In Idaho Backcountry

It was a short hop from McCall to Johnson Creek. I left early in the cool morning air. Charlie Mike had to climb hard to get up over the peaks separating McCall from the creek. Once over the ridge, it was just following one river valley to the next.

Over Yellow Pine (pop 32), I could see down the valley that holds Johnson Creek airport. The instructions say to fly south on the west side of the valley, past the house (people live there full time), then circle back to downwind on the east side of the valley, base and land.

After my first call that I was on downwind, I heard a pilot call they were back-taxiing on the runway. What????, Ok, so I did another loop around the valley, letting him go.

Landing on grass is always a pleasure in 3CM. This was the best ever! I was in the Idaho Backcountry! What a thrill!

The campground is AMAZING! There are tie-downs for more than 50 planes. There are picnic tables, toilets, and a covered area with wifi, power for charging, a freezer for your ice, coffee in the morning, picnic tables, and hot showers…….ALL FREE.

From there, it’s 5 miles to Yellow Pine, a few miles to the hot spring, and just down the road is a salmon rescue. I went and watched the DNR agent handle 10 salmon, two of which he relocated. I rode my bike to town, I hiked up to the hot spring, and I barely scratched the surface.

I was only there for two nights, not nearly long enough. It was a delicious taste of what’s to come next summer!

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