Mike's Visit - pt2

At the BSU game

After our long hike in the Pioneers, my brother and I thought that a change of pace would be appropriate. The forecast was for a warm Saturday so we wanted to do something around town. What is Boise famous for? The Blue Turf of course. BSU had a home game against Miami of Ohio and we were able to get tickets. It was actually hot in the sun when we first got there. Fortunately we were in the cheap seats way up high on the west side so it only took about a half hour for the shadow of the sky boxes to reach us. After that it was very pleasant although most of the people in the stands that were still in the sun were sweating.

BSU was playing Miami of Ohio. It was only the second game of the season for BSU. They were coming off a close loss at Michigan State. With only about three returning seniors there were a lot of question marks about this team. The home team won 39-12. Their defense really looked good and in this game the offense woke up. Miami of Ohio isn't that tough a team though so we'll have to wait to see how the season turns out.

A clear view when we start out

My original intent when Mike and I planned this trip was to take him to the Sawtooths. With the Trinity Ridge fire just to the southwest and the Halstead fire just to the northwest the Sawtooths had been covered in smoke for the past two months. But the unusual south wind we had enjoyed in the Pioneers was actually blowing the smoke away from the Sawtooths. Usually our winds are from the northwest. I figured since we had one great hike in the bag a trip to the Sawtooths was worth a try. I figured we would do the classic hike in these mountains, up Iron Creek to Sawtooth Lake.

The forecast was for the winds to shift from the south to the west during the day so we got an early start. As we drove towards Stanley it was clear and Mike got a beautiful view of the Sawtooths. It looked like a great day for hiking. Although I have done this hike more than any other it is still a favorite of mine. I had even done it once this season already.

Mike and a very hazy view of Sawtooth Lake

Mike was impressed by the views of the pinnacles above Iron Creek. The first distant views came after we crossed the steam at the half way point. As we looked down the valley towards Stanley it was hidden in smoke. The wind had shifted. The smoke was being blown down to Stanley from Banner summit and then was blowing up the valley behind us. We turned and started hiking right away but the smoke was faster than we were and overtook us by the time we reached the overview of Alpine Lake. I was hoping that maybe Sawtooth Lake was still clear but the smoke beat us there too. We settled in at standard spot for lunch and could (barely) see Mt. Regan across the lake. But the light definitely spoiled the view. Still Mike said he got a good feel for the area. He'll just have to look at pictures from a different trip to know how pretty Sawtooth Lake really is.

After lunch we had a nice hike out and a long drive back to Boise. The next day Mike flew back to Chicago. It had been a good visit and we were determined to do another mountain trip next summer.