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Old 07-08-2011   #1
willieWAO's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 154
Dont know where to go in Idaho!!!!!

If you were me, and you had a playboat, a creek boat, no schedule, no destination and you were currently in Idaho Falls, what would be your plan of attack?

Im headed west (eventually.) Should I go up towards Salmon, ID. and maybe north towards Missoula? Should I go straight to Boise?
Way north to coeur d'Alene, Sand point area? Get a job at NRS? Moscow?
What stuff should i avoid?

Whats the best route for the best whitewater sampler?

Im kinda at a loss, any recommendations would be greatly appreciated.

P.S. Im a very experienced oarsmen and paddle captain, can cook, can party, so if anyone needs to fill a permit, i can "Safety" kayak, row, or whatever.

Thanks buzzards!

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Old 07-08-2011   #2
Boise, Idaho
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 505
Do you mean to live and work or just for a short trip?

Boise is about as good of a staging area as anywhere... actually, Cascade or Banks are a bit better, but tougher to find housing and employment.

Within two hours you have a playpark (soon to have two), a world famous class V run, as many class IV runs as you can handle, and a smattering of creeks and class III runs as well.

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Old 07-08-2011   #3
pocatello, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1991
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 471
Yup. head to banks by boise. you could go via stanley and stop at the yankee fork and sunbeam stretch on the way. There is a month's worth of boating to do on the payette system.

My real plan of attack would be to beg my way onto a multiday trip on the MFS, main or selway.

Ultimate plan: MF main combo ending in riggins, then hit payette. dreamy.
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Old 07-08-2011   #4
Pugetopolis, Washington
Paddling Since: 96
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 767
SF of the Payette? Lots of quality camping
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Old 07-09-2011   #5
Dipshit with the most.
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Bellevue, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1991
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 2,496
Where not to go?

Sure you can start in Salmon and you could ark either way. Go boat the Pine Creek daily for a taste of some big water class 3 then Stanley for a swirl through Shotgun and the Dam the Yankee Fork then to Marsh Creek, Bear Valley or over the hill to the Payette's. The Deadwood isn't running but the Grandjean, Canyon, Swirly and Staircase all should be seen by every paddler at least once or often.

NF Payette up to the Cabarton, to the Little Salmon to Riggins......hummm....or head up to Yellowpine and boat the roadside gnar or jump on the South Salmon or ......(insert random Bruneau sidetrip because it's still running 1,200 which is plenty and easy enough to do in two days in a kayak) over to the Clearwater side for a ton more pick your level or gnar desired from the creeks to the Lochsa. Hundreds of miles of premium unleaded coming into perfect surfing levels whitewater await you. Oh and we didn't even mention the Boise's which are mostly class 3 to 3+ beauties further south and parts of the Snake - sorry it seems the Murtaugh is done - or the creeks of the SE which I don't know much about.

Does that whet your whistle?

Did I mention that everything is at perfect or near perfect or will be perfect soon levels? Not the super high scary shit, but good flows, well formed waves, great hole rides and.......well why are you still reading this? Git.
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Old 07-10-2011   #6
Fruita, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 7
Bruneau River.
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Old 07-10-2011   #7
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North Fork, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1980
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 46
I went to Pine Creek (near Salmon) Saturday and it is as good as it gets. Lots of big waves for 10 miles.....Panther Creek is still runable in play boats, but I wouldn't put a raft in.

Agree with all comments. Where can't you go and have an endless summer of playwater in Idaho this year!
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Old 07-10-2011   #8
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at my house, Montana
Paddling Since: 2020
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 4,345
The Lochsa is still running great, which is ridiculous for this time of year. If you've not made it, come check it out. If you are a Class V- boater, you might enjoy the Mickey Mouse section of the SF Clearwater, and if you are a solid V Golden Canyon is "in" right now too. There is also the NF Clearwater, and St. Joe, all still running.
I am a river, babe - I've got plenty of time, I don't know where I'm going, I'm just following the lines..... - "We are water" by Shaye
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Old 07-10-2011   #9
willieWAO's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 154
ok ok. Thanks for all the input everyone!!!! Im in Stanley now, and i have three directions calling my name. My plan was to go thru Salmon, on to Missoula, than along the lochsa, up to moscow, courd'lene, area, and back south to Boise. Would the bruneau still be running in a week or too? Im kinda waiting to see if i can get on someones permit while here. Its because i went thru Arco, craters of moon, sun valley direction first. I kinda started diriving, instead of waiting for your responses.....

So, should i go back south to Bruneau/ Jarbridge? West to the Payettes? or north to my original plan? whats a rough estimate of how long those levels will hold on Lochsa, grandjean, canyon, swirly, bruneau?

Again, all help is GREATLY appreciated!
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Old 07-10-2011   #10
Pugetopolis, Washington
Paddling Since: 96
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 767
I know Grandjeans at a great level now. And you're only,like,50mins away from it. Canyon run might be a little juicy. There's good stuff below the Canyon run too. But the hot springs,color of the water,solitude,free easy access car camping(next to Grandjean run) etc all make it worthwhile to at least do an overnighter if you've never been up in that area. Its really purdy....idaho is badass.

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