In 1804 when Thomas Jefferson tasked Meriwether Lewis and William Clark to explore lands west of the Mississippi River (that comprised the Louisiana Purchase) a two year excursion began. Even before negotiations with France were finished, Jefferson asked Congress to finance an expedition to survey the lands of the Louisiana Purchase and appointed Lewis as expedition commander. Along the way they encountered harsh weather, unforgiving terrain, treacherous waters, injuries, starvation, disease, and both friendly and hostile Native Americans.
Nevertheless, the approximately 8,000 mile journey was deemed a huge success and provided new geographic, ecological, and social information about previously uncharted areas of North America.
Part of their trail meandered through the state of Idaho. I had no idea that there was actually two townships dedicated to these famous explorers. One town is called Lewiston, located in Idaho near Moscow Idaho. The other is just across the river named Clarkston, located in Washington.
Fast forward to my thoughts regarding Idaho:
1. I loved the fact that Idaho boasted friendly people (and not a lot of them).
2. I had heard Idaho was beautiful with lots of affordable, available land.
3. The most important aspect was water. I wanted to live in a place that had lots of water as I believe that water will be like gold to most people in the next 50 years.
4. I wanted to live in a place, secluded, but close to medical facilities.
5. I wanted to see the stars... a simple request not possible in Las Vegas.
With limited knowledge but a clear vision of what I wanted I began the process of discovery. I knew I wanted to live in the northern part of Idaho somewhere between Sand Point and Boise. Another requirement was a view of some type of water (Lake, Stream, River, Pond, etc.).
The beginning stage of my discovery took me to some of the most marvelous, stunning, incredible places I had ever seen. Sand Point and the Priest River near Coeur d'Alene are simply magical. However, those places were a little too far north. I didn't want to have to deal with snow after having lived in Tahoe. Digging out of a place I have no intention of skiing too, from, on, or near is simply not going to happen.
And so I traveled south down the 95 towards Potlatch. Potlatch was one of the largest lumber companies in the world founded in 1903. They now have diversified and primarily are selling their land once covered in forest for harvest. I looked to the north of Moscow Idaho and East but couldn't find land that overlooked water in a place that was close to electricity and phone. The realtor in Potlatch recommended a gentleman named Russ Martin (also a realtor) located in Lewiston Idaho.
Russ introduced Nancy and I to the Clearwater River meandering next to highway 12 which goes all the way to Montana. Along the way bouncing in and out of many different small towns with land for sale, is a little known town, Orofino (meaning "fine gold"). Up the grade from Orofino is a small development called Tie Creek, or as the natives call it "Tie Crick", over looking the Dworshak Dam. I also liked this area because it is in a "banana belt" with temperatures about 20 degrees warmer than other cities and townships around it.
As soon as I saw the land I knew this would be the place to build our dream home to eventually retire to. Our home will overlook the Dam, the Dam trees, the Dam water, knowing full well that your damed if you do and damed if you don't. So why not go for it!
I'll leave you with this one final thought... "If the dream is big enough... the facts don't count".
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