Luke had picked out a campsite in another National Forest north of the previous one, but along the way Brooke really wanted to stop by and get a picture of something she saw on a website for the 5 Weirdest Things In Idaho. It was called the “Dog Bark Park Inn”, a bed and breakfast literally shaped like a beagle. It was a cute little place that also sold wooden dog shaped carvings. We took a photo let the dogs check it out and then headed to the forest.
This was our first campsite that had an established fire pit with a grill grate. It ended up being really nice for cooking, but it also meant we could actually HAVE a fire even with the fire ban in place. The site had a picnic table too which is really nice for games and art. We found a shady spot, set up camp and met a few of our neighbors.
The rest of the day we got a fire started and hung out together. This was one of our “use up our pantry box” weeks so we got our dinner started and snuggled up by the fire. It was a peaceful night.
The next morning was chilly. Our poor Phoenix city dogs weren’t adequately prepared for the cooler temperatures we’ve had on this trip, so they were more than happy to snuggle in the blanket we put out for them. What we didn’t expect was for them to lay on the same tiny chair … together.
After breakfast and when the temperature warmed up a bit, Luke decided he wanted to go for a dip in the creek while Brooke grabbed the laundry supplies out of the car. It had been about 15 years since either of us had done laundry in a bucket and used a clothesline so it was about time to regain our skills. We hung the perfect amount of clothesline for the clothes we had and felt pretty lucky about that.
While our clothes dried we decided to take a walk down the creek. It was our first rocky creek walk and the dogs had fun hopping up and down the different rocks along the bank. The rocks were pretty slippery so we tried to stay on the dry ones. It was a great walk and a fun way to get through the heat of the day. After the walk, we settled in for an afternoon of card games and art. We played games into the night while we waited for our dinner to finish cooking. We sat by the fire and enjoyed some good conversation before bed.
The next day we woke up a little later and ate the last of the bagels we had. We decided to take a walk down the creek again, but this time head the other direction. It seemed more slippery than the day before, but that was probably because we had to walk in the water a little bit more. Luke actually crossed the creek at one spot, but it was very slippery and there were some rapids, so we didn’t think the dogs would make it across very well. Though, at one point down the hike we both went halfway in the water to cool off. Much to our surprise Shoester was following close behind! He swam past Brooke and almost past Luke, but Luke stopped him. With a lot of encouragement, we got Sox also towillingly swim out to us. That was the highlight of the walk for Luke because the dogs have never willingly agreed to be in the water.
We came back and made lunch because Brooke was starving and we played a few more card games. A few hours later our neighbors invited us to enjoy a chicken and elk dinner with them. How could we say no to that? We brought Sox and Shoester along and enjoyed a wonderful dinner together. The family, who we called the Mandalin Serenaders, composed of two sisters and their husbands. Most of them were born and raised in Idaho so we learned a lot about the state and how the sisters had grown up camping in the same spot. After dinner, we enjoyed their warm gas firepit and continued in conversation. We really appreciated the invitation and the tasty meal we had with them. Before we left the next morning we made sure to snap a photo with them and say our goodbyes.
We decided instead of a motel night, that we would try our first KOA campsite in Montana. So we headed out, and on our way there we stopped at a random winery for a bathroom break (and to let a hitch hiking caterpillar out of the car). It was also a great excuse to try some huckleberry wine since we had seen so many signs for huckleberry products for weeks. We enjoyed a couple of the KOA amenities such as a hot tub but we both agreed it wasn’t worth the cost just for a shower and breakfast.
Our Montana drive was overall slightly disappointing because there were a few forest fires in the area and it was pretty smoky. We both agreed that we want to visit Montana again though, especially Glacier Park, which you will see a glimpse of in our next post.
Go be adventurous friends,
– the beaucampers