Dust Devils and Grizzly Fighters

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Tin Cup Creek, Caribou County, Idaho

By William Deverell

Back on the road, July 21, 2018.  We left Jackson this morning around nine.  As we drove alongside the mighty Snake River, we saw a bald eagle splash down into the river from about forty of fifty feet above, probably doing a lot better at fishing than we have.  We made our traditional and always-fun stop at Tin Cup Creek just over the Wyoming line into Caribou County, Idaho.  It’s a small stream of about ten miles’ length, beautiful and cold.  Each year, I love this part of the drive the most.  Not much looks to have changed – a big ranch or two notwithstanding – in a long, long stretch of years.

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Tin Cup Creek, Carbou County, Idaho

I pulled over at this interesting historical marker in Wayan, ID (population just over 200, with a surprisingly young median age of less than thirty).  John Grey, who may have been mixed race Iroquois and Scottish (with perhaps Cree lineage as well) was a long ways from home when he wandered into the Wayan Valley looking for beaver in 1819 or 1820 for the North West Company out of Montreal (which would soon thereafter merge with the Hudson’s Bay Company).  Kanye West and Kim Kardashian named their daughter for this famed fur-trading operation.  No, they didn’t.

Grey’s other name – Ignace Hatchiorauguasha – signaled his Catholic loyalty to St. Ignatius.  Aside from famed grizzly-fighting abilities, Grey seems to have been a gifted intermediary between whites and Indians in this most rugged terrain of the early 19th century mountain West.

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John Grey and the Wayan Valley

Not long after, we encountered this dust devil about a quarter mile in front of us.  I thought at first it was a fire, then a smudge on my windshield.   But, no, it was some wild atmospheric something-or-other, and it was amazing.

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Idaho Dust Devil

In Salt Lake for the night.   We’ll hit the fabulous climbing gym, The Front, in the morning (or one of us will).  St. George tomorrow evening, then back home in Pasadena around lunchtime on Monday.  We have had a stellar trip, but we miss our loved ones (human and canine).

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