"Challis - In the Land of the Yankee Fork" Challis by 1bethp

Challis Travel Guide: 1 reviews and 3 photos

Not a Major Metropolitan Area!

Challis has only 909 inhabitants. There are no stop lights. There is no movie theater. There are only 4 restaurants - 2 of them in motels. There is a pizza parlor. There are 2 grocery stores. There is a bowling alley. There is an excellent sports store.

What else there is: beautiful scenery, great fishing, nice people, hot springs, RV parks, loads of mining history, river rafting. It's an outdoors kind of place, just a few miles from the highest mountains in Idaho.

Stop at the Land of the Yankee Fork Interpretive Center at the intersection of Hwys 75 and 93 - they have maps, guides, stories, weather info, slide shows, hunting regs... you name it. Plus displays of old mining equipment and stories of pioneers.

Land of the Yankee Fork

The area was settled back in the late 1800s when gold, silver and lead were discovered in the nearby hills and streams. The population exploded! Millions of dollars worth of minerals were dug up and shipped out.

The ghost town of Custer is about 35 miles from Challis up the old toll road - this was the supply route in the old days. You can also get to it from Hwy 75, which has a gorgeous scenic route along the Salmon River - turn north at Sunbeam and follow the Yankee Fork of the Salmon upstream about 5 miles.

Deer & Fish, Elk & Bear - oh, my - Mountain Lions

The Challis and Salmon River area is well-known for its hunting and fishing. There are a number of guide services to take you into the back country by horseback - at high altitudes, with lots of opportunity for coming back with a trophy animal.

River rafting is another terrific sport in the area - with or without guide services. You can kayak or run with a big raft. There are many services which will drop you off and pick you up along the Salmon River.

Just outside town on Hwy 75 you have a good chance of seeing bighorn sheep in the cliffs to the north.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Great outdoor area, gorgeous scenery, lots of history
  • Cons:Very small town, few amenities
  • In a nutshell:Challis is a great getaway spot.
  • Last visit to Challis: Jul 2007
  • Intro Updated Aug 2, 2007
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1bethp

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