On Saturday, July 6th, we took a train ride from Horseshoe Bend to Banks, Idaho. We rode on the Thunder Mountain Line train with our son Jake, his wife Becky, Becky's mom, Jake and Becky's friends and their parents, and our three youngest grandchildren. The train ride took 3 1/2 hours, and it included a melodrama and dinner. We had so much fun! It was the first time I had ever ridden on a train. And thanks to Becky's mom and dad, our granddaughter, Sophie, got to go with us!
Here are photos of Sophie with both Rick and I
Here is Lilly showing that she didn't want to have her picture taken
Lilly and Sophie
Our grandson Jackson (in the cowboy hat) and his best friend Hayden
Lilly and Hayden's little sister, Taylynn
Sophie enjoying the views
Some of the scenery next to the tracks
Once we got to the end of the line in Banks, Idaho and had our dinner, we panned for gem stones in the sluice. For $7.00, you got a bad of semi-precious stones mixed with sand and the kids were able to pan for their own treasures. All three loved this! Here is Jackson and our son Jake.
Sophie, panning for her gems
Lilly, helping Sophie
Here are Lilly and Jackson playing Woody and Jesse
Sophie as Jesse
On the ride home, we sat in the outside, uncovered car. We got to see lots of wonderful scenery, cows, horses and Sophie even spotted a deer. This is one of my favorite photos. Jackson wanted grandpa to wear his cowboy hat like he did.
This is the Payette River. The railroad tracks run right along it. People raft this river. All along the route, the rafters waved at us. Next summer, we plan on doing the Ride and Raft package, where you ride the train up and raft the river back down. I can't wait!
Here is an eagle nest that Rick and Sophie spotted on a telephone pole
Here is the view of the train coming around the bend on its way back to Horseshoe Bend from Banks
Pulling into the train yard at Horseshoe Bend
This was a really awesome experience that I hope we get to repeat with more of our children and our grandchildren in the years to come! If you are ever in Idaho, in the Treasure Valley, you ought to look into this tour. The ride is amazing, and the staff and actors on the train are awesome.
Have a great day!