Friday, September 21, 2012

Geezer V, Driggs, Idaho - Day 3

We were all up early so we could get a good start on our trip to Mesa Falls.  Mesa Falls is a spectacular set of waterfalls on the Henry's Fork of the Snake River.  They consist of an upper and lower falls with the upper falls being 114 feet high and 200 feet wide and the lower falls slightly smaller at 85 feet high.  The lower falls is not easily accessible, but the upper falls has trails and viewing platforms making it an easy walk for anyone.  Mesa Falls is on highway 47 which is called the Mesa Falls Scenic Byway.  The south end of the byway starts in Ashton, Idaho and ends 29 miles later just south of Island Park, Idaho.  It was a beautiful drive through rolling farm lands and forest at the higher elevation.

We were on our way by nine o'clock and reached Ashton less than an hour later.  We decided to start at the northern end of the byway so we drove on up highway 20 where we stopped in Island Park and bought sandwiches, drinks and snacks for lunch.  Backtracking south a few miles we started our drive on the scenic byway.  Our first stop was an unnamed, unmarked pond we had read about in an off-road guide book.  The pond was in a nice spot and was worth the detour.

Hiking down to the pond.
John and Greg.

Trumpeter Swans across the pond.

Back to the cars.
From there it was down the road to visit the falls, but first it was lunchtime.

Our lunchtime entertainment.

The top of Mesa Falls
Mesa Falls

The turbulence at the bottom of the falls.
While we were there, a school bus full of kids pulled up for an outing and they swarmed the area.  They were well behaved, but they caused me a few problems with my photographic endeavors.  They didn't stay long so it was just a brief encounter.

Looking down river from the Upper Falls.
There is no access to the lower falls, so we drove a little further down the road to the scenic overlook of the Lower Mesa Falls.

Lower Mesa Falls
Another group picture at the Lower Mesa Falls overlook.
It was getting late in the afternoon, so it was time to head for home.  This was John and Greg's last evening as Greg had to get back to his business by Friday.

Jack, John, Greg and Val on the deck. 
For the last meal of our full group, Steph prepared a delicious dinner of Chicken Parmesan which everyone fully enjoyed.  Later, we all convened in the hot tub for some final talk and relaxing.  We were all sorry to see John and Greg go as it won't be the same without them, but real life calls and the bills have to be paid.  See you next year John and Greg.

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