The Holiday Season is Upon Us. How do you celebrate?


On the Cusp of Winter on the River of No Return near the cabin (Salmon River, Stanley Idaho).

Goat Creek Meadow at the cabin starts to collect the white stuff.

Goat Creek at the cabin starts to freeze over.

It is December (at least on the Julian Calendar). And that means […]

Late Afternoon on the Oregon Trail

I decided to take in the late afternoon sun with a drive on the Oregon Trail (U.S. 20) and catch some of the last colors of fall. Above is Lava Lake which sits just west of the Craters of the Moon National Monument. For the traveller on the trail in the 1800’s Lava Lake […]

Fall Colors Starting to Peak

The colors are starting to hit their stride in the Wood River and Salmon River basin.

Are you stopping for a moment in your highly important and very busy day to take in what is changing around you?

The North Entrance to the Valley Club and Jeff’s home in the Wood River Valley of […]

Turkey, The Birds and Wine Country

Linda and I took a quick trip to The Russian River Valley and coastal regions of California to see family (brother Roger and sister in-law Lynette liver in Sonoma County) for Thanksgiving. My brother Dave and sister in-law Brenda flew in from Kansas City to join the festivities. The 776 mile trip each way from […]

Fall is Going Fast: Get Your Color Fix Before It Is Gone!

Okay, okay… I understand that you are very busy, very important, and buried in the details of one of the most important issues known to human-kind. However, have you taken a moment to pull your head out from [fill in the blank] and soaked in the colors of fall-time?

In spite of being exceptionally self-important […]

The 21 Lake Tour – 56 Hours Off Trail and 28,000 Vertical Feet

Jeff Lubeck paddles on Warbonnet Lake.

21 Lakes Route. Inset the Sawtooth Wilderness. Map © EB Phillips – all rights reserved. Overlay Jeff Lubeck















The Redfish Lake drainage in the Sawtooth National Recreation Area (SNRA) situated between the towns […]

Persistence, Patience & Voila

Have you ever had an expectation for an event, and despite best laid plans the result is simply not of which you had hoped?

I could list all of mine, but that would entail about 58 volumes of narrative. In this case it involves my friend, partner, associate and son – Kyle.

Kyle proposes that […]

McDonald Peak – Dawn with Five Mountain Ranges as the View

The trip to the top of McDonald Peak (10,089 ft.) in the Sawtooth Range is a 3,200 vertical foot ascent all in snow. McDonald sits between Alturas and Pettit Lakes and look directly across the valley at Horton Peak of the White Cloud Mountain Range. The round-trip effort of 24+ hours includes a dawn […]

Skiing in the Backcountry and Your Backyard

One of the great benefits of a batch of early season snowstorms is that skiing peaks and ridgelines with significant vertical could be had merely by walking out of the house. In some cases this means literally (i.e., Lubeck Ridge 1,200 vertical) or figuratively as in drive the car for a mile or so, park […]

Let It Rain

One of the implications of a change in local atmospheric conditions for the past few years is that less snowfall in the region means a greater dependence on rainfall. The Wood River Valley has seen more rain than normal the last few weeks, but the fear (legitimate) and fear mongering (not legitimate) is […]