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Boise to Idaho Falls via Craters of the Moon?

Discussion in 'Northwest' started by goneskiian, Jun 9, 2017.

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  1. goneskiian

    goneskiian Active Member

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    We'll be traveling to Jackson, WY later this month and I was trying to make a stop at Craters of the Moon work. I see RV parks in Mountain Home and Arco that would be helpful.

    Are there any options I'm missing?

    Oh yeah, we'll be in our 90D but with bikes on the back so 200 - 210 is about our range.

    Thanks!
    -Ian
     
  2. ChadS

    ChadS Petroleum is for sissies

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    We went there in our S85 just about a year ago. We started at the Twin Falls Supercharger with 245 miles, and got back with 44 miles.

    I didn't write down speed or weather, but I seem to recall we went pretty close to the speed limit, and the weather was pretty good. Which means our 201 miles used was close to best case, so if you hit winds or rain or anything you might have a problem. Any chance you could leave the bikes locked up at the Twin Falls Visitor's Center?

    Plugshare doesn't show much in the area, but if you use an RV finder app there are some campgrounds (for example Shoshone) where you could get a boost if it looks too close.
     
  3. goneskiian

    goneskiian Active Member

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    Thanks Chad. We'd rather not leave the bikes as we were planning on trying to keep going into Idaho Falls and on to Jackson. I suppose with favorable winds and slower than freeway speeds we might make it OK.

    We should be able to make it to Arco and use the RV park there to get enough to press on to the Supercharger in Idaho Falls. I'm about to send a message off to the Craters of the Moon staff to find out if there might be some outlets near parking we could use.
     
  4. goneskiian

    goneskiian Active Member

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    It looks like a top up or very close to it at the Supercharger in Twin Falls will make this doable. It's only 173 miles from Twin Falls to Idaho Falls along this route. We'll give it a go and report back in a few weeks.
     
  5. Rocky_H

    Rocky_H Active Member

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    Glad to see some questions near me. I went to that area last year, but I didn't have the Tesla with me. Yeah, going straight across highway 20 from Boise to Arco is possibly going to be too long probably with bikes hurting your aerodynamics. But I think charging up in Twin Falls and then heading up highway 26 should be totally easy (like just over 100 rated miles, plus some extra for the bad aerodynamics).

    We stayed at the KOA campground in Arco, which is a really great place, and I would totally recommend it. We were tent camping, and they even had TT-30 outlets right next to our site, which we could have used. We also saw a lot of really big RV's, so I think they have 14-50 outlets at those other spots too. Call and make sure of that.

    The entrance to the Craters of the Moon area is only about 20 miles back west of Arco, so I would still recommend staying at the KOA in Arco, where you can actually have a decent restaurant there in town for dinner and breakfast.

    We did this trip on a weekend and saw a few really good things. On Saturday morning, we saw Experimental Breeder Reactor 1, which was the first nuclear reactor in the world to generate electricity. They do excellent guided tours seven days a week, but it's only open from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Then, we did the Philo Farnsworth TV and Pioneer history museum in Rigby. It's dinky and quirky and kind of interesting and is only $2.

    Then on Sunday, we started back toward Boise, so we went to Craters of the Moon and got to crawl around in some of the underground caves, which was really cool (literally). Then, we went to the Shoshone Ice Caves, which are on highway 75 north of Twin Falls. Since you would probably be coming up from Twin Falls on your way out to Arco and Idaho Falls, you could see that on your way out there. There's a terribly cheesy gift shop you have to wait in before the tour, but the cave is really interesting.
     
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  6. goneskiian

    goneskiian Active Member

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    Great stuff! Thanks Rocky! I was hoping you'd chime in.

    I remember seeing CROTM when I was a kid on a trip from Jackson out to California. We'd usually drive that route across before dropping down through Jackpot and the rest of Northern Nevada. I thought it would be fun to take my wife and also see it again as an adult. Thanks for the other tips too. I have been contemplating doing some car camping on this trip so we may bring the tent along too. Should be fun!
     
  7. Rocky_H

    Rocky_H Active Member

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    I thought it was great the four things we got to do all in a weekend that are nearby. There's an unfortunate catch-22 about the times of the year for seeing both EBR-1 and Craters of the Moon. The reactor is only open for tours during the summer. Touring around an area of black lava rock is not usually something that is pleasant to do in desert summer. ;) The first time we saw Craters, it was on the way back from camping with my father-in-law in Yellowstone, so we drove back through there. It was 106 degrees outside. It kind of sucked the fun out of it with baking sun from above and heat waves emanating up from the rock below. You'd look around for a few minutes and think, "OK, I want to get back in the air conditioned car now."

    We caught it at a pretty good time last year, where it was early summer, like first week or two of June, so it was only just about high 80's or just barely 90 and it was in the morning, so it wasn't too hot at Craters and we could still enjoy it. That nuclear reactor museum is really amazing, and I do highly recommend it.
     

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