Thursday, April 25, 2013

Jet Boat Races Coming to St. Maries

The St Joe River is getting more and more well known, not just for the fantastic fishing, amazing scenery or that it is the highest navigatible river in the world, but because of the World Class Jet Boat Racing.  Here is a recent article that I wish to share with you regarding this upcoming event. 

The event last year was fantastic, we hosted some wonderful people and I am very proud to say that the winner of the entire race which took place on 3 differant rivers over a period of 10 days stayed with us...Ryan Rogers and his fantastic family were so enjoyable and we loved every minute of their stay.  We also learned alot about racing.  Wow, is it ever in their blood!

Last year, the St. Joe River provided the first leg of the 2012 World Cup Jet Boat Races. The event was deemed an astounding success; racers and fans enjoyed the event enough to encourage organizers to bring back the boats. And here they come!
Make plans now to attend the 1st Annual Race the Joe! in St. Maries May 17-19, 2013.
The race events begin Friday, May 17 with the Community Show & Shine. It's a free event beside the Cormana Building in the lower City Park. Spectators and race fans will be able to view the race boats close up and talk with race teams starting at 6 p.m.. As with  last year's World Jet Boat Races on the St. Joe River, there will be a fantastic fireworks display after the sun sets.
Friday night's fun will be followed by two days of racing on the St. Joe River from the Idaho Forest Industries Landing, located just a mile from St. Maries on The St. Joe River Road, to the Calder Bridge and back with several race legs along the approximate 25-mile course each day. Spectators may watch the action for free along any riverbank with public access. Both sides of the river will give spectators fantastic views up and down the river as the boats come screaming through the rapids at speeds reaching 140 MPH.
Racing begins at 10 a.m. both days and continues through the late afternoon.
Don't miss it!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Take the Time to Count Your Blessings

As I was taking JayJay for his daily walk today I was simply amazed at all the beauty that is just outside my door.  Each day he gets downright abnoxious and literally "in my face" until I put on the walking gear...consisting of an old lavender coat, hat with scarf, mittens and 3 dog treats in my pockets.  He gets excited about the simple things in life, like going for his daily 3 mile walk, getting to ride in the car with Cary to town or the dump, and waiting for the treat lady to show up with doggie treats for every dog along Shepherd Road.  I would hate to see her Costco bill each month just with the amount of dog treats but every dog loves her.
Anyways, our walk was quite brisk this morning as we clipped along with the weather being a balmy 24 degrees.  No lingering or you may freeze in the spot.  JayJay's whiskers were frozen.  However, the fields were magnificent with the ice twinkling, the snow made everything look so peaceful and the blue sky made the snow covered mountains look like something out of a fairytale. 
I hate to say it but I did not have my camera with me and did not capture this beautiful scene, (these were taken a few weeks ago)  but I spent alot of time just appreciating each and every thing that nature was offering as I strolled along.  Sometimes we do not take the time to appreciate or thank God for all the blessings He so abundantly gives us on a day to day basis.  But today I thanked Him for allowing us to live in an area that has many times been referred to a "little slice of heaven".  However, with that thought I was caught off guard that I never think of winter in heaven.  I guess because I love sunshine, hot days and palm trees....along the ocean, I have been thinking that heaven is going to be more like that.  Who knows, maybe the ski bums will live in an area with lots of mountains and snow, while I spend eternity on the beach under a palm tree.  It was kind of fun to think about anyway.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

If Winter is Here, Spring Cannot Be Far Behind

Oh my, we are stuck in the dead of winter, it snowed yesterday about 5 inches and the Winter Blues seem to be desperately trying to seep in.  However, I have spent a little time today on my computer, came across some pictures and my heart is rejuvenated!  I ran across some amazing pictures taken last year and they reminded me of why I absolutely LOVE living in this area.  (This time of year I really need to be reminded of that as visions of palm trees and "life" during the winter months invade my mind).

I desperately miss the longer days when you can take a quick 20 minute drive into the mountains and just be surrounded by beauty.  Out of my 4 adult children, one is always ready to head to the mountains with Mom and spend the day just appreciating God's gift to us----nature! 

My husband and I are considered "new-comers" to the St. Maries area.  We have actually only lived on the river for 9 years.  We were city folk from the Spokane area for 27 years and then decided that the hustle bustle of the city was getting us down and we retreated to the river.  I will be honest, it has been quite a change, somewhat of a culture shock but it has been worth it.  Where else can you be enjoying a morning cup of coffee and watch a moose cross the river just feet away from you?  Where else can you gaze at over 40 deer who have not a care in the world, yet hunting season is at its peak?  This truly is God's gift to us and we must take care of our gift. 

Getting back to the whole reason I felt compelled to even start writing in my blog,-- which I am grossly overdue-- are some pictures I came across just a few minutes ago that brought back some wonderful "younger year" memories.

 While my son and I were tromping around the area known locally as Cherry Creek, we took some pictures of what use to be my Dad's farm land.  In the 70's and 80's my Mom and Dad were living along the St. Joe River farming a very fertile area that was edged on one side by 3 miles of dike along the river.  It was flat, beautiful and a wonderful place to escape the city life on weekends, which is exactly what I did.  My Dad was a very successful farmer who chose to raise grass seed, Timothy and Blue Grass that he then sold to the Asian market for golf courses.  After almost 20 years of living off the land along the river and loving every minute of it, his health would not allow him to continue what he loved.  God is good and knows what people can handle, and what would be just too much for them.  My father lest this temorary home and went to his true home one December day, just months before a chinook, early thaw hit the St. Joe area.  With so much water rushing down, it was too much for the river to contain and unfortunately there was a break in the dike.  What we looked at as horrible, actually turned into a beautiful lake that many people now enjoy viewing.  My Dad would be so proud of the "water view" property that his livelihood has become and on that day trekking up in the mountains with my son, I was able to capture on film the river running along the dike and old farm.   It brought back some very good memories and I am so pleased that so many people can enjoy the beauty of this water and have "water-view" properties.  Just a little history.........

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

When Everything Turns White

Have you ever noticed that when snow covers the ground it actually acts like a sound barrier also?  I absolutely love taking walks when the snow has turned everything white, because there is a still, calm that is so relaxing, refreshing and yet energizing at the same time.  The snow seems to create an insulation against noises and while walking in the still of the snow it allows you to "hear" other sounds you would normally not be able to hear.  Or maybe it is that while the white snow acts to clean the canvas of the normal landscape, it allows our thoughts to enter into places  that are normally running rampant and never stop long enough to really listen or appreciate what is all around us. 

I have taken on a new appreciation of just how beautiful our mountains, trees, and the river become when they are clothed in snow.  This past week we went from no snow to having 16 inches within 3 days and what a magical winter wonderland it became.  Of course I can sit back and appreciate all this beauty when warm and snug in my home with the fireplace ablaze and the car does not need to edge out of the garage the entire time.  I can appreciate why children get so excited about snow days, they don't need to worry about cars sliding along the highway.  Sometimes I think we need to have a more child-like perspective on life and just appreciate all the beauty that seems to come our way. 

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The Scenic St. Joe River Road in the Fall

Fall is definitely here and the colors of the leaves are brilliant.  We took a drive up the St. Joe River and arrived in St. Regis, Montana about 3 hours later.  The ground cover of reds is evidence of the profusion of huckleberry plants.  The river is beautiful any time of year but when yellows, oranges, reds and greens jump into view there is just nothing prettier.

As you leave St. Maries, the St. Joe River is quite wide, however it gets more narrow the further you go.  There are twists and turns in the road that open up yet another beautiful display of color.  Because of the clarity of the water, you can see all the river rock and the waves splash playfully as the water hits into a large rocks sticking up out of the water. 

There are quite a few campgrounds along the way, some well known like Huckleberry and Tin Can Flats.  They vary in size and I tend to like the smaller ones with only 6 to eight camp sights.  The town of Avery always offers some interesting sites and it is easy to imagine the activity that use to happen in it's "heyday".  Just outside of Avery you can either turn left and head over Moon Pass driving through tunnels on a dirt road and eventually end up in Wallace,ID or continue on the St. Joe River Road heading to Red Ives and the Montana border.  We chose to keep to the right and head to Montana.

St. Regis in itself is an interesting little town with resturants, antique stores and gift shops to spend a few hours (and a few bucks) before heading west on Interstate 90 back home.  Although it is not as scenic, it does cut off about an hour of drive time and winds along the southeast end of Couer d'Alene Lake.

All in all, it was a delightful day with the blue sky, crisp fall air and a day spent appreciating the beauty that North Idaho has to offer.  I would love to say the next pictures will be in the winter with those same trees and water snuggled in a blanket of white snow but the road conditions might keep that from happening.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Morel Mushrooms....maybe better than Huckleberries

We have had an extremely WET spring but there are always good things that come out of adversity if you take the right attitude.  The excessive moisture has brought an abundance of mushrooms in the area hillsides.  I have never been mushroom picking, although my Dad and brother were always going out and spotting those yummy morsels.  A new young friend showed up with 8 and 1/2 pounds of morel mushrooms and my taste buds were salivating like mad when I saw them. 

After questioning him for every bit of information we could get, we THOUGHT we knew just exactly where to go to find these wonderful delicacies.  My son who is an avid huckleberry picker, to the point that we have nicknamed him the "Huckleberry Hounddog" arrived from Seattle and he and I set out to stake our claim.

Heading up Shay Hill, I now know why the Subaru Forrester has won the hearts of many who dare to go where others cannot or wouldn't even venture to go.  It was like a little tank crossing all those washed out ravines.  I was really impressed and it got us to the top of the mountain. 

I hate to admit it but we kind of got "skunked" when it comes to the volume of mushrooms picked but we really hit the jackpot when it comes to scenery.  The views atop the hill were outstanding, could even see for about 30 miles of the Coeur d'Alene Lake.  The spring flowers were abundant, fresh air never been fresher and it was just great to get out into the beauty area. 

Although we did not come back with many morels, we arrived home with a whole new appreciation of mushrooms as we had spotted over 8 other varieties and had no idea of they would be delicious or death!  Thus, onto the computer to study mushrooms, found a book at my Mom's house about the differant varieties and best yet, found out that there is a Mushroom organization in Spokane, WA that offers monthly meetings and field trips.  Guess where we will be going in the fall? ? ?  Life is just one big learning experience after another.

Natural Beauty- Obnoxious Weeds-or Land of OZ -- You Decide

Each season brings new beauty to the area but I think that spring is by far the prettiest in this area.  We have a huge field right across the road from our home and it brings so much joy each time I look out a window or walk out the door.  Many times the view is of 20 to 50 deer grazing in the fields, or a fresh blanket of white snow, but in the spring we are fortunate enough to get "wild lupin".  I absolutely love gazing at all the purple and lavender flowers and am amazed to hear complaints about how we need to get rid of these obnoxious weeds.  Obnoxious weeds, I think they are a sight for sore eyes after the long winter! 

Even better yet is to take the dogs and grandkids for a walk in these magnificent fields.  The dogs enjoy running through the stuff while the kids enjoy picking to their hearts content.

If I were to try to grow these in my yard they would most likely not do a thing, yet left alone for Mother Nature to tend to them....they flourish.  I always feel like "Dorothy" heading to the city of OZ.  JayJay may not look like Toto, nor I like Dorothy but it is still magical.