Kepp’s Crossing Overlook Slope Site
Cory sent in this great report on a slope soaring spot in Southeast Idaho. He says Idaho Falls is at the eastern end of the Snake River Plain. This plain is oriented generally in line with the jet stream in spring and fall, which helps produce our winds.
Southeast Idaho has a reputation amongst its residents for being pretty windy. I’ve lived here for 29 years and always thought so too, that is until I took up slope flying in the early 90’s. Sometimes it seems like the wind only blows when all of my planes need repairs. Murphy must have been a sloper! Seriously, I once knew someone who moved here from “The Windy City” who claimed that Chicago was calm compared to here.
Idaho Falls is at the eastern end of the Snake River Plain. This plain is oriented generally in line with the jet stream in spring and fall, which helps produce our winds. Unfortunately, most of the steeper slopes in our area do not face the prevailing wind direction of SSW. Fortunately there are several exceptions. I will submit descriptions of these sites as I fly them this spring.
|This part of the cliff makes the best lift.
David sent in this report. He is in Rexburg, in eastern Idaho. North of Idaho Falls.
Here is his report on a nice slope on public (BLM) land. It’s a bit of a trek on unmaintained dirt roads, so you’ll need a vehicle with good ground clearance. I go in my Chevy Astro van, but I bottom out sometimes. Better in a truck.
|photo by Lynn Johnson
The slope has very nice south/southwest exposure, which is in the direction of the prevailing winds. There is also an adjacent bowl, from which you could do anything from straight west, through south, to right east. No northern exposure.
These are locations we have had the privilege to fly. Some may have access restrictions.
Check with local flyers for information.
Idaho Slope Flying Sites
A special thanks to Mike for his descriptions on this site.
The land-owner of this site has developed the only suitable landing area which makes it suitable for foamie only, or planes which might tolerate rough landing. For the most part this wonderful site lost.
I fly slope almost exclusively as there is a very good one just 15 minutes from my home which is 20 miles west of Boise. I would be happy to direct you and others to the local slope. As I often fly alone there, the company would be appreciated.
“Freeze-Out Hill” is approximately 25 miles NW of Boise on the road to Emmett, ID.
Directions from Boise:
Take Hwy 44 (State Street) west from Boise, through Eagle and toward Star. Turn North on Hwy 16 (Emmett Hwy) at the intersection about 6 miles west of Eagle. Drive approximately 12 miles north (past Firebird Raceway on left) to a cross road with sign to “Pearl”. (If you start down the ravine into the Emmett Valley then you’ve gone to far.) Turn Left onto what is “Old Freeze Out Road”. About 100 yards up the road is a dirt trail which Y’s off to the right. Take this rough trail up the hill to the top (~ 0.3 mile). A regular car will make it easily with care. Continue on to the north and down to the right to a flat area facing NW (~0.2 mile). Park near the bigger sage brush on the shallow down slope to the right (this is the “landing” area so stay near the brush). The slope consists of a north bowl and a south bowl with a small central ridge. West to NW winds are best. Conditions worsen as winds get more northerly but may be flyable. (Note: conditions at the slope are not always the same as those in the Boise Valley.) Launch off the flat area over the central ridge. In a stronger wind (15-20+ mph) this is a great to awesome place to fly. In light winds conditions are difficult to predict and we often fly HLG and floaters. Please note this is private land and the area should be treated with respect. Take all your trash out and kindly pick up after others not as thoughtful.