On The Road To A Music & Harmonica Festival In Idaho With Traveling Musician Eric Stone
Where the heck is Yellow Pine?
Well, you drive 50 miles to the middle of nowhere and take a left.
But seriously, Yellow Pine historically served as the trade center for the larger basin mining areaknown as Stibnite. Discovered during the Thunder Mountain rush of the early 1900s, Stibnite became famous for its mercury, gold and tungsten ores.
In addition to mining real gold, they also find fools gold, aka Pyrite. The Midas Gold Corporation is now mining Pyrite, which contains minute particles of gold and can be separated mechanically.
There’s no easy way to get to Yellow Pine. From McCall, Idaho we drove in on the national forest service road known as the Southfork.
There are basically three ways to get into Yellow Pine: the Southfork, which takes longer but is paved most of the way; Johnson Creek Road, which has lots of hot springs and is shorter and unpaved; and Lick Creek Road, which is very steep and hair-raising with huge cliffs on both sides.
We made it into Yellow Pine on a beautiful, clear day. The sky was a deep blue and it was the start of the Yellow Pine Harmonica and Music Festival.
There were a lot of vendors on hand, including the National Forest Service, which was giving away coloring books, stickers and games featuring the beloved Smokey The Bear.
I was using my new GoPro 6 for the first time and I was not alone – a dog decided to do some filming of his own with a back-mounted GoPro.
Speaking of back mounted GoPros, how about a back-mounted dog in a backpack; you don’t see that everyday! Hi Bella and John!
In addition to music on the main stage, the two bars in town – The Corner Bar and the Yellow Pine Tavern – featured live music all day and night.
And I played, as well. Not quite officially, but there were so many people who stopped to check out Kim’s mom and stepdad Jim’s place because of all the wood carvings Jim has for sale, I decided it was great place to set up and play some live music.
My tip jar filled up quickly every set. It was a blast.
After I played they set up a nice set of appetiozers for the regular 5 o’clock happy hour.
We decided to take Lick Creek Road back even though Kim is deathly scared of cliffs. I was very proud of her. She did a great job driving while I filmed the My Tour Tales video. Kim drove off a cliff many years ago in a snow storm and broke her neck. She has every right to be fearful of driving along cliffs.
Along the way we stopped for a local treat, huckleberries. They grow wild on the side of the roads here. They have a sweet-tart taste and are used for everything form making pies to infusing vodka.
The drive back was beautiful ,including very expansive meadows often filled with deer and elk.
My Tour Tales is a regular blog post on the road from touring musician Eric Stone, who writes songs, sings and performs his music all over the world. He is currently in McCall, Idaho.
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