Idaho Trails Association – South Fork of the Salmon River (Day 1), Frank Church Wilderness, Idaho

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Time to fly into the low country of the Frank Church Wilderness for the first Idaho Trails Association (ITA) trip of the season, Our crew flew 2 planes into the South Fork Ranch which is located just outside the wilderness boundaries. Our trusty pilot Thor delivered us safely into this tricky landing spot. I encourage everyone to visit the ITA web site. Simply join the ITA if you want to support trails or check out their 2022 trail project list if you want to get further involved.

Since I was in the first plane, I was able to take a landing sequence of plane two. I can tell you that I have landed in quite a few backcountry airfields now. This one was a bit scary! I was shaking for about 30 minutes after we landed! Click on the image if you want to enlarge it a bit.

Our crew for the week, united at the South Fork Ranch. From left to right: Craig, Joe, Jeramy, Randy, Scott, Carl, Wes (our South Fork Ranch Host), Nate, and myself behind the camera.

Since the ranch sits outside the wilderness and it is accessible 6 months out of the year by car, our ranch host Wes was able to give our bags a ride to our accommodations for the evening. No ruffing it tonight!

A few shots from around the Ranch including horse shoes, and the hot tub.

Time for a get to know you social. Wes (standing on the left) was an amazing host!

After some snacks, we did a little evening warmup hike headed upstream from the Ranch.

Our crew leader Scottie is quite familiar with this area and took us to some nearby rock paintings.

A couple of Ranch shots…. Just incredible! The second image is shot looking downstream with Chicken Peak and the Franck Church Wilderness in the background. That is the direction we will be heading tomorrow.

Finally, our trailhead for the morning. In the background, notice the airstrip on the other side of the trees. Not exactly flat!

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