Before we leave BLM Cottonwood CG, we had a bit of excitement yesterday. Dale and I were sitting in our chairs by the banks of the Salmon River. Morgan was laying beside us. Pretty soon, Dale stands up and says that Morgan was out swimming in the river. She took herself for a swim. Well, we couldn’t see her. We went as far down the bank as we could and couldn’t find her. While Dale walked the riverbank, I went through the campground in case she was following her nose. I didn’t find her and Dale didn’t either. I was having thoughts of going to bed without my dog and getting panicky.
I went back to the river, searching down river to see if she had gotten out. About that time one of the women campers next to us came over to ask us if that was our dog on the island. We looked over and here was Morgan, soaking wet, trying to get back across the river. The river splits and an island is in the middle of that split. The current is very strong there. So here is our whining dog trying to get back to us. She would try to swim over to us, get caught in the current and was swept back to and got footing to get back on the island. She tried this a few times and couldn’t get close to us. I was afraid she would tire out before we could get her back with us. There was no way either one of us could swim to her. So Dale thought he would go up on the road and find a place to bring her to a calmer part of the river. While he was gone she just wouldn’t quit trying to swim over. I was beside myself. So I started throwing rocks up stream in front of her. This is a game with us. She started swimming toward the spots where the rocks went in.
As I watched her, she was splashing and trying to catch water in her mouth as she swam toward the rocks. She had no idea of the danger she was in. That’s my Blondie. She finally got up stream enough that when the current caught her she was pushed over to my side of the river. I did have to wade in pretty far to grab her – one had holding a bush so I wouldn’t go in and one grabbing her. We got her in and she shook off and was jumping around. I was exhausted, physically and emotionally. And wet. I didn’t have to go to bed without my dog! After she was settled down she threw up. Dale got to looking at that stuff and he found fish bones so it looks like she ate a dead fish. She got a bath and put in the house. No more river for her. This all put an anticlimax on our stay and we left about 8 am next morning for Challis, ID.
We stopped in Challis looking for a cafe for breakfast. We found othe only cafe in town! When we entered the cafe it was full of locals! We had a great breakfast and pretty inexpensive too. Stopped at the local market for some veggies and headed off to Stanley.
The drive was beautiful as the Salmon River was on our left all the way and mountains on the right. At some points in the road it reminded us of the coast road out of Grants Pass to Brookings! We stopped at all the historical markers and learned about the area – silver mining and gold mining, how towns started etc. Then we came around the corner and this was our first view of the Sawtooth Mountains!
Stanley wasn’t what we thought it was. The population is 900 people. We saw a lot of log homes, log motels, and log cabins. It looks like a recreation town. We stopped at an outdoor store having a sale. Lots of great stuff but prices we aren’t willing to pay. The food market looked as if they were closing up. The town sits along the Salmon River.
We subscribe Days End which is a log of dispersed camping. This is an Escapee benefit and is complied by RVers. We had our list for Stanley and found a few camp sights on Forest Service land. We found our spot and set up. The Salmon River is way down the cliff from us but we have a great spot for the next 4 days. What I like about this kind of camping is how dark it gets at night. Oh, speaking of night, did you see the full moon last night and the planet Jupiter aligned with it? It was pretty awesome.