2020 Visiting Salmon - Mountain Buzz

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Old 1 Week Ago   #1
codycleve's Avatar
salmon, Idaho
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 1,211
2020 Visiting Salmon

I try and do this thread every year trying to help out a fellow rafter. I'm sure I have some missed some things and feel free to ask.. Some places are allowing dine in, or just patio seating and almost everyone is taking curb side cervices at this time.. If you read this last year and dont want to read through this, here are the main changes.

Bertrams Brewery closed its doors for good early in the Covid Closure.

There is a new grocery store opening in the old mcphersons building by the bear. it is set to open the weekend before memorial day unless things have changed with you know. I am not certain what they will have but it's supposed to be a local market. OPEN SUNDAYS

Baker shack is a new pretty good drive up breakfast and lunch spot.. mainly wraps and bowls.

OK now the main post if you read this last year a lot of it is the same.

Visiting salmon Idaho

Your main option is going to be Saveway market, open 6:30 until 10pm in the summer but closed on Sunday. They have the best block ice in town and they do have dry ice. For some reason last year their solid block ice dried up around July and never returned, I hope that doesn’t repeat itself.

If you are coming into salmon on 28 there is the amish country store that is pretty good “closed Thursdays and Sundays”. They also have really good sandwiches and anything pickled you could imagine.

In a pinch you can get some groceries at service grocery “kind of scary”, the corner store, and discounts unlimited. Every year I run into some poor group that is looking to try and buy last minute veggies on a Sunday. It can be tough here in Salmon.

Family dollar has some basics

The bakery here is really good, I cannot recommend their 80 mile bread enough. The good stuff does go pretty fast so be early or call ahead. They also have really good pastries.

There is a farmers market on Saturday mornings next to the bear by the river until noon during the summer.

New this year there is another option for groceries. I can not remember the name right bow but it is going in the old McPhersons building by the bear. They said that they will be open on Sundays and from what I have heard they are geared up to open the weekend before Memorial Day. It will be a lot of locally sourced produce and what not I will post more on this once they open and I can check it out. Not sure if Covid delayed the planned opening or not but they have a new sign on the front of the building


Murdoch’s is my new go to for propane fills. They will fill your composite tanks without any troubles. Other options for propane fills are the Phillips 66 at the light or buddys. These two are hit and miss as they don’t always have an extra person to run the till while someone fills the tank. the village at north fork does fills also.

Fishing license

If you want to get a last minute fishing license you can go to fish and game, hwy 93 sports, corner store “open until 11pm I think”, or the village at north fork.

Invasive species sticker

93 sporting goods, Idaho adventures, and the village at northfork, and salmon river fly box. There was a change this year and they have had a hard time getting them.. So maybe get one before you come i will let you know when this is resolved.

As stated above best ice is Saveway, also carry dry ice.

There is a liquor store in salmon just off Main Street near the grocery store. Also The village at north fork does carry some liquor.

Canned Beer
The grocery store has a pretty good selection. The corner store has a good variety as well along with some canned cocktails like bloody mary’s, G&T’s and what not. The village at north fork has really upped their game and has maybe the best variety.

The most popular seems to be the Stagecoach Inn by a long shot. Next I would say the super 8 then maybe the bear country in. These are all close to down town and the river. There are some less traditional routes that you can take. The syringe lodge is very popular and books up pretty fast. I have very little personal experience with most of these places as I live here

Bertrams Closed their doors for good early in the Covid closure

River city baking makes great to go breakfast burritos , they are across the street from buddys gas station. You may call ahead if you have a large order. They also make to go lunches with really good sandwiches.

The pork peddler does a brunch that starts at 9am and is pretty popular with outdoor seating.

There is a food truck called mad flatters that is open a couple days a week they have really good breakfast burritos made with African flatbread. They are parked in front of mountain west realty on main street or in the parking lot of the stagecoach.

There is a new Drive up breakfast and lunch wrap shack called the Baker shack it’s right across from family dollar headed out 28 towards Idaho falls.. Pro tip, on your breakfast burrito substitute country gravy for their cheese sauce.


We have 2 coffee places in town, paradise brews and rise and shine. I don’t get coffee a lot but I usually hit up Rise and Shine. They also have to go breakfast burritos.

Lunch and dinner
My personal favorite place to eat in town is the junkyard bistro. The bistro is open until 11pm and has outdoor seating.

Again Bertrams closed their doors for good.

The pork peddler is nice little BBQ place that has a lot of outdoor seating. As far as a place that has that river community feel to it, this is it. They also have one of the better beer selections in town and trivia on Wednesday night. Currently they are doing outdoor seating only. This place has really grown on me, don’t expect to get a order of nachos and a burrito and eat both. great wings and pork nachos

Salmon has a couple of good pizza places. We go to last chance or Dave’s pizza. I would say last chance has better topping but can be a little bit greasier. There is a wood fired pizza truck called ponderosa pies that is open a couple days a week. It parks in the old mcphersons parking lot on main street.

If you want a burger and fries and shake or other quick diner/ grill food I highly recommend the savage grill.

Some people like the shady nook I have not eaten there for a while.

Mad flatters is African flatbread burrito food truck I’m not sure on their schedule this year they have a facebook

Fast Food

Burger king, subway, and taco grande are your three options here.

Food once you leave salmon

the village at north fork no longer has hot food. They still have ice cream, also the rams head way down river is now open and have a great burger and milkshake closed Monday and tueday..

Last minute rafting gear
Surprisingly you are somewhat limited here. The Salmon River fly box does carry some dry bags cam straps and smaller accessories. They are also a wealth of knowledge for fishing in the area. Murdochs, ace hardware and hwy 93 sports have a few life jackets and dry bags. It has been a while since I have been in Blackadar boating but they did have a few bigger raft accessories last time I was in there.

If you need some river clothing I would look at Arfmanns 4 seasons and The village at north fork. The village at north fork also has some footwear and random river gear.

You can rent or buy some gear from Idaho adventures that is just across the bridge by the stagecoach. I have not been in there for a while and guy who used to run it took over the middle fork lodge.
Other stuff to do

If you have a few extra days in town we have a great day stretch down river. Put in at spring creek take out at cove creek. You can really float wherever you want, there are 30 boat ramps between challis and corn creek. We have some great mountain biking in the area and you can rent a bike from the HUB. Their website has a link to the trails in the area. There are several high mountain lakes, hot springs, hiking, and camping opportunities. The BLM closed sharkey, and gold bug hotspring and I am uncertain of their reopening.

codycleve is offline   Reply With Quote
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Old 1 Week Ago   #2
Portland, Oregon
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 29
I really appreciate the effort you put into these updates, thanks so much! On a related note, being a local, what is your gauge on how folks are feeling there about out-of-towners? Are people wearing mask around town, etc? I'm not planning a trip until August, but was curious regardless.

Thanks again,
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Old 1 Week Ago   #3
Jenks, Oklahoma
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,847

you posting this information is very much appreciated.
Thank you for doing this.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #4
Salt Lake City, Utah
Paddling Since: 95
Join Date: Feb 2019
Posts: 10
Thanks! Great info!
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Old 1 Week Ago   #5
MT4Runner's Avatar
Kalispell, Montana
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 3,049
I saw the Pork Peddler got good Yelp reviews. Looking forward to trying it.

The Junkyard and Oddfellows Bakery are always my must-stops.

And the Wags & Bags animal shelter thrift shop sometimes has some killer deals. My wifey found me a Pendleton shirt for $5, and I found some Eddie Bauer shoes in size 14!

Arfmann's has good pricing and selection on western wear/outdoor clothing if you need a rain coat or some great woolens.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #6
Eagle, Idaho
Join Date: Apr 2017
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Old 1 Week Ago   #7
Eugene, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1977
Join Date: Mar 2009
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Thanks Cody. Your effort is appreciated. The information was helpful last year and will be again this year. Hopefully things will open up by August.
I'm not happy about being over the hill, but I am grateful there wasn't a cliff at the summit! - Frank and Ernest
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Old 1 Week Ago   #8
Bleugrass's Avatar
Jamestown, Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2018
Posts: 21
Good stuff

This was great information. Thanks for posting it! We'd been considering a preseason Main Salmon run if it were safe and prudent, but I think we're going to let things cool off a little more and hope for a July or early August cancellation to pop up.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #9
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Join Date: Mar 2018
Posts: 183
" Pro tip, on your breakfast burrito substitute country gravy for their cheese sauce." whaaaaaaat? Green Chili sauce goes on burritos. My god this is going to be a rough trip, may just have to bag the entire thing.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #10
codycleve's Avatar
salmon, Idaho
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 1,211
Originally Posted by DidNotWinLottery View Post
" Pro tip, on your breakfast burrito substitute country gravy for their cheese sauce." whaaaaaaat? Green Chili sauce goes on burritos. My god this is going to be a rough trip, may just have to bag the entire thing.

I spent a month fighting fire in Reserve new mexico and I would kill for a burrito with green sauce. Loved the food down there.. You just don't see the new mexico green and red sauce anywhere up here.. If someone knows of some let me know.. We have to deal with the hand we are delt.
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