Saturday, July 28, 2018

The Wild Side of Idaho.....Fluming!

Hi and welcome back. I can honestly say I hate Blogger. I either need a tutorial or a cheat sheet. I have no Idea why but if you add a video, it for some reason centers the text. But if you break into the code and "right" the video, the text goes right too. Anyway, today was kind of unplanned. The original plan got changed at 3am and then an 830am call brought back the need for a plan, but a way shorter plan then the original. Um, OK. Logan Canyon, 3 hours, back home. Didn't happen that way. But, I am not complaining. So, Kirt and I headed up Beaver Creek Canyon with the plan to take it over to Bear Lake and come home. We came down a canyon that was damn near equal to North Beach, St Charles I believe. As we neared the bottom, this huge hill presented itself with a trail to the top to overlook the lake. Old Yellow took the hill without even using the 4x4 system and made it look easy. We took some fotos and video and then went back down. This is the video going back down. We hit the bottom and it was close to lunch time so I decided that we would go north to Montpelier, eat lunch then go over the mountain and come out in Preston. Well, the guilty party decided we needed more time in the hills so we headed north towards Soda Springs. 
 We go to the outskirts and took an odd route into town. We went through the Beverly Hills of Soda Springs. Beautiful Mountain mansions with tons of wooded areas and the Bear River right in the middle. If I had the money.... So, that tour took us into downtown Soda Springs where we headed west out of town. We got out a few miles then took a left turn and headed south again. This was about the time that we lost the perfect 80° temp and it soared to the mid 90's. No problem tho, we turned on the ac and it made the journey a little bit better. Seriously, it still cools you even with no doors or windows. Its like your chest is cool and your back sweats like a mo-fo. It was along this route to Downey that Kirt mentioned how the pioneers of the valley got irrigation water to their fields. The Bear is really low in the valley altitude wise. It flows through a deep canyon so it wouldn't be easy to bring it up to the fields. Well, these dudes were smart. Up river where it doesn't go through a canyon they tunneled through the lava rock for a mile or so and where the tunnel ends is in these fotos.
So the canal is underground till it meets this gorge. They built a bridge for the canal over the river so it could be distributed to the valleys farms. They are damn proud of this engineering feat and invite you to go see it. Now, this is where "fluming" comes in. There is a trail right to where it comes out of the mountain. The water is moving fairly fast and you jump in and let the current carry you to a spot where you can exit. You climb up on top of the canal, there is a walkway, and walk back and do it again. It seems like it would be a blast. I am much to old and worn out to attempt it but if I was younger, I'd be there in a heartbeat. South of where the tunnel exits, the canal crosses the river again. We walked across, its about 80 feet high, with the canal under our feet. There were 4 kids down below using a rope swing to fly out over the water and land mid river. I have a video of these kids on my YouTube page if you care to watch. Hell, Idaho knows how to have fun. If anyone mentions a canal in Utah, It has to be covered or blocked out by a 15 foot electrified razor wire fence. 

The next stop on the tour was out in the middle of a wheat field. As you can see, its the Niter Ice cave. Sometime 1000's of years ago, the area has some active volcanoes. Mother Nature left a hollow lava tube that opens up right in the middle of a field. The state has added some railing to aid in walking into the cave and its pretty damn cool. Literally. If you blink you miss the turn off and you would never know its there. When you get into the cave a ways, there is frost on the walls. We didn't have very good flashlights so we didn't go in very far but it was so nice. What I can't figure out is why the discoverer didn't build their house right next to it. Think about it. Your very own fridge/freezer. The sign does mention that the family did store stuff in there, but the house was a ways away. Anyway, it was kinda interesting. From there it was down to the Oneida Dam on the Bear. We checked it out and decided to head for home at this point. All in all, our 4 hour trip turned into 9 hours but they were 9 good hours. I saw a bunch of new things and saw more trails to explore. Sweet, huh?  Jeep on my friends! 

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