Monday, May 3, 2021

Twin Falls, Idaho

Twin Falls will be the largest city we visit this month with over 51,000 people. We thought this would be a nice first stop to get our coach organized as it's only about 165 miles from our home....and boy....did we organize! Well, Kim has done most of it while I slept in....zzzzzzzzzzzz.

The big attraction in Twin Falls is the Shoshone Falls. Here's a few photos of when the Snake River is really flowing over the falls and some with very little.

Springtime runoff

We went here in the Fall to see the falls. I forgot that there's very little river flow during the autumn. Duh!

We went one time when there was so much mist we could hardly see the falls....but...

...but it made for some terrific rainbows.

The wind was blowing around 25mph. You can see how it is pushing the falls to the side.

Here's the overlook where you can view from above.

Shoshone Falls is 212 high which is 36" higher than Niagara Falls and flows over a rim 900 feet wide. Niagara Falls is 185 feet and is 1,060 feet wide. 

The flow of the Shoshone Falls is dependent on many variables. One of which is the amount of snowfall our region receives each winter. On years with heavy snowfalls, Shoshone Falls can reach flows upwards of 20,000 CFS (cubic feet per second). In a typical year, the spring flows at Shoshone Falls will peak between 10,000 and 12,000 CFS. To compare....Niagara Falls has Avg. Volume: 85,000 CFS.

The Snake River serves as the lifeblood of our region. Harnessing the water from the Snake River for irrigation is a crucial part of our local economy. Twenty miles upstream, the water is diverted to irrigate over 500,000 acres of farmland. It is estimated that the crops produced in these fields are worth $62,000,000 annually.

Chobani factory
Chobani (formerly Agro Farma) opened its new state-of-the-art yogurt manufacturing plant in Twin Falls, Idaho, US, in December 2012. Spread over an area of one million ft², which is equivalent to 20 football fields, it is the largest yoghurt production facility in the world. An investment of $450m was made in the facility.

We called to see if could get a tour but they don't have any. Rats.

We did not expect to see this in Twin was right down the street from our RV park.

Chobani’s yoghurt is the best-selling yoghurt brand in the US. The new Twin Falls facility will help Chobani to increase its presence in the western part of the US and enable it to bring its products faster into the market. It will also enable the company to launch new product innovations.

The plant will use four to five million pounds of milk every day to produce 2.4 million cases of Greek yogurt per week.

We buy their yoghurt because we like to support the local products.

Once upon a time there was a shepherd
In 2005, Hamdi took a loan from the Small Business Administration, bought an old yogurt plant, and brought a small group of passionate individuals together to make the real, wholesome yogurt that he remembered from his childhood. He called the company Chobani, “shepherd” in Turkish, to endow it with the hard-working and compassionate spirit of the mountain farmer.

Perfecting our craft
For the next two years, Hamdi devoted himself to the craft, carefully building his team to ensure quality from the ground up. In 2007, his dream to make delicious, nutritious, natural, and accessible yogurt finally came to fruition, when the very first cup of Chobani® Greek Yogurt hit the shelf.

Pretty neat story.

The Bonneville Flood

Thousands of years ago, the Great Salt Lake in Utah was once called Lake Bonneville and, you can see from the map below, how it almost covered all of western Utah.

Sometime between about 13 and 15 thousand years ago the northernmost arm of massive Lake Bonneville stood against a dam of relatively soft sedimentary rock and alluvium that blocked Red Rock Pass. As Lake Bonneville deepened rapidly at the end of the last ice age the water rose some 400 feet against this unconsolidated rock. At some point, as the planet began its lurch out of the ice age vast Lake Bonneville spilled over this dam. As the waters poured through the mountain pass they quickly ate their way through the 400 feet of softer material until they excavated down to a harder layer of granitic rock and there the lake stabilized for a time.

To compare the flow of the Lake Bonneville Flood....the local Teton Dam Flood had spent itself within 8 or 10 hours, the length of time it took for the reservoir to drain. Additionally, the peak discharge of one million cubic feet per second was only sustained for the first few hours after the dam collapsed and only in the immediate vicinity of the rupture. The distance encompassing serious damage downstream from the dam was perhaps 40 miles, for the flood wave had mostly spent itself by the time it reached Idaho Falls. 

By contrast, the Great Bonneville flood sustained peak discharges of about 40 million cubic feet per second for as long as a year, and the distance over which this peak discharge was maintained was more than 1000 miles.

Here's what the flood did to the Snake River canyon.

You can see the Snake River. Everything to the right and left was scoured by the Lake Bonneville Flood! Over 400 feet high and 70mph!

You can see the canyon walls to the right and left where the flood topped out. Amazing.

We did not know we would see so much in Twin Falls. But, it seems that no matter where we go, there's always more to see than what we believed. Life is grand!

Thank you for following. We'll see you from our next stop.


If we are not watching, Katie likes to chew on the jigsaw pieces. We find them later all mashed up on the floor.

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Let's give Nevada a try

What city do people think of when you mention Nevada? VEGAS....right? Well, no Las Vegas or the other big city, Reno, on this trip. We're going to be desert rats in small towns. 

Here's the population breakdown of the towns we're going to visit: 175 people,  68 people, 182 people, 1176 people, 1807 people, 217 people..

You're asking, "What is there?" 

Bonneville Salt Flats • A spot where you can view the curvature of the earth • Bristlecone Pine Trees that are between 4,000 and 5,000 years old • Wild Burro Refuge • Death Valley • East entrance to Yosemite • Eastern Sierra Nevada mountains • Mono Lake • Bodie Ghost Town • Basque food restaurants • Alabama Hills Rock Formations • tiny BBQ restaurants • Star Wars Canyon....and much more! for upcoming entries as we poke around the great state of Nevada !


Monday, March 8, 2021

Getting eager to take off again!

 It's early March and the winter is finally starting to relax it's hold on us. Weather is in the 50's, almost getting into the 60's ! 

One thing nice about the winter....we get great views from our deck during the morning...and afternoon....

...and, yes, we got some snow....

We're getting cabin fever and are itching to get back out on the road but we have doctor's appointments in late April, so May looks like when we will start. I think we'll do some northern Nevada as a shake-down cruise before our serious summer travels. Here's our route so far...

We'll see Shoshone Falls, the curvature of the earth at Wendover, the Great Basin National Park from Ely, Death Valley for 4 days, watch the jets fly through Star Wars Canyon (see link below),see the best ghost town in the states...Bodie, California... kayak on Mono Lake, see some friends in the different cities, then home. One month.

Watch these jets  at Star Wars Canyon just west of Death Valley!

We'll be posting so, if you're interested, take a peek.

So glad when this masking is all over....


Sunday, October 25, 2020

HOME for the winter

 A great summer trip is behind us now and back home to spend the winter. Here's a map of our five-month travels...

Five months. 37 Stops ! ....and many experiences, locations, and sites along the way.

Just a few of the Highlights:
  • Glacial Lake Missoula
  • Kayaking in Lake McDonald at Glacier National Park
  • Theodore Roosevelt National Park car trip in North Dakota
  • Staying at a yacht harbor in Duluth, Minnesota
  • Cheese, cheese, cheese in Wisconsin!
  • Iowa state capitol in Des Moines
  • Custer State Park in South Dakota
  • Elk in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
  • Kayaking under the Grand Teton Mountains, Wyoming

Grand Tetons, Wyoming

Lake McDonald, Glacier NP, Montana

Tetons from the kayak...spectacular!

Lower Falls on the Yellowstone River

CHEESE in Wisconsin!!!

Male Elk in the Madison River, Yellowstone NP

Elk. Male, Female and young ones hunkered down in the grass upper right

Sunset in Iowa

We hope you enjoyed our journeys as much as we did. I apologize for not posting more entries along the way....we sure saw some wonderful things....maybe next trip. 

We celebrated our 30th Anniversary on this trip!

Katie keeping watch.

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

You give me fever! Peggy Lee Museum

 Here's one for all of you that remember Peggy Lee. 

How many of you do remember her?

The Peggy Lee Museum in Wimbledon, North Dakota !

Wimbledon is a city in Pierce Township, Barnes County, North Dakota, United States. 
The population was 216 at the 2010 census !!

In case you are not sure where Wimbledon, North Dakota is....

All photos are taken by my wife, Kim

Singer/actor Peggy Lee grew up as Norma Deloris Egstrom, living in the railroad depot where her father worked. 

The upstairs quarters have been restored with Peggy Lee memorabilia.

Norma's bedroom

An entire room upstairs is packed with Peggy Lee history and memorabilia.

One of Peggy's famous outfits she wore while performing

Here are a few of the photos in the museum.

 During six decades of professional singing, Lee recorded well over one thousand masters and performed frequently in concert, on radio and on television. She also wrote nearly 300 songs, of which dozens were recorded by other artists and a fair number became hits for her. Among her many other honors are 12 Grammy nominations (plus a Lifetime Achievement Award) and an induction in the Songwriters' Hall of Fame.

...and just a few of her album covers...

If you are interested in her biography, here's some excerpts.... I know it's a lot of text but she is an icon in the music business!

Norma began her professional career as an adolescent living in Wimbledon, ND, and traveling on weekends to nearby Valley City, where she made her debut on the radio. In 1937 she was invited to audition for WDAY in Fargo, the biggest radio station in North Dakota at the time. She was hired on the spot, but right before she went on the air, the programming director told her that ‘Norma Egstrom’ had to go and christened her with what would become her new professional name: Peggy Lee.

Nationwide popularity and chart-hitting success first came to her in 1941 after being hired as the singer with the Benny Goodman Orchestra. While working with Goodman, she met Dave Barbour, the band’s guitarist and the man who would become her first husband and father to her daughter, Nicki. When Dave was fired from the band for “fraternizing with the girl singer,” Lee gave notice and – looking forward to becoming a full-time wife and mother – announced that she was retiring. Peggy and Dave were married in 1943, and though the marriage only lasted eight years, she considered him to be the love of her life and greatest musical collaborator.

Lee’s “retirement” didn’t last long either, and she found herself once again behind the microphone. She established her solo career by joining the then-emerging Capitol Records and ranks as the female act with the longest stay at that renowned label, her musical alma mater: 24 years. She also spent five very productive years at Decca Records in the 1950s, and recorded albums with several other major and independent labels starting in the mid-1970s. Throughout, Lee continued to work extensively on television, radio and in concert up until the mid 1990s.

Her vast and varied catalog of songs flourished from such longevity in the music business: she recorded more than 1,100 masters and over 50 original albums. Her total number of radio broadcast performances is over 800, and her television appearances surpass the 200-mark.

Best known for such songs as “Fever,” “Why Don’t You Do Right,” “I’m A Woman” and “Is That All There Is?,” she amassed over 100 chart entries beginning with “I Got It Bad” (1941) and culminating, to date, with the posthumous hit “Similau” (2017). Among the myriad music honors bestowed upon Lee are 13 Grammy® Award nominations, a Grammy® win in 1969, and a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1995.

One of the foremothers of the singer-songwriter school, Lee ranks among the most successful female singer-songwriters in the annals of American popular music. She wrote over 200 songs – most often lyrics, but sometimes music as well, with a variety of collaborators, including Harold Arlen, Cy Coleman, Duke Ellington, Quincy Jones, Marian McPartland and Victor Young. Some of the artists who have covered Peggy Lee compositions are Tony Bennett, Nat King Cole, Natalie Cole, Bing Crosby, Doris Day, Ella Fitzgerald, Judy Garland, Diana Krall, Queen Latifah, Barry Manilow, Bette Midler, Janelle MonĂ¡e, Nina Simone, Regina Spektor and Sarah Vaughan.

Walt Disney took notice of Peggy’s songwriting ability, and in 1953 he hired her to write all of the original lyrics for his classic animated film, Lady and the Tramp. Walt liked Lee’s song demos so much, he asked her to voice four of the characters, and even named one after her.

Lady and the Tramp was not her only work in film. She appeared in several motion pictures, most notably at Warner Bros. in The Jazz Singer (1952), costarring Danny Thomas, and Pete Kelly’s Blues (1955), which brought her an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress and the Audience Award for Most Promising Female Personality of 1955. 

A perennial advocate of artists’ rights, Peggy Lee was quietly standing for this cause as early as the 1940s. In solidarity with the American Federation Musicians’ 1948 record ban, she was among the vocalists under contract who refused to do any recording activity for the entire year. 


Hope you enjoyed this trip through memory lane!

Oh...cannot forget our Katie photo...


Twin Falls, Idaho

Twin Falls will be the largest city we visit this month with over 51,000 people. We thought this would be a nice first stop to get our coach...