Note: This is part 2 of this trip. Part 1 is here.
Arriving in the Idaho backcountry is always a thrill for me. The beauty is simply unbelievable and the rush of landing at these airstrips – even Johnson Creek (which is a pretty mild place) gets the blood pumping.
Our arrival at went smoothly and there weren’t too many folks there yet for the weekends SuperCub.org event we picked a reasonably good camping spot on the west side of the runway.
It never takes too long to setup camp and after a long day of hiking and flying, I was bushed! Early to bed and I slept like a baby. Thankfully, it did not get very cold.
Friday morning came quickly and we made an early departure from Johnson Creek. The plan was to head north but rain showers laid waste to our plans. Instead, we went east and took at a look at Mile High on our way to Flying B.
I really enjoy the Flying B Ranch! Landing along the river on the gorgeous green grass runway buried deep down in the mountains is spectacular! This landing was exciting as ever due to the number of aircraft parked at the south end of the runway. Here we were fed a great breakfast and bought some keepsakes from the gift shop.
Departing to the south took us over Lower Loon (C53) on the way to Upper Loon (U72). We landed at Upper Loon but, do to my friends concern with a starter problem, we just spun around took off. The approach to Upper Loon is a very kewl – it up stream in a very pretty wash that has a huge chunk of granite sticking out of the side. You aim to be right beside the mid-point of this granite protrusion which will put you right on glide slope. The departure takes you right past this rock. Lots of fun!!
We then landed at Thomas Creek (2U8) and shutdown. Indian Hot Springs are not too far of a hike up the river so off we went. This hike really wasted my feet. The blisters that developed the day before really went wild today. I eventually fell behind and never did make it to the hot springs. I limped back to the plane in a fair amount of pain. That was the end of hiking on this trip – a big disappointment. For those interested in this hike, you simply start hiking up the road from the building at the south end of the runway. After crossing the bridge, take an immediate left onto a foot path that follows the edge of the river upstream. The hot springs are just after a spot where the trail is semi-difficult to follow (lots of rocks) and is right at the waters edge.
From Thomas Creek, we departed to the west and landed at McCall for fuel. We arrived back at Johnson Creek at a relatively late 4pm. I took some time to nurse my poor feet. Draining the blisters and cleaning them up helped relieve the pain.
Friday night is the SuperCub.org dinner at which we were treated to Brats. One of the reasons we love this event is not having to worry about bringing much food since two dinners are provided and breakfast isn’t too hard to find at nearby airstrips. Thanks very much to the folks that provided the fixin’s and were doing the preparation!
… to be continued.