Y'all this new spot is incredible!! Definitely among my top 3 favorite first drives I have taken to a new place! I say new, as in new to me. We drove to the Tex Creek Wildlife Management Area yesterday evening and were shocked by the beauty of the hills and canyons that seemed to appear out of nowhere as we crested the first hills out of Ammon, ID. Our route took us from W Sunnyside road to Eagle Pass Rd then on to Kepps Crossing Rd which becomes Skyline/NF-077. Yesterday evening we only made it to the beginnings of Kepps Crossing Rd where we found Leonard-Stefano, the moose haha. We couldn't decide between the two names. We turned around and vowed to return this morning early to see if we could find more wildlife!
Yesterday's setting sun lit up the yellow fields with a vibrant light that captured our gaze and refused to let go! The smoky skies from distant fires turned the sun blood red as it settled below the hills. Old buildings, remainders of a simpler past, were dotted throughout the aspen groves and sage/grass fields. Windmills hummed steadfastly in the light breeze. It was gorgeous! Then we found the canyons and streams that followed them, eventually connecting to Ririe Reservoir to the north. Among these canyons, bold volcanic rocks (remnants of Yellowstone activity) formed stark black, grey, and red cliffs. Greenery flourished on the canyon floor and cows grazed in the upper fields. There were too many roads to explore without enough time to explore them! Hunting lands are abundant out here as well as ATV and dirt bike trails. There are protected wildlife areas including the Tex Creek Wildlife Management Area that are restricted to foot and nonmotorized vehicle traffic only. We had to come back!
So we did, at 6am the next morning haha. This time we followed Kepps Crossing road for nearly 2 hours! The beauty of this region is beyond words! After reaching the top of the ridge, this road follows the skyline (aptly named Skyline Rd) for miles! Because of the smoke, our view was somewhat obstructed, but we could still make out the towering peaks of the Tetons several hours away to the north! I can't imagine how stunning this drive would be in July! The road takes you to elevations close to or breaking 7000 ft, well into the fresh pine forests of east Idaho. It blew our minds that this was only an hour and a half away from the densely populated Snake River Valley. We saw no people, only a few camp trailers, with owners away hiking, hunting, or fishing perhaps. Birds, rodents, and small mammals were abundant. The early morning air was a crisp 53 degrees, and flowers still thrived amongst the trees. We were in heaven. If you haven't explored this area, I highly recommend it! There are many places to camp, and vistas to sit for hours on top of the world. We want to go back and stargaze out there as the nearest town is over an hour away in most directions!
Here are some of the many pictures I took out there! Lydia (a professional photographer) also took many photos and will be posting and selling them soon! You can check out her Instagram @lydiiarumsey