About 18:30 on August 19th (Friday night) Barb and I decided to go to the B-23 bomber that crash landed on Loon Lake and slid into the forest in 1943 for our 29th wedding anniversary. We threw some stuff in the Jeep and drove to Riggins expecting to find a motel in either Whitebird or Riggins. There were none. The fire fighters had taken what the tourist hadn’t. We ended up finding an open spot in a campground just off the Salmon river about 12:30 AM on Saturday morning and slept in the Jeep. After waking at about 6:30 we drove about 50 miles, mostly on one-lane roads, to Chinook campground. We hiked ten miles round trip from Chinook Campground to the crash site and back to replace a missing geocache (B-23). Barb had not been there before and was very impressed with the site. The pictures are here.
On the way out we figured we should go through McCall to improve our chances of finding a motel. We arrived back at the Jeep about 18:00 tired and sore. From the Chinook Campground it took us only an hour to reach McCall. Again, the motels were all full except for a luxury suite for $225/night. We drove to New Meadows. Again, all full. We called several motels in Grangeville. Again, all full. We drove north, dirty, tired, and getting hungry. At Pinehurst we found a motel with a Vacancy sign. We rang the bell and waited, and waited. Finally a man appeared to tell us his “No” sign was broken. We drove to Riggins and found a motel with two rooms available. We were thrilled! We showered and went to dinner. It was about 20:40 when we walked into the restaurant. Except for the cook and the waitress we had the place entirely to ourselves. Riggins appears to close up early on Saturday nights. It was great food and we went to bed tired and very happy. It was a great day in the woods and one of our best anniversaries yet.