View Full Version : Palouse Falls country area ranch day trip

12-19-2011, 04:04 PM
This last Saturday, my friend Mike and I went on a day trip to a ranch in the Palouse country. Mike got permission for us from the ranch owner so we could head past the skull and crossbones KEEP OUT signs they have everywhere, and not get shot at.

We stopped and talked to a ranch hand on the first stop at the bottom of a big canyon. He was working on a tractor in a shop. He kept whacking tennis balls out into the sagebrush for his Australian Shepherd to chase after, which was neat. The dog ran miles and never got tired. He told us about an old one-room schoolhouse in another direction from what we planned, so we had to check that out first. :)

On the way, we ran across the largest mule deer herd I've ever seen. There we at least 50 in that herd. They weren't too worried about us either. I took the photo where they're crossing the road thru the windshield. The object at the bottom is my GPS.

After that, we headed to the Columbia River. We ended up in a greenery zone that's managed by the state as a wildlife habitat. We felt like we were in the show "Off Limits" just to be there, as normally you can only get there via boat.

After maybe 15 miles of ranch road explorations, we popped out and headed to Palouse Falls. As you can see, there's lots of ice.

We're being watched.

Outside my side window.

Deer X-ing

The old school house.


12-19-2011, 04:10 PM
The Jeep sitting in the fog behind the school.


A 2 foot tall "stalagmite" of poo. There were some seriously big nests in the rafters!

This posted gate is already past a couple of no trespassing gates. This road leads to the river.

And onwards past the gate. The drop-off is the Columbia River.

Yet another gate. We headed down a steep hill to the river itself from here.


12-19-2011, 04:14 PM
Still on top, before heading down. This is looking west.

This road is seldom used. The weeds are higher than the Jeep's grill. It took faith that there was even ground there, and not river.

An old boat ramp in an inlet in the habitat area.

A semi-froze Palouse Falls, after we exited the ranch land. We had to see it as it was on the way home. The falls are about 200' high.

12-19-2011, 05:01 PM
That's pretty cool the ranch owner gave you permission to explore his land

12-19-2011, 05:07 PM
Beautiful! Thanks for sharing.

12-19-2011, 05:47 PM
Nice looking pictures! I'd love to find old buildings like that.

12-20-2011, 04:10 AM
Great pics!

12-20-2011, 05:29 AM
Thanks for sharing.

Holaday07 4.7
12-20-2011, 05:49 AM
Very cool, that is awesome he let you on the land too

12-20-2011, 05:55 AM
wonderful photos.

12-20-2011, 06:01 AM
that is some cool stuff. Thanks for the pics

12-20-2011, 09:17 AM
Very nice...thanks for sharing.

12-20-2011, 09:50 AM
It was an interesting day to say the least. We headed back at 4 pm, then hit the thickest fog I've ever driven in, ever. We were crawling at 20 MPH for miles. The GPS was a god send, but even with that, I could see a road we needed to turn on, (on its screen) but outside the windows we couldn't see 20 feet. The road sign would loom out of the almost opaque stuff, and I'd turn REAL SLOW so we didn't drop off the edge. It took 2.5 hours to drive home, where normally, it's maybe 45 minutes away. The dark didn't help, and had we known it was going to settle in, we'd have headed back in the daylight. Also, we kept to back roads rather than heading back on the main highway in that stuff. (People tend to drive like fools in heavy fog)

We've explored the ranch family's land before. There are two more sets of falls above Palouse Falls, that's off limits to the public. There's also a couple of lakes we've seen. We'd never gone this direction before though.

This next weekend, (Christmas) probably on Friday, we're heading for deep snow. Don't know yet if it'll be west, east, north, or south. :) We'll look at maps while we eat B'fast and tank up on coffee in Andy's restaurant.