trees, the trees, look at the trees" and thus Boise received it's name. Thirty years later, the old Indian trail that Bonneville followed was used by thousands of Oregon Trail emigrants. We followed it for a few feet and marveled at the view of Boise, city of trees.

Thanks Jim for another grand adventure, in true traditional style!