My husband and I love loading up the family and driving around, exploring the beautiful sights nearby. We live in a beautiful part of the country, and are constantly amazed by God’s handiwork!
Fact: Exploring the back roads in a school bus is harder than in a Suburban!
It’s longer, wider, and taller. The ride is also bumpier off the beaten path.
But, that doesn’t keep up from heading out on forest service roads and seeing what we can find.
The day before Father’s Day, we headed across the state line to Idaho. We were using this blog post of North Idaho waterfalls as inspiration.
Except, the directions on that site were pretty much non-existent. So we used a combination of scouring the internet for other details, and asking Siri, “How do you get to —?” to get to where we were going.
Those things work well as long as there’s an internet connection, but once you get into the backwoods, that’s not always a reality. Our signal disappeared completely several times throughout our drive. So if you head out exploring, make sure you tell someone the general direction where you’re heading. You know, just in case!
Snow Creek Falls
Located in Bonners Ferry, Snow Creek Falls is accessible off of Snow Creek Road. The kids really enjoyed hiking to this falls with Bryan. Owen, Bryson, and I stayed on the bus because the trail wasn’t wheelchair accessible, and I didn’t want to fight to keep Owen from diving into the water. (He LOVES water!)
We had fun on the bus, and even ventured out to walk along the road a bit, with Bryson in the sling. Owen is getting better at walking, which is such a blessing! And on another note, I’ve found that water shoes are a good shoe for him. He doesn’t mind them nearly as much as others, and leaves them on fairly well.
While we were hanging out, Bryan was capturing some great shots of the other kids. Here’s one of my favorites:
He also got pictures of the falls and general surroundings. The kids said you could feel the spray from this waterfall!
After leaving Snow Creek Falls, we started heading back towards Washington. Well, at least until we realized we were close to another beautiful space. So we altered our route a bit.
Roosevelt Grove of Ancient Cedars and Granite Falls
Along the border, near Nordman, Idaho, is the Roosevelt Grove of Ancient Cedars. You’ll also find Granite Falls.
Not wanting to stay on the bus again, Owen, Bryson, and I joined the rest of the family.
No, it was not wheelchair accessible. When the going got too rough for Owen, I threw him up on my shoulders and carried him. Jayme and Bryan took turns packing Bryson. Here’s a shot of the trail at one of the worst spots:
It was worth it though, the falls were beautiful.
And I loved that the trail was far enough from the water most of the time that it didn’t tempt Owen as much. The overlook to the falls was fenced, and I didn’t have worry that Owen was going to plunge through the barrier and head to the water.
We decided to keep hiking, and continue on the trail to see the cedars. Unfortunately, it took a lot longer than expected. It wasn’t a long hike, but we started too late in the day and were going slowly.
So we didn’t have much time to explore the woods there. But, Bryan got this shot of some of the kids by a cedar:
The trees are huge!
We considered just continuing towards Washington from the Ancient Grove, but the road came out at Ione, many miles from home. So, we turned back and came home through Priest River instead.
All in all, we spent a solid day exploring the beautiful forests and waterfalls of North Idaho. I know we’ll be back, as there are some other waterfalls we want to check out.
Do you enjoy driving around just to look at the scenery, without a definite plan?