Vacation at Home: South Fork Riverwalk #1

I am going to deviate from my topics every once in a while, and share some of my experiences over the summer enjoying the place where I live.

We don't have any big plans for a vacation this summer, so I have decided to enjoy the place where I live, and take advantage of the places around my home that are so beautiful.

The first place I want to highlight is the South Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River.  It is literally 50 yards from our front door.

Growing up in Kellogg, Idaho, I would have never described myself living in a town on the river.  Because the South Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River didn't seem like a river to me.  In fact, we didn't call it by it's formal name.  We called it "Lead Creek"  (and that is pronounced Crick....not Creek).

The river was polluted from years and years of mining waste being poured into it from the various mines up and down the river, from Mullan to Smelterville.  And the funny thing is, I never remember any adult ever telling me not to go into the river....you just knew not to go into the "crick".

I grew up in Kellogg in the 60's and 70's, when mining was as its' peak.  After I graduated from high school, the Bunker Hill Mining Company closed its' doors, which started a domino effect throughout the Silver Valley, and the mining industry was never the same.

Many regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) were also put into place, as well as the Silver Valley being declared a Superfund Site, and clean up of the areas that were contaminated with mine waste has been an ongoing thing here for years.

But the results of all of these factors has been miraculous.  If you haven't been to the Silver Valley since the 1980's. or even the 1990's, you would be amazed at how the once barren hillsides are now covered with trees from a very successful reforestation program headed up by Ed Pommerening.  These trees were being planted when I was in high school, and effects of the tree planting are unbelievable.

I could have never told you that the Silver Valley was a wetlands area.  I had never seen cat tails growing in Kellogg.  Now they are located in various places along the river.  Now everyone refers to it at the South Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River.  You rarely hear the term "Lead Creek" anymore, unless it is the Lead Creek Derby sponsored by the local Gyros every June.

I want to share with you some photographs I took from my walk along the river last week.  Again, this is 50 feet from my front door.

This is the beginning of the trail.  It is located on the south side of the river, on Hill Street/
The river is beautiful and it peacefully goes by through my hometown.
A pretty daisy along the way.
The trees have gotten quite tall along the riverbank.
White Caps!
Looking across the river at Kellogg Middle School.
Looking back at the Morning Star Lodge at Silver Mountain Resort.
The end of the trail.
This is just a small glimpse of all the beauty I experienced walking along the Dike on the South Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River.  I could walk this every day if I wanted.  And I may start doing it more often than I have.
I hope you have enjoyed a glimpse into this beautiful place I call home, and the beauty that surrounds me each and every day.

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