seems like every year in May we hear variations on the same
Is the Wallowa Mountain Loop Road open yet?
Is the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway open yet?
Is Forest Road 39 or FR39 or Highway 39 open yet?
For 2014, it's going to be a little difficult to answer because
there's already major reconstruction of this beloved road going on
and it will continue through October 2014. Fortunately for us
all, the Wallowa-Whitman Office of the US Forest Service has a page
on their website with press...
you're planning your spring and summer travel schedule, here's a
great article from CNN Travel about the tallest, deepest, longest,
etc., record-setting places in the United States to visit.
Feature writer Helyn
Trickey Bradley has come up with 10 superlative sights for US
travel. Two are in Oregon. And one is right here in
Wallowa County! She writes:
The Grand Canyon in Arizona may be immense, boasting
nearly 277 river miles in length, but for sheer depth, Hells Canyon
in eastern Oregon,...
Videos and other materials are just starting to roll out about
the Seven Wonders of Oregon, a new campaign hosted by Travel Oregon
to introduce some remarkable places in our gorgeous state.
The Wallowa Mountains of Eastern Oregon and the surrounding
area were lucky (and naturally) chosen to be one of those.
Here's Travel Oregon's video about the Wallowas. She's
not named, but our friend Alice is the rider seen in the
Great teaser footage for the town of Joseph Oregon too!
Never traveled on the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway? Here's a
really good taste of what you can experience. The Oregon
Department of Transportation film crew came through a little while
ago and shot a lot of footage to create this comprehensive video
about the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway. What's nice about this
particular video is you'll see the byway in all seasons.
It's a little bit lengthy at 8 minutes, but it really takes that
long to see the scenery and some of the sights along the way.
always amazes me how much people rely on our little Hells Canyon
lodging for information about the road between Joseph Oregon
and Halfway Oregon. Everytime I look at the Google Analytics
for the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast blog, I can see how often
blog posts about this subject are searched for and read.
Forget the "Joseph Oregon hotels" or the "Wallowa Lake
hotel" search--seems like everyone wants to know if the
road is open!!!
So, here's what's going on in 2012 for Forest Road 39...
It's been two years since Joachim Becker last visited our Hells
Canyon lodging. Last time, the president of New York-based Zoho
Music made us a gift of Zoho Music's upcoming release, Tribute to J.J. Cale. And just like last
time, Joachim's stay was too short! We'd love for him to have
the opportunity to drive the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway or take a run up to
Hat Point for the incredible view.
he did leave us with another parting gift. Zoho Music's 100th
CD release is Hendrik Meurkens and...
something to do at Wallowa Lake: ride up the Wallowa Lake Tramway and
feed the squirrels (oops, did I say that?). Or ride up the
Wallowa Lake Tramway and enjoy the views! The Wallowa Lake
Tramway is open (weather permitting) every day through the first
weekend of October 2011.
And there's a lot to see from there! Views
over the Wallowa Valley, views to the Seven Devil Mountains in
Idaho past Hells Canyon, views into the Eagle Cap Wilderness.
It's a great way to see nature without...Read More
you can use from the Wallowa County Chieftain!
The center section of the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway (aka Forest
Road 39 or sometimes incorrectly called Oregon Highway 39) in
Northeastern Oregon will be repaired sometime starting in August
2011. The road is currently open but there are small sections
that are gravel only--the repairs made in summer 2010 after the
road was damaged during the 2010 spring runoff. Next month
that will change (finally!).
The 13 sections that will be paved are...Read More
by now FR 39, aka the Wallowa Mountain Loop Road, or the
center section of the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway--the connecting
road between Joseph Oregon and the Hells Canyon area of Oxbow on
the way to Halfway Oregon and Baker City--has been open about
three weeks for the 2011 season. And it
looks like it'll stick--the road hasn't washed out (yet).
The next popular question: Is the road open
to Hat Point Lookout at Hells Canyon? The
answer to that is yes and no. Last I checked with Dave...Read More
So here we are, June 8, 2011, and the unofficial
word is that Forest Road 39, the center section of the Hells Canyon
Scenic Byway, is open to through traffic!
Waters River Expeditions posted this status on their page on
Facebook today: The FS
39 road is open over Salt Creek Summit to Halfway. The crew headed
out that direction this morning for our first Hells Canyon
multi-day trip. They're excited to get down there as the
wildflowers are BEAUTIFUL right now and 45,000 cubic feet per
from Eastern Oregon knows that an Eastern Oregon vacation isn't
complete without a cattle drive.
Especially when you're in the middle of it!
Bill & I decided to drive out to the Zumwalt Prairie today
to see what's blooming on the
Nature Conservancy's land. As we came through the
intersection of Crow Creek Road and Zumwalt Road, the sign said,
"Cattle Drive Next 14 Miles." Hmmm. . .
At mile 12 or so, we found them. Lots of cattle. Lots
of calves. Lots of mooing by cows checking
is a great time of year for birdwatching in Eastern Oregon.
Many species are on their way back from winter in the south or just
passing through on their way north. And because we're so far
east in Oregon close to Hells Canyon, you'll see the
intercontinental birds that you won't necessarily find near the
Bill put up feeders in the south garden last year so guests at
breakfast can enjoy birds having their breakfast too.
Who's on the feeder this week? We're seeing our...Read More
like every spring people start searching, wanting to know if the
Hells Canyon Scenic Byway road between Joseph and Halfway is
open. Here we are after Easter 2011 and it's not yet
open for the season--sometime in May is more like
it. This road is not plowed so the opening date is (among
other things) weather dependent.
In late Spring 2010 the road suffered major damagein a few places from spring runoff. The roadbed was repaired
by Fall 2010 but not paved in those damaged places....Read More
of our favorite Joseph Oregon
restaurants opens on April 14, 2011, for the spring/summer
season. Calderas is one of those romantic getaway Oregon
style restaurants. Great wine list, fresh produce from their
own farm near Hells Canyon, creative cuisine, tremendous views of
the Wallowa Mountains--all wrapped up in one location at the north
end of town.
Starting Thursday, April 14th, Calderas is open Thursday through
Saturday 11 am to 8 pm. Once June arrives, the hours are
Wednesday through...Read More
lot of the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest is not for mountain
bikes because the Eagle Cap Wilderness lies within the forest
boundary. But, there still is mountain biking near Joseph
Oregon and inside the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest.
Trailheads used are the Salt Creek Summit (south end)--19 miles
from Joseph Oregon and part of the Redmont and Wagon Road Trail
networks, and the Ferguson Ridge Snow
Park (north end)--only 14 miles from Joseph Oregon and part of
the Redmont Trail network.
guests on the afternoon of January 2, 2011, so Heather & I
took off for a lower elevation hike along the Imnaha River.
We hoped to get to the confluence of the Imnaha and the Snake River
in Hells Canyon, but got too late of a start (we did serve
breakfast this morning).
If you're here for an Eastern Oregon vacation in winter and are
tired of snow, then the drive down through Imnaha and on the Dug
Bar Road leading to the trailhead at Cow Creek is pretty
refreshing. Plenty of wildlife. We saw...
It's been a long summer without complete access along the Hells
Canyon Scenic Byway from Joseph Oregon to Halfway Oregon along
Forest Road 39 (also called the Wallowa Mountain Loop Road).
Spring flooding in June 2010 washed out significant sections of
Forest Road 39 near the intersection of this road and Oregon
86. However, this report from Angelika Garroute of Wallowa
Valley Online notes that the road will be open again (in gravel)
probably by mid-November 2010. Paving will occur in
love it here at the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast when our
guests take the opportunity to do what they'd really love to
do. Recently, we hosted a couple who arrived with their road
bicycles and her yoga mat.
Turns out he enjoys serious cycling in the morning before breakfast
and she enjoys her time on the yoga mat.
We sent him off on a leg of the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway on the
first morning--to the intersection of the Imnaha Highway and Forest
Road 39. It's 8.3 miles each way--not a tough...Read More
nice to find things to do near Wallowa Lake when you're on vacation
in Eastern Oregon. With Highway 39 closed near the junction
of Highways 39 and Oregon 86, you can still reach most of the
Wallowa Mountain Loop Road (Highway 39) from the Joseph Oregon