Ever since I first drove Skyline Ridge Rd and saw hill after hill of aspen trees, I have yearned for the cool autumn day that I could return and see those hills blanketed in yellow and orange. This past Sunday was the day!
This drive is one of my favorites for getting up and away from things. The road, aptly named Skyline Ridge, follows a ridge up into the high hills at the foot of the Caribou Mountain Range of southeast Idaho. Passing through the Tex Creek Wildlife Management Area, this particular drive offers opportunities to see moose, elk, deer, etc. We saw two moose, at a distance, resting at the edge of the trees. With the contrast between the bright fall colors and the dark moose, they were very easy to spot! I didn't get a close up picture of them, but one of the photos below has a moose in it! See if you can spot him resting in a field surrounded by trees!
The road conditions are deteriorating this late into the season. With each fall rain, and soon snowfall, potholes are deepening, puddles remain, and deep ruts are forming across and through the dirt road. We really rattled up Phoebe (my Rav4) especially driving back to Idaho Falls with the sun in our eyes. It was difficult to see the road while staring directly into the setting sun. However, these hills came alive at golden hour as the setting sun bathed the landscape in golden hues. The highest peaks of the Teton Mountains emerged from the distant haze as the evening light highlighted their stark peaks. Deep shadows contrasted by fresh snow on their faces made these mountains impressively visible even 2 hours away!
Caribou Mountain has a fresh dusting of snow on it now. The mountain rises to just under 10,000 ft, putting current snow fall elevation at about 8500-9000 ft. Soon, snow will cover Skyline Ridge, then will fall in the valley below. Winter is coming, it will be some time before we will be able to return to these beautiful hills. So, for now, enjoy a few pictures from our gorgeous drive! The fall colors are sticking around for a few more days, but temperatures are set to drop soon. Time to see the golden leaves is quickly passing!
Enjoy the photos!