Remember to check out all video and drone footage of this blog at Yami’s website:
Each New Years Eve my wife and I have a tradition of picking our New Year’s draft picks. We have a box of travel and adventure dreams placed on individual pieces of paper. We choose 5 for the year (up to 2 trades) and do our best to make them come to frution.
We pack fairly lightly when we travel and make the best with what we have. If we each had to bring an item to a desolate island, I’m sure I would bring my hammock and my wife would bring her camera bag.
My bag weighs about 1 pound, carried easily on 2 fingers and Yami’s bag weighs about 40 pounds (drone included) carried not so easily on the back….her face says it all.
Not very logical from a survival standpoint….
you cannot beat the relaxation of a hammock and without that camera bag, our trips would not be captured so beautifully!
This year one of our picks was Idaho. We had no particular reason to go to the Gem State other than the goal to see all 50 states, but we certainly have plenty of reasons to go back. Idaho is more than potatoes my friends!
As with many of our trips, we filled our itinerary up spontaneously. So on our layover in Utah, after a few mimosas, we thought it would be a great idea to look into a day trip some where.
3 mimosas+2 mimosas = WHITE WATER RAFTING!
**if you are thinking of rafting, bring your water proof case because it will be very hard to find one in this part of Idaho. We tried, we failed, and decided to just use a zip lock bag to cover the back casing….presto!!
NO GEAR, NO WATER PROOF GO-PRO, NO EXPERIENCE…..NO PROBLEM!!
This section of the Salmon River was called The Narrows. Notice the Go-Pro on my head (thank you Yami), as she literally poses for the camera in the bottom picture.
LIFE IS BEST WHEN YOU DON’T HAVE A PLAN
But if you dont have much time to get away from your busy lives, and you need a plan, take a long 3-4 days and do (what I like to call) “The Loop Tour”.
“THE LOOP TOUR”
Boise to Stanley via the Lowman Pass Scenic Drive into Stanley. Head South through Red Fish Lake and GalenaSummit into Ketchum-Sun Valley, and make your way back to Boise using Southern route.
Of course, depending on the season, your itinerary may obviously have a different version. We went in early July.
First, fly into Boise. This is the capital of Idaho, very eclectic, diverse, and a perfect blend of city and nature.
Yami loves to Yoga Pose in different locations as you will see along our journey
Downtown Boise has plenty of eateries, breweries, music and activities.
The people are very friendly and if you dont have an intinerary, trust us, you will have one if you share a table with the locals at Bittercreek in Downtown Boise at 246 N. 8th Street.
We were in Boise for about 1 hour and we made friends with our Uber Driver, whom happened to know some mutual friends of ours, and while at Bitter creek we were graciously swept away into a convertible BMW by two local ladies whom were eager to show us their hometown!
Bitter creek has delicious appetizers and plenty of good drinks. I would recommened the Riverbend IPA.
For a great lunch or dinner check out The Fork. My wife and I had the Sockeye Salmon Burger, asparagus fries and Alaskan Halibut. Delicious!!
I reserved a table the same day through their website with no difficulties.
The locals we met took us to another great area called the Boise River Greenbelt. This is a beautiful 25 mile stretch along the Boise River that offers great hiking, parks, beaches, and of course a place to cool off on a hot summers day. You can actually float along the river through the city.
We chose to catch some live music, have some refreshing libations, and cool off our feet in the river.
Our personal tour guides only came with a half day package so we were on our own two feet for the second half of the day.
After a few 4th of July celebration libations, “MONSTER” (credit from the movie Wild), was a bit too much for our weary bodies, so we were eager to use the new fancy bikes you can rent through your smart phones!
The next stop in your loop should be the scenic drive along the 21 to Stanley Idaho from Boise. The drive is an inspiring piece of art. It’s almost like your driving through an Ansel Adams photo.
Just a few scenes along the drive from Boise to Stanley. Pictures do not do justice. This drive is one of the best in America.
Stanley may be a small town but it has a personality that is calming.
Enjoying a beer at Bridge Street Bar and Grill/Woolley’s as Yami looks out to the Sawtooth Mountains and I peak through the bottom of my glass. Yami perfecting her images with her tripod!
From Stanley take the 75 south toward Ketchum-Sun Valley. Be sure to take your time on this drive. There are plenty of turns and the scenery is very distracting. Stop along the way at Galena Summit and of course Red Fish Lake (below).
Yami doing her go to yoga pose once again at Red Fish Lake. This time on a moving dock. Not bad.
Below you can see how my hammock comes in handy!!
Plenty to do at Red Fish Lake. Fishing, water sports, hiking, camping, and more!
We filled in our itinerary for two days by having the opportunity to be hosted by my sister in-laws family at a campground just north of Ketchum.
It was great to breathe the fresh air, watch the days nature around us slowly creep into dusk, share food and wine under the watchful lights of the stars and be encapsulated by the Sawtooth Mountains.
Thank you so much to our hosts!! Much love for the hospitality.
This is our dream one day. It’s in the dream box and waiting to come true. Our hosts, Dee Dee and Danny live in this camper. The energy they have is tangible. Minimalist with tons to offer. Living life the right way.
Make your way further south (30 minutes or less) to the town of Ketchum. Here, depending on the season, you can enjoy many activities. I’m certain the slopes here are busy in the winter but since we were there in July, we hiked Bald Mountain to it’s summit which offered amazing panoramic views of Ketchum-Sun Valley.
Bald Mountain Hiking Trail: Ketchum, Idaho
Before making your final section drive of the loop back to Boise, enjoy Ketchum after your hike.
Great local spots to hit up are Lefty’s and Grumpy’s.
http://leftysbarandgrill.com. We recommend the fried pickles and the Monkey Fries. The Hazzy IPA is a good local beer.
https://grumpyssunvalley.com. Grab a good burger and a schooner the size of your head!
Please leave time before you drive to assure your system is not under the influence as this petite town, can, and will knock you out if you let it.
Evidence as such…
Yami enjoyed this Schooner Mimosa at Grumpy’s and then when it came to survival, you got it, my hammock was there to save her!
When in doubt, hammock out 🙂 Find a river, some trees, hang her up, and good night.
If you cannot make the drive until the next morning and you do not have a handy dandy hammock, make your reservations at the best hotel in town:
The final section drive of “The Loop” is an isolated 2.5 hour drive via the 75 south, 20 west, into the 84. This is the fastest route but if you have time and want to head back the scenic way, go for it!!
We hope you enjoy!!
Please check out my wife’s VLOG for all of our captured video and drone footage @