Arlington, OR to Nampa, ID (August 31, 2015)

This travelogue report covers my journey on Monday, August 31st, from my cousin’s farm near Arlington, OR to Nampa, Idaho. The following map shows my route for this day’s journey of 412 miles, thankfully under a beautiful sunny sky for the entire distance. Although a more direct route would have been shorter and faster, I wanted to ride through the Hells Canyon area near the Snake River.

My route from Arlington, OR to Nampa, ID

My route from Arlington, OR to Nampa, ID

After visiting Diane and Nick for three more nights during this summer’s tour, I thanked them again for their wonderful hospitality and departed around 8:30 AM PDT. Instead of riding down Blalock Canyon to I-84 as I had done so many times, I rode further east to OR-19 and then north to the town of Arlington. I had prepared a package to mail and wanted to visit the post office in Arlington. When I reached the town and found the post office still closed, I just continued eastward on I-84 to stop at another post office later.

These next two photos show view eastward along the Columbia River.

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When I reached the town of Boardman, I exited and easily found the post office to send off the package.

Just east of Boardman, my route branched off from I-84 onto US-730, which passes through Umatilla. Upon reaching the fork to OR-37, which has several nice curves, I followed it to the junction with OR-334. From there I continued along OR-334 through Athena and around Weston, where I branched off onto OR-204 to ride through the Umatilla National Forest as far as Elgin.

From there I continued along OR-82, which is part of the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway, through the small communities of Wallowa, Lostine, Enterprise, and Joseph. A short distance east of Elgin, I took these next two photos of the scenery.

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A short distance further, the road approaches the Wallowa River, shown in this next photo.


From Joseph I rode a short distance eastward along OR-350 to take the Wallowa Mountain Loop (FSR-39) through the Hells Canyon National Recreation Area. This next photo shows a view towards the south along the forest service road.


I continued along FSR-39 for another 45 minutes until reaching the turn-off to the Hells Canyon overlook on NF-3965. At one curve shortly after the turn-off, I pulled to the side to take several photos to create a panoramic wide-angle view of the scenery and a telescopic panoramic view of the middle section of that photo.

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Nearly two miles further along NF-3965, I arrived and parked at the Hells Canyon overlook. I took several photos around the overlook and of the scenery below.

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These next panoramic photos show several views from different locations at this overlook.


These next two panoramic photos show a continuous view from the northeast through east to the southeast.

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This next panoramic photo shows the view from another vantage point at this overlook.


There are several information panels at the overlook that explain the geology, history, and recreational opportunities of the Hells Canyon National Recreation Area. Please click on the images to read the small print. (The dark splotches were caused by spots inside my camera lens.)

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Across from the overlook where I parked, there is another kiosk with addition information of interest to visitors to the region, such as hikers.

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Upon departing from the overlook, I took this next photo of the curvy road back towards the main road.


After returning to the Wallowa Mountain Loop road, I resumed my journey southward and reached the junction with OR-86. There I turned eastward towards Oxbow on the western bank of the Snake River. I rode north along the Oregon side of the river a short distance before turning around. I stopped once to take this next photo of the view southward along the river.


Nearly 20 minutes later, as I was riding south along ID-71, I paused briefly alongside the Brownlee Reservoir formed by the Brownlee Dam to take these next photos of the dam, two historical markers, and the view southward overlooking the reservoir.

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I continued along ID-71 until reaching the junction with US-95 in the town of Cambridge, where I turned south and rode through the towns of Weiser, Payette, and Fruitland. Upon reaching I-84 just south of Fruitand, I followed it through Caldwell to Nampa.

Along the way I took this one last photo during this day’s ride, taken along US-95 midway between Cambridge and Weiser and showing the view across a valley towards the south.


At 6:22 PM MDT, I arrived at the Sleep-Inn motel in Nampa, where I had made a reservation using my Choice Hotel points for another free night. After checking in and following the clerk’s suggestion for a restaurant, I rode to the nearby Canyon Creek Restaurant, located next to the Shilo Inn on the other side of I-84.

That concludes this travelogue report for August 31st. The next day, I continued across Idaho into Wyoming. More about that day’s journey in my next report.


P.S. Note: As I prepared this travelogue report, I noticed several dark spots on several of my photos. I reduced them using an image editing program. Unfortunately the spots seem to be inside the camera lens and cannot be easily removed.

About Don

I'm a retired computer programmer who enjoys touring the country by motorcycle.
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