Saturday, July 28, 2018

Ever Wonder How Toilet Paper is Made?

Well, we were determined to find out! So off we went on a tour of the Clearwater Paper Mill in Lewiston, Idaho.

It's hard to believe that toilet paper starts out like this!

Pulp arrives at the paper mill in gigantic trucks like this, with many, many wheels.

And then they dump it out by tipping the whole truck and trailer almost upright!

Somehow, the pulp gets made into a gigantic wet roll that will become toilet paper. Hard to get a picture because it was going so fast.

The paper is then dried. Each one of these giant rolls weighs 5000 lbs!

Then the giant rolls are rolled into long rolls, and then the long rolls are cut, all in a matter of seconds.

They also make paper towels and napkins, again starting from a gigantic roll. It was a great tour! I don't think they regularly offer tours, we just lucked out.

While in Lewiston, we also went to the Nez Perce National Historic Park -

And Idaho's first Territorial Capitol building, back in 1863.

One last look at our parking place at the Lewiston Elks Lodge. We'll really miss this place, and will definitely be back!

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Down the Snake in a Jet Boat

One day, 5 of us went on an all-day jet boat trip up the Snake River from Lewiston, Idaho. It was a very long day - 92 miles each way!

Right after we started, we went by the basalt columns that I had seen earlier, but this time I got a closer look.

We were hoping to see lots of wildlife, and this was our first sighting.

But wow! Look what's next! Actually we saw at least 6 Bald Eagles on the trip, all posing nicely for us.

Our first stop was at Garden Creek Ranch. Mail in the canyon is delivered once a week by boat.

We were welcomed by a gang of "rats with wings."

Right across the river is the border of Oregon and Washington.

Farther up canyon, the water gets really calm. Just for a little while, though...

Wow! There's a Golden Eagle! Or an immature Bald Eagle! (Sondra?)

Some people were even paddle boarding down the river.

We were surprised that we hadn't seen any Bighorn Sheep, but we saw lots on the return trip. A group of females -

And a couple big males hiding in the grass.

We stopped at Kirby Creek Lodge, where there was lots of rusty stuff!

Then we got to watch some head-butting rams.

And for those who didn't get wet enough, there was a stop at a waterfall.

And one last sighting of mommy and baby Bighorn Sheep.

The final thing we saw was the Buffalo Eddy petroglyphs and pictographs.

It was a great trip!

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Lewiston, Idaho - A Very Friendly Town

After our trip through Idaho, the WINs Lewis and Clark circuit arrived in Lewiston, Idaho, just across the river from Clarkston, WA. We stayed at the Elks Lodge, the friendliest lodge I have ever stayed at!

And it was in a beautiful spot overlooking the Snake River, which separates Idaho and Washington.

Right above our camping spot was a Canada goose up on a pole. I thought that was really strange. But when it was still there the next day, I realized it was fake.

But there were some real osprey nearby.

On our first day, the Elks Exalted Ruler, Tom, took us to the Lewis and Clark Discovery Center. He surprised us by dressing up as Sgt. Ordway, an important member of the Lewis and Clark expedition.

We posed in the same canoe that Tom and 6 other guys followed the Lewis and Clark expedition in, from Astoria to St. Louis back in 2004. They went over the mountains on horseback, but otherwise did it in this dugout canoe!

Sgt. Ordway also took us to the confluence of the Snake and Clearwater Rivers, where Lewis and Clark camped on their journey.

Wait - Sgt. Ordway has a phone call...

Also at the confluence is a fantastic sculpture.

It shows the animals of the Snake River area on one side, and the animals of the Clearwater River area on the other side.

This guy was looking for which side he was supposed to be on...

About 2 miles downstream on the Snake River from where we are parked are some beautiful basalt columns. One day, Jane and I drove down the Washington side to get a view of them.

Wow! There were some mother and baby Big Horn Sheep going down to the water to get a drink. A lot of the mothers have radio transmitters around their necks.

And now for the big news! WE'RE FAMOUS!!! We made the front page of the Lewiston newspaper -

AND we were interviewed for the local TV news. My rig made the news, but I was off jetboating, so I'm not on the video.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Following Lewis and Clark Through Idaho

From Missoula, we moved west along Highway 12. We spent a few days at Jack's Saloon, just east of the Montana/Idaho border. The highlight here is Lolo Hot Springs, where Lewis and Clark stopped on their journey west. I don't think it looked like this, though...

There is a very hot pool -

And an outside cooler pool.

Goats were the lawn mowers here.

We also visited a couple other Lewis and Clark sites - Glade Camp, where they camped -

And we had lunch at Packer Meadows, the same place that Lewis and Clark stopped for lunch. Our Wisconsin Packer fans really enjoyed it!

Then we did an individual slow trip through Idaho on Highway 12. I stopped at the Lochsa Historical Ranger Station, which remains much as it was in the early 1900s.

There's an old crossing of a creek that fortunately was closed.

I spent one night at McKay's Bend Campground, beautiful and right on the Clearwater River. We're across the Continental Divide, so it's all downhill from here!