Sawtooth/Salmon River Scenic Byways

After a wonderful evening at the Redfish Riverside Inn, we headed southeast to Sun Valley. This put us on the Sawtooth Scenic Byway. It was a beautiful cool ride, we actually had to wear our jacket for the first leg, up over Galena Pass at some 8700 ft, and then down to Ketchum & Sun Valley.

Now I hadn’t been to Sun Valley in some 20 plus years, and Mandi had never been, so it would be another shared adventure. Sun Valley wasn’t as quaint as I remembered, and plenty crowded. We grabbed a quick breakfast at Bigwood Bread, and were quick to point back up at Stanley for our next leg to Hamilton.

Sawtooth/Salmon River Scenic Byways

Once we again cleared Galena Pass we dropped down and pulled in to have a gander at Redfish Lake, that many of the locals recreate at. We were hoping for a quiet photogenic experience, but instead found the lake to be overcrowded, with boats, people, campers etc. Still hoping to get a nice picture or two in we left the lodge area and rounded the lake’s north side and rode to the boat launch area on the NE end of the lake here too all campgrounds overflowed, and the ramp was very busy, but we did find a restroom and place to splash some water on our faces as the temps were rising fast to the upper 90’s.

From Redfish Lake we rolled back up to Stanley for fuel, and a cold drink before pressing on to Hamilton, MT. As we came into Stanley we noticed a group of Harleys parked by the river but saw no riders, so we continued for our refills and then headed north towards Hamilton, putting us on the Salmon River Scenic Byway, Mandi wanted to stop at the Hot Springs just north of Stanley, so we did as we needed to dip our gear gear (wraps) in the river to keep us cool for as long as possible. While we did this I heard that Harley Rumble, a bunch of bikes rolling by, so we hurried to get back on the road to see if we could catch them. Lucky for us I knew about some construction up ahead and figured we’d catch them there and we did.

So we tagged along with this group of 5 bikes all the way down to Salmon, ID, taking up the tail gunner position. Along the way we missed (or blew out a corner while attempting to keep an aggressive driver in an SUV off their/our butts, but luckily I had the room to keep it going and get back in front of the pushy driver, who later bailed off. We followed the group to a little watering hole The Dusty Mule and they kindly bought us a round of adult beverages while we shared stories of our adventures. We then followed them to North Fork, but our destination was on up the road across another pass in Hamilton, MT. Along the way we made a quick stop in Darby MT, for a look at the Dutton Ranch, from the popular “Yellowstone” series on the Paramount channel. we were only able to roll up to the front gates and steal a distant picture of the Yellowstone Ranch Arch. Then we grabbed fuel in Darby to get us into Hamilton. After checking into our hotel, we went looking for some grub, and the hotel clerk suggested Naps Grill.

OMG! If you are ever in Hamilton, MT you must visit this place and try any of their signature burgers, it was quite possibly the best burger I’ve ever eaten! I had the Rockefeller, and Mandi the Carnegie absolutely delicious! Then we meandered back to the hotel and rested for tomorrow’s ride, as it had been a busy day.