BERT goes rafting… 80 miles on “The River of No Return”

The Main Salmon, otherwise known as “The River of No Return,” is home to bear, bighorn sheep and beavers, mountain goats, marmot and moose… and from October 1 through October 7, guides, managers and friends of Barker-Ewing River Trips! The Main Salmon runs through the heart of the 3.2 million acre Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness Area, and the 80-mile float through this wilderness section begins 2.5 hours north of Salmon, Idaho at the road’s end.

A mere 104 years ago, Lewis & Clark’s expedition to find an easy water route to the Pacific Ocean, at the request of President Thomas Jefferson, led them to this Salmon River country but found the river too difficult to navigate. Read more about their expedition at http://idahoptv.org/OUTDOORS/shows/riverofnoreturn/lc.cfm

Where the road ended… our 6-day float began! 5 boats, 12 friends, 1 perfect river dog and more gear than I believed could fit on the rafts. The Salmon is a classic big water, western river. Even in our late season float, there were plenty of wave trains, holes to avoid, rock walls to skirt and rapids to soak us. Perfect weather, delicious meals (thank you, Lindsay Long for a great menu and the huge grocery shop!), token “costume night,” natural hot springs, pristine white, sandy beaches, sleeping under the stars, lots of Vitamin D, fun group dynamic and the great outdoors! This was my first multi day river trip… but definately not my last.

The only thing that would have made our trip better… no snowfall welcoming us home. It’s only October!

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