Sunday, November 16, 2014

Part 2 of Selway elk trapping

"Your mother and I have been talking," my father said at the breakfast table, "we don't think you should go alone. How about asking that Walters boy to go with you? We have already talked to his parents about it."
Dave Walters, Lois Walters little brother- he is two years younger than me, I thought as my father continued to explain that his parents were in agreement.  The plans were agrees upon by all and while Dave and I prepared ourselves our parents worked out the details. David and I had very little interactions which worked well for me.

A day after school let out was the day selected, we followed the plan;  following a prayer and bidding farewell to my parents I drove the 3 miles to the Walters, received a helping of positive concern from Clyde and Louise as they too said their goodbyes. We left town in my parents 1958 Chevrolet sedan around 3:00 am. I had the marked maps and my senses were sharpened by fear and excitement. The early morning darkness added to the adventure. We drove toward Idaho Falls and pulled onto interstate 15, northbound. Twenty-five miles later we took the Salmon exit. Another twenty miles and I was in country I had never been before in my entire life. David and I talked only minimally-conferring upon the correct route and otherwise silent, too shy to converse.

On we drove in the dark. We found ourselves traveling on a straight road that coursed between two mountain ranges. This was easy! No traffic at this hour and hardly any turns. My eyes bounced routinely from the dashboard gages to the mirrors and back to the road. Occasionally as an oncoming vehicle would approach I would stomp around and find the dimmer switch before they would flash me a reminder. I felt more comfortable in the wider and open valley to have my lights on bright because I was worried about pronghorn or deer. About 90 miles from home as I was approaching Gilmore summit, I noticed headlights approaching me from behind.  I was watching my speed and stayed at 55 mph which was the night time speed limit. I was ill at ease with the lights coming up behind me and was pleased when the vehicle finally passed me. The truck continued on until it was about 500 yards I front of me. When the brake lights came on, I was confused and the truck came to a stop directly in front of me. Dave and I shot glances at each other, "maybe he needs help," I said. We pulled to a stop behind the truck and out stepped the driver with a club in his hand. He stiffly approached us and I rolled down my window and leaned out my head. The truck driver stopped at the front of the car, raised his club and bellowed, "dim your (blankety blank) lights or I will dim them for you!!!" " Oh I am sorry" I stammered and madly tried to hurry and dim the high beams. My feet were occupied: one on the brake and the other one on the clutch-

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Selway elk trapping

Steve has hundreds of stories about his experiences in the outdoors, he is finally sitting down long enough to get them on paper and I will do my part and get them on the web, so here goes:

It was late April or Early May of 1968
Lewis Gifford had been hired by my father of help us with some ditch work in preparation for the irrigation season. It was my job to assist Lewis. We found our place working as a team, I was 17 years old and had known Lewis since I was a 12 year old scout- Lewis was the assistant scout master. I had grown to appreciate Lewis' quiet nature and this gave me a chance to share some stories as we worked together on a quiet Spring morning. My shovel scooped up the shorn off chunks of sod and loosened soil and I rhythmically placed them atop the bank of the ditch. We were talking about Lewis' upcoming job of working for the Idaho Department of Fish and Game; trapping elk in the Selway wilderness. Since he had the same job the previous year and the time was drawing near when he would have to leave town, I took advantage of questioning him about what it was like and what he expected to experience this year.

Lewis paused his shoveling and I continued and caught up with him, we both stopped shoveling, he spoke, "your father and I have been talking and we both think that it would be good for you to come to the Selway and join me for a week as soon as school is out."  I watched one of the chunks of sod roll down the ditch bank and land atop some emerging barley- backlit in the morning sun, my thoughts began to race.... And I saw myself entering into Lewis' story in a remote part of  central Idaho's wilderness.

I leaned on my shovel and listened: "you could get an early start, 3 am on the appointed day, I will mark a map where Guedney Creek campground is and I will meet you at noon" he went on to tell me that it would be a long drive for me and a 4 mile hike down the mountain for him. He told me I would need a backpack, a sleeping bag and some food along with enough clothing for the week. "I think you will like it " he suggested.

Our conversation moved on as we took up shoveling and my new found delight kept pace. Because of this day Shoveling ditch would never be the same. By the time our job was completed and Lewis had gone home, I went back and the wayward chunks of sod from the emerging barley filled with anticipation- those tiny barley plants and I were going to grow!

Lewis left for the Selway and plans were made for me to join him. It was my first road trip. I had avoided driving due to the fact that my brother Brent and I had been in a near fatal accident and sustained significant injuries when a drunk driver ran a stop sign and the motorcycle we were on slammed into his vehicle. I found it difficult to even desire to drive around town let alone a long trip to a place I had never been. This would be 10 hours and would require  me to meet Lewis at a place where I had never been. I was motivated though and my parents came up with a plan that I went along with.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Beginning Anew

Spring is here and a good time for beginnings, Steve continues to paint and has been writing stories about his experiences in the outdoors in the hopes of someday publishing a book. We will be posting excerpts from his stories on the blog as well as recent paintings he has completed.
We also want people to be aware that Steve has his recent works hanging in his home studio gallery and on the last friday of the month we will be holding an open house where all are welcome to stop by and see his work and talk with him, from 6 to 9 pm.

Please call and let us know you are coming 208-522-5539

Wood's Farm House

Wood's Farm House

Water color painting that Steve did of Forest Wood's farm house, how it looked many years ago.
This was painted this winter commissioned by Carol Whitehead.

Plein Aire painting in the Ruby Mountains near Elko Nevada

Monday, June 10, 2013

Steve Spencer continues to paint

Steve's blogspot  has been inactive due to some computer glitches and my(Wendy's ) lack of computer savvy but with the help of my dear niece we have access now and plan to post Steve's newest works here and keep everyone up to date on Steve's artistic ventures, hopefully we will get him to write about his experiences in the creative process. He painted through the winter and has some wonderful scenes on canvas from the information he gathered during his trip to Alaska last summer.