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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    4,480

    Default Tok - Whitehorse

    BTW, Tok to Whitehorse is a comfortable day's drive... even with roadworks, stopping at the most photographed church, border crossing delays, etc. You might like to take a break at Kluane NP or Kluane Lake. Both nice areas. Just be aware, the moment you cross the border, you know you are in Canada. The roads are no comparison.

    Lifey

  2. #12

    Default

    If you are coming up through NV to get to Bruneau Canyon you will be coming up through UT, WY would be a side trip for this one. Most direct route would be up through SLC, depending on the time of year you are coming through you will want to make the jog over to Farmington (just above Ogden) to visit the fantastic fruit stands... this would be best done late summer - early fall. Have you ever made it to the painted desert and natural arches in UT? If not, well worth the trip and I would suggest a stop in Mexican Hat, UT. I took my husband and his girls that way last summer when returning from AZ to ID. It was the first time I went that way and was not disappointed, the little hotel on the cliff we stayed in was so quaint and the girls were facsinated with the small bats that were flying around catching bugs. Our 4 y/o was amazed by the HUGE beattle that was crawling around on the sidewalk. Up through Moab and Valley of the Gods is a neat trek, as well as all the Hopi jewelry stands the girls got to go to. I educated my "well-traveled" husband with the experience of how my family does road trips. It's about a 14 hour drive if you do the whole loop through UT and back up to Provo/SLC but worth every minute.

    If you are going up to WY from there and through southeast Idaho on your way to Mountain Home I would suggest the Palasides. If you want to go directly from say Las Vegas area up through UT, will depend on whether you want go through AZ and up through Flagstaff and through Kanab, UT. I think you would find that drive to your liking, lots of out of the way places that are rich in history of the pioneer days. You can continue up to Mountain Home, ID, Hell's Canyon and Shoshone Falls are not that far from Bruneau Canyon, ( you may want to side trip to Hagerman, again great place to find some wonderful fruit stands if you go at the right time of year). Twin Falls is about 60ish miles up the road on the 84 from Mountain Home, traveling back and forth from Pocatello to Boise we use Mountain Home as a pit stop and them Twin Falls as the next pit stop. I would suggest going up through Sun Valley over Galena Summit to Stanley and Challis, then up to Salmon, loop through Montana and either up to Missoula ( in which case you will pass right by Fairmont on the way to Missoula). If you choose that route you can go see Wallace, ID, a neat little silver mining community, and Silver City, MT. You will pass Cataldo Mission which is a short side trip off that route, and go over Fourth of July Pass. I have not taken this route since they finished the interstate that overlooks Couer d Alene Lake but heard the view is spectacular. From there up through Couer d Alene to Rathdrum and Spirit Lake (I have family in Rathdrum so am partial to coming home to that area). You can go up to Priest River/Lake area and Sandpoint from there then on to Bonners Ferry. Very few of the roads on this route are more than two lane highways with fairly light traffic.

    Coming back I would suggest taking the route down through Lewiston and McCall, again, mostly two lane highway with lots of little historical offshoots you would enjoy. All of this trip would be full of chances to see plenty of wildlife, some spectacular country with a rich diversity, and lots of not so crowded spots for you to enjoy.

    Give me a better idea of your time frame of how long your trip will be, and when you are planning on going, as well as starting point and I can give you a better idea of which direction would be the most appealing to you. Also, since you aren't into the fishing portion, do the more historical sites appeal to you or is it more for the scenic aspect? Some of these places will require a good deal of hiking so I can tell you which to avoid if you are physically limited to short hikes. Those are some of the things that will really determine which way you take on this particular trip.

  3. #13

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    Alaska roads are no comparison to the lower 48, but I have been told as much by friends. I am used to traveling off the beaten path myself in ID, UT, WY, and MT so I'm not expecting smooth blacktop the duration of the drive :). I intend to enjoy the trip, take what time I need, and let the kids get the experience that they wouldn't get if their dad was behind the wheel in a rush to get from point A to point B. I'm not opposed to taking my time and taking side trips as long as I know where I'm going due to the fact I am traveling alone with kids and don't want to be lost in "no-man's land".

  4. #14

    Default

    Sorry, I reread through that and noticed my typo... Mountain Home and Twin Falls are about 80ish (85 to be more precise) miles apart, not 60. My apologies for that mistake, point being they are only about a couple hours apart, road construction is usually a concern on the east side of Twin Falls and up through Jerome so that can slow your trip, but if you are coming from either way you should pass through Hell's Canyon area to get to Bruneau Canyon. I am unfamiliar with any way to go without passing through this area, if there is I would love to hear of it as it would be somewhere I have not been yet in ID.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    4,480

    Default My unconventional ways.

    Sorry, I can't answer most of your questions. Those decisions I will probably not make till I am well and truly on the road. Unlike you, I am not really interested in where I end up at the end of day... well, sorta... but not specifically.

    So let me be a little more specific, now that I have acquired my Rand McNally. Tell me, what is the road like from Greer to Pierce and Headquarters, on through the Clearwater National Forest to Superior MT? Or the road from Kamiah, which meets up with the aforementioned just over the N Fork of the Clearwater River?

    If I end up going to Hell's Canyon, I will probably end up somewhere in the vicinity of Lewiston. Maybe I should then head towards Kooksia and take 12 to Missoula. What is that road like?

    Both those options would take me to Missoula before Sandpoint.

    There are also some roads I have been considering up near the Cabinet Dam and through Cabinet to Athol. And what about the road which goes from Naples to the border along the west side of the Kootenai? (I realise there may not be a border crossing there.)

    And any other similar roads with which you are familiar, up that way. I'd really like to hear.

    Lifey

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    4,480

    Default "no-man's land"

    If you have The Milepost and some good detailed maps, such as AAA or CAA, and don't go wondering off on unmarked bush tracks, then I can assure you you will not end up in "no-man's land". Any side trip you do to a sign posted attraction will be easy to find and probably very popular. One of those spots I urge you to spend some time at, is Athabasca Falls just south of Jasper. In June these should be quite good... though lack of snow may affect the flow.

    Just in case you are still wondering... the route you will be taking, be it the Alcan or Cassair, is a route well travelled. Rarely will a few minutes go by without seeing another vehicle. In fact, I used to treasure the occasional ten or fifteen minutes without seeing anyone or anything.

    Lifey

  7. #17
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    2,389

    Default

    We went to both the hot springs that were closest to White Horse (Tahkini, I believe), and the Lliard Hot Springs. Of the two, I really liked Liard best, but your mileage may vary. The reason we liked Liard was that they were far more rustic. Tahkini was a cement pool, very developed, where Liard was like a very hot (unlined) pond with a few amenities. We did not walk to the 2nd spring at Liard, as we were told it was the hotter of two and the first was hot enough for us. We actually visited this twice, once on the way up and once on the way back. We did not return to Tahkini on the way back.

    There was a lot of parking at Liard, enough for two rigs, as it was a provincial park. The provincial park did have space for RV's overnight, though on the way up we stayed at a rustic commercial place across the highway (which had 15 amp electrical service). On the way down, we just stopped for lunch and moved on after a good soak.


    Donna

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    4,480

    Default Liard Hot Springs

    Oh Donna, you bring back so many memories. That is exactly how I too, enjoyed the hot springs, in the summer of 2004. But now, it's gone. Now there is a huge development, at an attrocious price just to drive in, let alone use the hot springs. And the rustic RV park across the road now has a mansion on. I believe the RV park is now within the development at the hot springs. I was both disappointed and disgusted at the changes... and the charges as well as the vandalism of this natural resource. These hot springs which were quite adequite for probably centuries, if not longer, have been fenced off from the general traveller. No longer can you park your car, walk the boardwalk to the springs, and jump in the pool.

    Lifey

  9. #19

    Default

    It has been too many years since I was on the road through Greer to tell you much accurately but all of the above mentioned routes are( or were) two lane "highways" with little traffic and lots of scenery. You would really enjoy the trip through Kanab from Page, AZ, very little traffic, neat little out of the way roadside shops, and lots of rustic cabins. If you come up through Tremonton, UT and Malad, ID you can cut over through Snowville, UT which is mostly two lane roads. There are alot of little out of the way Hot Spring areas that are not really developed, or at least there were when I was in my 20's, single, and free to roam wherever I wanted. You may not enjoy Fairmont Hot Springs much as it has been developed extensively over the years, my kids LOVE the waterslide and Hot swimming pool. I enjoy the Kamiah area, and would suggest you make the trip from Twin Falls up through Stanley/Challis area, this is a very rustic area again with limited traffic, I have gone an hour or more at times without passing anyone. It is traveled enough during the height of the Salmon runs and you will see a lot of Fly fishermen/women along the Salmon river. I would definately suggest that route for you through Idaho, I think it would best suit you're traveling style. I am not as familiar with some of the off roads in MT but as I have kept to mostly the western side of the state. All of the roads up through Sandpoint and Bonners Ferry are two lane unless they have done some SERIOUS road construction in the last few years but I cannot see any benefit for the state to have developed those roads.

    I am less familiar with Central Idaho then I would like but have heard a good portion of what used to be two lane roads have now been improved but the scenery is still great. There are lots of little side roads that loop back to the Interstate from the Montana border in northern Idaho, if you have no set time and can wander at will the sky is the limit. Lots of places to camp that are not established camp sites.

    I will admit that I am not the "Road Warrior". I know the side roads through most of UT and ID, more recently UT and southern ID. I do have family in northern Idaho that I can try to contact, my Uncle enjoys hopping in his truck and disappearing into the mountains, he is the best source for more recent information about the Sandpoint area. I will see if I can track his wandering behind down and get some up to date info for you as far as the improvements that may have been made to the area that would not appeal to you.

    Again, I would probably suggest the road through Sun Valley and over Galena Summit to Stanley. If you like you can cross back over to ID from Missoula to Kooskia and on into Orofino. I was a teenager the last time I did the trip through Lewiston and Moscow, it was a beautiful trip on mostly two lane highway but it is a well traveled road. The 93 has light traffic and you will follow the river a good portion of the trip. I have been through Lolo many times and have heard there is a Hot Springs there but have never had the time to investigate the truth in that.

    You can avoid traveling the Interstates most of the trip and can cut up from Missoula on the 200 which is once again a two lane that to my knowledge is still only lightly traveled in favor of the quicker route on the 90. Taking the 200 will take you off the beaten path but you will miss some neat spots as well.

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