CannonTrek.ID - Big Bikes in the Idaho Backcountry

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Cannonshot, Jul 16, 2015.

  1. joenuclear

    joenuclear Still here....

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    Wonderful update CS! Thanks. But I have to ask. Did you leave anything at home?

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  2. Bug Dr.

    Bug Dr. Extroverted Loner

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    Still glued to the computer monitor reading this RR. I really like that you have found back roads off of the BDR to explore. It seems that there is no end to gravel roads in Idaho to discover. Once again, very nice job with pulling all of the history into this report. Brilliant!
    Mike
  3. MizzouRider

    MizzouRider Long timer

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    This RR just keeps getting better. I've got to figure out a way to ride some of this.
    Thanks again for posting.
  4. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    Wallace Part II

    Wallace is in the Silver Valley Mining District. Nearby Kellogg attracted miners and Wallace attracted executives hence the notable supply of nice brick buildings in town.
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    The 1997 movie Dante's Peak was shot in Wallace using locals as extras.
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    The town burned in 1890. In 1910, about 1/3 of the town burned (100 buildings). Some interesting THEN AND NOW pictures of Wallace after the fire.
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    Lana Turner is from Wallace.
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    The town has been involved in a lot of goings on including miners wars. In 1929 they were raided for illegal booze. Some officials went to jail. In 1992 the FBI appeared to take out the gambling machines in local businesses.
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    In 2004, the Mayor declared Wallace "the center of the universe". A sewer access cover was identified as the precise location of the center. It has been replaced with a custom manhole cover that marks the spot with "Center of the Universe. Wallace, Idaho". The event is celebrated on the third Saturday in September.
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    During the mining wars the mine owners hired detectives to infiltrate the unions to identify who the union leaders were. One Pinkerton Detective managed to get elected to an office in one of the unions. Eventually people got onto him and he had to flee for his life through a hole he cut in the floor of his boarding house room that he kept covered by a rug. He survived and later went on to chase Butch and The Wild Bunch.
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    Breakfast at this quaint place.
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    Wallace had the last stop light on the cross country interstate highway. The highway choked down to local streets. When it came time to complete the interstate through here, officials wanted to put in an at-grade highway which would have taken out much of the town. The town protected themselves by getting historic status (registry) for all their buildings. Thus, the federal highway folks had to float the interstate above the town.
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    The 1902 railroad depot is a real beauty.
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    The first floor is finished off with buff colored bricks from China. The bricks came over as ballast on tea ships. The railroad got the bricks and brought them here.
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    Watering downtown plants using an ATV.
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    More Wallace and Silver Valley in a bit . . .
  5. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    Wallace Part III

    We head up into Burke Canyon to check out some mining history just NE of town.
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    When miners found out about the company planting spies among them they blew up the Frisco Mill.
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    Much of the issue had to do with unions and getting the $3.50/day rate of pay. Some owners would rather close than unionize.
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    Old mining building.
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    The creek bed has obviously been mined. There is some evidence of water related remediation going on here as well.
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    Back through town to check out the west end of the Silver Valley Mining District.
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    Sunshine Mine Disaster Memorial.
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    In 1972, 91 workers died as a result of a fire in the mine.
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    You really want to page through this US Dept of Labor slideshow about the disaster if you have any interest in what a modern mining accident might involve. The fire broke out on May 2. Eighty-one were rescued on May 2 and two weren't rescued until May 9th.

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    Because of this disaster, every miner in the US now carries a self-rescuer to give them a chance against carbon monoxide.
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    Tourist mine.
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    As I mentioned, Kellogg started as a residential company town.
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    Gondola up some mountain for a scenic view.
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    During the wars, the miners swiped a train in Burke, loaded it up with 3,000 pounds of explosives, and then took it to Kellogg to blow up the Bunker Hill Mine mill which was the most advanced in the world at the time. 800 miners piled onto the train and rode it to Kellogg. Bunker Hill executives fled. When they blew the mill, two men were killed. One was a non-union miner and the other was a union miner accidentally shot by his union brothers.
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    Martial law was declared and the Gov came down hard. Troops rounded up miners into hastily created bull pens. In the end everyone got off via a jury of their peers.
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    Once the Gov was out of office, he was assassinated because of his actions to suppress the miners - particularly his implementation of a permit system to work for which you had to declare you were never a union miner and didn't blow anything up. This was essentially a blacklist because state agents would investigate you to find out the facts. Anyway, the ex-Gov went for a stroll one night. When he came home and opened his gate, he blew up. A guy was caught right away. He claimed he was working for the unions. He went to the big house and the unions got off.
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    This looks like a lot of smelter slag here in Smelterville.
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    There is an active mine just outside of Wallace.
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    Supplies for the mine including some carts for transporting explosives.
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  6. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    Thanks! Kind of a sloppy looking load that morning. :lol3

    Thanks! Glad you are enjoying the history.

    Thanks! It sure is a wonderful place to ride and explore.
  7. N-Id-Jim

    N-Id-Jim Long timer

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    where elephants roam
    Ahhh. Wallace, the center of the universe, and the 1313 club! My neck of the woods...

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    Did you go to Murray?? Great stuff!!
  8. BigDogAdventures

    BigDogAdventures Fart Letter Supporter

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    Lot of perverts in Wallace---to cheap to pay to get in the Bordello Museum.

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    Then go to wash their riding gear in the laundry---and don't have anything to put on.
    Got really ugly when they went next door to the donut shop for change----wearing nothing but motel towels.

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    The bus in Wallace has a lot of history.
    It's a 50's model Flxible (not Flexible) bus--what is so interesting is this bus is the same company
    that made Flexible motorcycle sidecars that leaned and were made way back in the 20's--now how interesting is that.
    It had a straight 8 (inline) Buick motor in it. The company's name was originally Flexible, but they
    changed it to Flxible.
    The owner of this bus owns the "Red Light Gas Station" in town---he bought it--drove it to this spot and it has never moved since.



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    2wingdoc05 likes this.
  9. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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  10. Seventy One

    Seventy One Tick Magnet

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    Hangin' at the Warren.
    Did you have any bear sightings? What precautions did you take with regards to bears?

    After doing a little research online it appears that even soap and shampoo should be properly stored when in bear country.

    Love the ride report! Very informative. Thanks.
  11. DruiD

    DruiD riding too fast

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    Location:
    Holmen, WI
    We saw no bears. A little scat in some areas on the roads.

    It's always prudent to take the basic precautions, ie no food or toiletries in your tent at all.

    In the areas with known bear activity, I put my food in the hard panniers on my bike.

    We didn't hang our food or make a production out of dealing with it at all.

    In my experience, you are more likely to have problems with rodents or raccoons getting into your things.
  12. Max Wedge

    Max Wedge ADVenture mowing

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    IN IN IN. A little late, but IN. :jack
  13. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    Wallace to Farragut Part I

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    Heading out of Wallace. There are a few remnants of the mining towns that used to be along the way.
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    I altered the standard BDR here as I planned to take in some ghost towns (Eagle and Murray). In the end I trimmed those off this trip out of time concerns for the other folks along on the trip. The Earps were up this way and staked out a mining claim over there. When that didn't work out I think they had a gambling operation out of a tent for a bit. Eventually they got pissed off and left.
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    Fishing.
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    Airstrip at Magee Ranger Station.
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    The cabin was built in 1922 as a residence for the district ranger. You can rent it for $55 a night and go riding on the 34 miles of trails that are good for motorcycles in the area.
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    Clark Fork is named for Captain Bill Clark. It idled along for years until the railroad slipped a siding in here. Not much going on now. Big fish hatchery.
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    Heidenau hanging in there.
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  14. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    Wallace to Farragut Part II

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    Lake Pend Oreille. 43 miles long and 1,150' deep.
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    Sandpoint was a big cedar lumber town. They were the largest shipper of cedar telegraph, telephone, and electric light poles in the northwest.
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    Sarah Palin is from Sandpoint.
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    Two mile long bridge out of town.
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    Bayview is a harbor town on the lake.
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    Bayview also has submarine testing.
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    Why is there a submarine base in Idaho?
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    It is difficult to find out more about what goes on here since you have to have a *BBR security clearance (*Burn Before Reading) and a need to know.
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    Forest fires were burning nearby. This is a fire camp.
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    Probably a supply and observation helicopter for wild land fire fighters.
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    This inland naval base came into being after the Pearl Harbor attack. Ellie Roosevelt (President Frankie Roosevelt's wife) noticed the lake during a flight to Seattle. She knew her hubby was looking for a secure inland location for a major base so she mentioned it to him and he checked it out.
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    Not much left of the structures from back in the day. The brig is still standing. The place was in existence for 30 months and it cranked out 293,000 sailors. About 900 German POWs worked as garden and landscape maintainers.

    They broke ground on this place in March 1942 and by September the place had a population of 55,000 making it the largest city in Idaho. There were six self contained training units that held 5,000 sailors each.
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    After the war, this structure was moved to Colorado as a field house for their university.
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    Donnie Samuelson was stationed here as a weapons instructor. He was originally from the Midwest but after the war he stayed in Sandpoint and eventually was elected Governor.
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    About 260 miles today with a moving average of 31.6.
  15. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    Thanks for the shot of the center of the universe! Murray was on the list but I had to scratch it for this trip.

    You guys crack me up with your antics! :lol3

    Thanks for following along! Glad you are enthusiastic about the report.

    Thanks! Glad you are enjoying it.

    Thanks for joining in!


    Sorry about the delay between posts. I have the opportunity to ride my 500 EXC in the north woods at the Central Rally so I have been doing that instead of ride reporting.
    DruiD likes this.
  16. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    Farragut to the Canadian Border

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    A ride down to the lake in Farragut State Park.
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    There was a fire on this mountain the evening before.
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    Pesky deer.
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    Heading north toward Sandpoint.
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    Back across the two mile long bridge.
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    The old bridge is a nice pedestrian and bicycling path.
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    Part of Sandpoint.
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    Bonner's Ferry
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    Kootenai River
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    The Roman Nose stuff goes up into those mountains. We skipped it to save the time. Probably wasn't going to be any more impressive than the fantastic contour roads we ran already.
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    There is an auto tour in the wildlife refuge here.
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    Turkeys.
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    Border Patrol at Copeland Ferry.
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    Never did figure this ag set-up out.
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    Gas Porthill.
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    Border station.
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    End of the BDR but not the end of the day or the end of the trip. More to come. :D
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    10Cup likes this.
  17. Critic

    Critic More or less!

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    West of the Illinois, heart of the state!
    "Never did figure this ag set-up out."

    Grapes? I know, i've seen that before.
  18. cplus

    cplus Been here awhile

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    Amazing ride report as usual Cannonshot. Well thought out route and great photos, but the weath of local and historical info is outstanding. Thank you.
  19. Hootowl

    Hootowl Long timer

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    Hops
  20. JeepDawg

    JeepDawg Long timer

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    Famous Potatoes
    Yep hops. They grow alot of them in SW Idaho also.