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Old 11-28-2010, 11:56 AM   #1
chuckh OP
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Joined: Feb 2003
Location: Spokane, WA
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Adventures in the Selkirks

"The Selkirk Mountains are a mountain range spanning the Northern portion of the Idaho Panhandle, eastern Washington, and Southeastern British Columbia. They begin at Mica Peak near Liberty Lake, WA and extend approximately 200 miles North from the border between the US and Canada. The range is bounded on its West, Northeast and at its northern extremity by the Columbia River. From the Columbia's confluence with the Beaver River, they are bounded on their east by the Purcell Trench, which contains the Beaver River, Duncan River, Duncan Lake, Kootenay Lake and the Kootenay River. The Selkirks are distinct from, and geologically older than, the Rocky Mountains. Together with the neighboring Monashee and Purcell Mountains, and sometimes including the Cariboo Mountains to the northwest, the Selkirks are part of a larger grouping known as the Columbia Mountains."

With the following collection of posts I hope to share a wonderfully diverse geographic area that I am fortunate to enjoy with my passion and my friends. I live near Mica Peak in the NorthEast corner of Washington state which is considered the Southern most point of the Selkirk mountain range. With the following and ongoing collection of posts I hope to share the beauty and diversity of the area in which I live. Where I call home is within 2 days riding to Alaska and 2 days to Mexico, okay, I know some could ride to either in a day.

If I'm not making turns on a motorcycle, then I do so on road and mountain bikes. If not on two wheels then I'm making turns on skis. I've lived in this area since 1976 and enjoy the many outdoor activities in and around the Selkirks and the many lakes and watersheds in our area. I enjoy a variety of activities that this area allows us to enjoy: rock, ice and alpine climbing, skiing, biking, fly fishing, rafting and motorcycling.

My first riding experience riding a motorcycle was on My Uncle Ervin's farm in McMinnville, OR on a Honda CT70 when I was 8 years old. It was a hoot riding around his farm and I recall having races with my cousins with their little gasoline powered "race car".

I purchased my first street bike in 1978 when I bought a Kawasaki KZ650. It was the base model but with the blue "SR" body work as the shop mechanic liked the black body work better and switched it.

It looked like this but with spoked wheels:


I've owned a number of dirt and street bikes over the years since then and my primary bike to ride these days is a 2007 Yamaha FJR 1300.

Anyway, so much about me, on with the ride reports...
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Old 11-28-2010, 12:04 PM   #2
chuckh OP
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Mica Peak to Nelson, BC

Nelson, BC

Although the city we know today as “Nelson” did not exist until the late 1880s, the history of man in this area dates back to when the great pyramids were being constructed in Egypt. The latest archeological carbon dating provides evidence that a race of men and women lived, hunted and fished along the shores of Kootenay Lake two thousand years before the time of the advanced cultures of the Aztecs and the Incas of Central and South America. These earliest inhabitants of the area were later to be called the Kootenay Indians, and their names were adopted to designate the land that they roamed. Kootenay is an Indian word meaning "water people". In the original spelling "Co" means water and "Tinneh" means people. An abundance of fish in the lakes and rivers, as well as berries, fruits, bulbs, roots, nuts, seeds, and grains provided the Indians with a varied and adequate diet. Animals such as deer, moose, elk, bear and numerous smaller fur-bearing creatures supplied meat for food, hides for clothing and bones for tools. These early citizens lived in airy, tule mat-covered teepees during the summer months, while spending the cooler months and winter in cozy, subterranean dwellings with a timber superstructure, covers with branches and topped with sods and soil. A square hole at the apex of the house allowed smoke from cooking fires to escape and also provided the only means of entry - a notched log set up like a ladder. A large flat stone was used as a kind of shield to keep the fire from burning the ladder.

I asked my good friend Marc Lewis who hosts the micapeak.com website if he was interested in a Fall Foliage ride up to Nelson, BC. Without hesitation, Marc said yes and we booked hotel reservations and made plans to ride to Nelson at the end of September.



We’ve done this ride before and have taken various routes up and back from our homes near Mica Peak, WA. This trip we planned to ride from the Spokane Valley to Chatteroy, WA on Hwy 2 that turns into 211 and then 20 on the way through Usk to Ione, WA.

Marc on his BMW F800GS at a foggy morning stop along Sacheen lake on Hwy 211.



Yours truly with Marc’s bike and Sacheen lake misting into focus in the background.



We took a nice diversion to beautiful and mirror smooth Sullivan Lake.



Which makes for nice reflection photos.



This was not a ride where we were focused on high-mileage days, but rather took time to stop, take photos and smell the roses. In this case it was a stop for a delicious Huckleberry tort, cappuccino and Kicking Horse coffee in Salmo, BC.



Once we arrived in Nelson we checked into our hotel, dropped off our overnight luggage and loaded up our camera gear for lunch and then a ride along the North shore of beautiful Kootenay lake to the lovely Ainsworth Hot Springs.

We stopped a nice café and had lunch with this lovely lady.



Purdy bikes framed by our restaurant window.



Nicely restored Norton 750 Commando.



Something a little more current a 2010 BMW S1000RR.



We rode our bikes across the bridge and headed East toward Ainsworth Hot Springs along the North Shore of Kootenay lake. This lovely stream flowed into the lake.



Looks like great habitat for moss to grow in.



Motorcyclist taking photo of motorcyclist taking photo of motorcyclists...



Marc below Ainsworth Hotsprings at a spring that typically goes unnoticed along the highway that runs the North shore of Kootenay Lake, BC.



Tripods make repetition easy.



We rode back and had a very nice dinner at the international café (sorry, low light and no pictures to share).

The next day we donned our leathers, Aerostich and rain gear to load up our bikes and prepared to ride to Balfour to ride the Osprey ferry across Kootenay Lake to Kootenay Bay which connects to one of the finest roads in BC, Hwy 3-A.



Misty ride on the Osprey heading East.



Finally the Fall colors we were looking for as we headed South on Hwy 3-A.



A modern interpretation of Michelangelo’s creation scene found on the ceiling of the Sistina Chapel and the Vatican museum that we enjoyed at a lovely little cafe South of the Kootenay Bay landing.



We stopped in a delightful cafe and enjoyed their cappuccino, ginger/apple tort and artwork. Just to let the cars and slower (ahem) motorcyclists to clear Hwy 3-A so we could ride “the pace”.



We stopped for fuel in Creston, BC and then took the gorgeous Crowsnest Hwy (Hwy3) West back to Salmo.

As we reentered the US, the customs officials were completing a very thorough search of each vehicle. Even opening luggage in the back of cars and SUV’s. We answered a few questions and opened a top bag and side case for the border patrol officer and were waved through.

We stopped in Metaline Falls, WA for a few more Fall Foliage pictures.







Once we returned to Ione, we headed East across the bridge and then South along the mighty Pend O’reille River along Le Clerc Road.

Then we took a number of smaller roads South of Newport and arrived back in the Spokane Valley in sunshine and miles with smiles.
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Old 11-28-2010, 12:05 PM   #3
Schtum
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chuckh
"The Selkirk Mountains are a mountain range spanning the Northern portion of the Idaho Panhandle, eastern Washington, and Southeastern British Columbia.
I'd never heard of them. Amazing where we Scots got to back in the day.

This is Selkirk..... http://www.selkirkonline.org/
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Old 11-28-2010, 12:11 PM   #4
chuckh OP
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Location: Spokane, WA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Schtum
I'd never heard of them. Amazing where we Scots got to back in the day.

This is Selkirk..... http://www.selkirkonline.org/
Thank you for the link to Selkirk, Scotland Schtum!
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Old 11-28-2010, 12:20 PM   #5
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Location: Howe of Fife, Scotland.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chuckh
Thank you for the link to Selkirk, Scotland Schtum!
You're welcome Sir. If you ever want to know any more about Scotland, feel free to ask.
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Old 11-28-2010, 01:43 PM   #6
chuckh OP
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Lolo Pass Assault





This is one of my favorite longer day rides. I head South, from my home in the Spokane Valley, on Hwy 26 through the rolling farmland of the Palouse to Pullman, WA.

Small farming town sentiment expressed on “barn art”.



One of the more interesting points along Hwy 27 is Steptoe Butte.

Steptoe Butte is a quartzite island jutting out of the silty loess of the Palouse hills in Whitman County, Washington. It is contained by Steptoe Butte State Park. The rock that forms the butte is over 400 million years old, in contrast with the 15–7 million year old Columbia River basalts that underlie the rest of the Palouse. Steptoe Butte has become the archetype for its type, and steptoes are defined as isolated protrusions of bedrock, such as summits of hills or mountains, in lava flows.

A hotel built by Cashup Davis stood atop Steptoe butte from 1888 to 1908, burning down several years after it closed. In 1946,Virgil McCroskey donated 120 acres (0.49 km2) of land to form Steptoe Butte State Park, which was later increased to over 150 acres (0.61 km2). Steptoe Butte is currently recognized as a National Natural Landmark because of its unique geological value. It is named in honor of Colonel Edward Steptoe.

A narrow paved road winds around the butte, leading to a parking area at the summit. Popular activities, besides sight-seeing, include hang gliding and flying kites and model airplanes.

Elevation: 3,612 feet (1,101 m), approximately 1,000 feet (300 m) above the surrounding countryside.







My friend Doug Plumley came to visit all the way from Grass Valley California and enjoyed the view from the top of Steptoe Butte.



Cruiser crowd meet the FJR boys.

.

Once you head south to Lewiston you following along the Clearwater river on Hwy 12 East.

A great place to stop is near the 3 Rivers Motel and grab a bite to eat before stopping at this popular sign.





Depending on the time of year (this was in October) the curvaceous and beautiful Hwy 12 can have a fairly remote feel. The natural beauty of the Lochsa river and the serpentine Hwy 12 can feel like a motorbike paradise.



Excellent fly fishing can be had here on the Lochsa River.



Lovely turn on Hwy 12.



Serenity lake before you ascend towards Lolo Pass.



The bee above my helmet was active this late (October) in the year.



Ready to ascend to the top of Lolo Pass.



Lolo Pass visitor center at 5233 feet in elevation.



This is what Lolo Pass looks like today.

http://rwis.mdt.mt.gov/scanweb/lolo.shtml

Once you arrive at the top of Lolo Pass you descend fairly rapidly into the
Lolo Pass Hot Springs.

I camped there in Indian Tee Pees many years ago.
Once you arrive in Missoula, MT I then take the fairly high speed ride on Hwy 90 West toward Lookout pass. Hwy 90 follows along the mighty Clark Fork river which is very popular for drift boat fly fishing.

http://www.watchidaho.net/Lookout-pass.html

You descend Lookout Pass (elevation 4680 ft) into historic Wallace, Idaho and the Silver valley. This area is recognized for it’s a large amount of silver, gold and galena mining. Although the amount of mining today is on a much smaller scale and the area is trying to develop an image of tourism with the Silver Mountain ski area.

I-90 then heads up and over 4th of July pass and down into the beautiful lakeside town of Coeur d’alene, ID.

This “loop ride” ends after 523 miles back in Spokane, Wa.
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Old 11-28-2010, 02:17 PM   #7
chuckh OP
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Two Ferry Ride across Lake Roosevelt

Two Ferry Ride

Grand Coulee Dam is a hydroelectric gravity dam on the Columbia River in the U.S. state of Washington. It is the largest electric power-producing facility[5] and the largest concrete structure in the United States.[6] It is the fifth largest producer of hydroelectricity in the world, as of the year 2008.
The dam was the result of a bitter debate during much of the 1920s between two parties, one of which wanted to irrigate the ancient Grand Coulee Plateau with a gravity canal and the other side who supported a high dam and pumping scheme. In 1933, the dam was selected but for fiscal reasons, its initial design called for it to be over 250 ft (76 m) shorter than it is presently and without a pumping capacity for irrigation. The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and a consortium of three companies called MWAK began construction that same year. After visiting the construction site in August 1934, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt changed his mind and from there on supported the high dam. The high dam was approved by Congress in 1935 and completed in 1942, the first water over-topping its spillway on June 1 of that year.
The dam's power plants fueled an industrious and growing Northwest during World War II. Between 1967 and 1974, the third powerplant was constructed in conjunction with the dam. The decision to construct the additional power plant was influenced by growing energy demand, regulated river flows stipulated in the Columbia River Treaty with Canada and competition with the Soviet Union. Through a series of upgrades and the installation of pump-generators, the dam now supplies four power stations with an installed capacity of 6,809MW. In conjunction with the Columbia Basin Project, the dam's reservoir also supplies water for the irrigation of 671,000 acres (2,720 km2).

The reservoir is called Franklin Delano Roosevelt Lake, (Lake Roosevelt for short) named after the United States President who presided over the authorization and completion of the dam. The dam has also prevented the migration of salmon and other fish upstream to spawn, interrupting their habitat and reproductive cycle. Creation of the reservoir caused the relocation of over 3,000 people, including Native Americans, while also flooding part of their ancestral lands.

I call this ride the Two Ferry Ride since you are able to take free ferries across Lake Roosevelt to connect to highways and roads on either side of the reservoir. Well not free as we pay state and federal taxes to operate them in some form or another.

The Grand Coulee dam is not the only dam near Spokane. Along the Spokane river there is the long lake damn that is located East of Franklin Delano Roosevelt Lake. The Spokane River and Long Lake provide very nice opportunities for moto turns.

This is a photo taken recently just West of Tum Tum, Washington.



Looking North up Lake Roosevelt toward Canada.



Sailing West on the Gifford ferry across Lake Roosevelt toward Inchelium, Washington.



Looking North up Lake Roosevelt while on the Gifford ferry.



Looking back East toward the Eastern shore of Lake Roosevelt.



Ferry safety in multiple forms.



I wonder how many “Twin Lakes” there are? This is the beautiful North shore of upper Twin Lake just West of Inchelium. This area is part of the Colville Indian reservation in Washington state.



The Colville Indian Reservation is an Indian reservation in the north-central part of the U.S. state of Washington, inhabited and managed by Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, which is recognized by the United States of America as an American Indian Tribe. The reservation is located in the southeastern section of Okanogan County and the southern half of Ferry County, but there are pieces of trust land out Eastern Washington, including lands located in Chelan County, just to the northwest of the city of Chelan. The reservation's name is adapted from that of Fort Colville, which was named for Andrew Colville, a London governor of the Hudson's Bay Company and had been founded before the region became part of the United States.

The Confederated Tribes have 8,700 descendants from 12 aboriginal tribes. The tribes are known in English as: the Colville, the Nespelem, the Sanpoil, the Lake (Sinixt), the Palus, the Wenatchi, the Chelan, the Entiat, the Methow, the southern Okanagan, the Sinkiuse-Columbia, and the Nez Perce of Chief Joseph's Band. Some members of the Spokane tribe also settled the Colville reservation later on. The full origin of the adoption of the name "Colville" tribe are unknown since the name only goes back to the foundings of the resevation (should also be noted that certain tribal members find it offensive to be called Colville). The spoken language of the tribe is a variation of Salishan with the exception of the Nez Perce and Palus who belong to a separate language family, most common dialect used by the tribe is Okanogan, though tribal members use try to their own dialects.

Outsiders often named the Colville Scheulpi or Chualpay; the French traders called them Les Chaudières ("the kettles") in reference to Kettle Falls.

Lovely campsite on the shore of Twin Lake.



The Tamarack tree’s golden Fall color on display.



Ready to roll, yes, I’ll need to come back here for a camping trip next year.



Starting to sprinkle on a pass on bridge creek road East of Twin Lakes.



A sprinkling of Tamaracks again showing the golden Fall color in the forest on Bridge Creek Road. Elevation 4281 ft.



Looking South along Lake Roosevelt heading towards the Keller ferry.



Picture of my bike before strapping the tripod back on at the overlook on the West shore of Lake Roosevelt.



The modest approach to the Keller Ferry looking South across Lake Roosevelt.



The Keller ferry is about to dock and prepare to load. The line was 1 deep. 



Motorcycles are a great conversation starter. This Ferry staff was a retired Alaska fisherman who used to have a motorcycle back “in the day”.



The Ferry captain has chosen a good line.



I shortened my trip this day due to a tremendous rain shower that developed shortly after arriving on the South side of Lake Roosevelt. It was another interesting and enjoyable day ride.
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