March 15th, 1984 - For 28 Days the Moss Man Lived in Frenchman's Bend Hot Springs near Hailey Idaho

The man, the legend, the festival...

I thought I'd heard it all - hot springs wise that is. Then, I stumbled upon this blog posting regarding a transient man who got drunk one night in Frenchman's Bend Hot Springs and woke up the next morning to find his clothes frozen. He remained at the Hot Springs because of stubbornness (and possibly because he was on drugs) for 28 days until he was found with moss growing on his back by cross-country skiers. Now there's a festival named after the guy.

Article Links:

Lean, Green, and Amazingly Serene
by Outside Magazine, March 1997

Perry's Ramble: Moss Man (blog posting)
Sept. 27th, 2005

Here's Your Chance to Make a Difference! Take Action Now!

Current Action Items:

Idaho Senator Larry Craig Serves on the Committee Responsible for Maintaining the Horse Slaughter Ban (slaughtering horses for foreign consumption)
Urge Larry Craig to Support the Ban Even Though He Opposed it to Begin With >

Pets Were Not Included in Katrina's Disaster Relief Plan Despite Protests to Bush Co
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ExxonMobil is Funding Companies that Produce Disinformation to Confuse the Public About Global Warming
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Cruel Japanese Dolphin Hunt Reaps Benefits for Few
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Endangered Species Act in Danger from Wildlife Extinction Bill
Stop the Wildlife extinction Bill - The Endangered Species Act is at Stake >

Critical Vote for Wildlife Extinction Bill Approaching
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Protect Our Native Ecosystems from the Snakehead Fish - Destroyer of Fish & Aquatic Life
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Visit NDRC & Take Even More Action
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Mysterious System of Towering Hot Springs in Atlantic Ocean Revisited

Scientists think that an underwater system of hot springs located deep in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean may reveal information about how life evolved. They are calling the thermal vents the "Lost City" because of how the towering hot springs look like a forest.

Click here to read about this summer's expedition to the Lost City >

Skinnydipper (MM4) Hot Springs in Idaho Revisited

Great soaking at Skinny this morning; the top pool is still out of commission but the lower, other 2 are in good shape despite some broken plumbing. Almost no trash save for a ton of cig butts the last couple visits, at least it's improving! My trash loads are getting smaller and smaller every time I visit. There's talk of organizing a volunteer day coming up; the path needs some work as do the pools. I'll post more to the blog as info. becomes available.

There was a single guy soaking in the party pool upon our early arrival. After about an hour or so a couple, their friend and 2 dogs came up. Everyone seemed pretty friendly. Luckily we like dogs, because theirs ran up and jumped right into the pool and ran wild. This is somewhat of a sore spot with me, especially being a dog owner myself. I just don't understand why people can't leash their dogs... it's really as simple as that. If your dog fights, leave him/her in the vehicle or at home, if they can't stay close and obey commands do the same. The rare times I take my dogs to hot springs they are on leash, and I don't take them to popular hot springs.
Rating: A

New Picture Added to Skinnydipper Hot Springs in Idaho

New Skinnydipper Picture:

Sunrise @ Skinnydipper

Happy Soaking!

Take Action Now! Endangered Species Act Under Attack!

California Congressman Richard Pombo's "extinction bill" is moving forward -- and it's just as bad as we feared. The bill is a nightmare for threatened and endangered species, and ignores the 90 percent of Americans who care about protecting them. One provision states that the government must either allow people to kill endangered species, or force taxpayers to pay them not to break the law. Think that's outrageous? Another provision would end all critical habitat protection for the forests, beaches, meadows, and other places they need to survive and recover. And that's just the beginning!

The Endangered Species Act is a safety net that protects wildlife, fish, and plants on the brink of extinction. When President Richard Nixon signed the Endangered Species Act in 1973, he said "Nothing is more priceless and more worthy of preservation than the rich array of animal life with which our country has been blessed."

The Endangered Species Act works. Over the past three decades, the Endangered Species Act has saved species like the bald eagle, Florida manatee, and key deer from extinction. If Representative Pombo's bill had been law 31 years ago, not even the bald eagle would have qualified for listing.

Let's stop this bill in its tracks! Use the links below to tell your Representative to stand up for our endangered animals by voting against the so-called "Threatened and Endangered Species Recovery Act of 2005".

Take Action Now >

Tell Your Friends >

US Horses Saved from Slaughter for Foreign Consumption, No Thanks to Idaho Senators

The Senate voted on September 20th, 2005 to pass the Ensign-Byrd Amendment to the Senate Agriculture Appropriations Bill effectively banning the slaughter of horses for fiscal year 2006!

This is indeed a great victory for horses that are sold for slaughter for Asian consumption.

Unfortunately; both of Idaho Senators opposed the Ensign-Byrd Amendment.

Here's your chance to find out why Mike Crapo and Larry Craig are for slaughtering horses (including Idaho's wild horses) for consumption in Asia.

Please use the info. below to contact Idaho's Senators:

Michael 'Mike' D. Crapo - (202) 224-6142
Larry E. Craig - (202) 224-2752

As an Idaho resident I find myself continually outraged by the actions of our representation. In fact, most of us live in Idaho because of the beautiful public and protected wilderness lands that exist here. It sickens me that time and time again our land, animals and rights are constantly being undermined by the politicians we selected to protect such things.

Don't be shy, give these guys a call. They're politicians; if enough people make noise they will alter their stance out of fear of losing the voting support of the public.

Happy Soaking!

Skinnydipper Hot Springs in Idaho Revisited


I wasn't sure what to expect after receiving multiple reports this summer describing vandalism, pool and pipe destruction and some other items too gross to mention. We (myself and hot springing partner Andrew Nelson of National Geographic Traveler) arrived mid-day to a shockingly near-empty parking area. Keeper Matt was on-hand, and told me that he's been carting trash, broken pipe and more out the last 3 days. He also mentioned that just the other night 3 vehicles got their windows busted out. Despite all of the carnage the place looked great, and you can thank the Keepers for that.

Matt, Harley and Ken are the main Keepers or 'Friends of Skinnydipper' that I know about. I am a Keeper as well, but don't frequent Skinny nearly as often as the others. It should be known that we are in search of additional Keepers - Skinnydipper needs some help and stewardship. If you are interested, talk to one of the Keepers or myself. Your best bet to catch a Keeper is to visit mid-morning on the weekend or contact me.

The soft, hot water felt oh soooo great! Matt had been hard at work jury-rigging the damaged plumbing a week or so ago and had just gotten things up and running shortly before we arrived. He mentioned that the pipes are just barley holding together, and that any messing with them wouldn't be good. There's really no need to mess with the pipes anyway - each pool has a hot and cold water inflow pipe that is adjustable. There is no reason to climb up to the top and make adjustments there.

I was glad to see that Andrew really enjoyed the whole hot springs experience. The biggest downer I felt was the large heart graffiti above the second pool from the bottom.
Rating: A

Boise, in Hot Water - Literally!

This informative article from digs into a little of Boise's history with geothermal power.

There's also mention of the City of Boise's commercial hot springs of the past; the Natatorium - last seen: 1930 (!) I've long heard the legend of a hot springs used by the locals, both commercial and non-commercial.

One thing that bugs me about the article is the declaration of hot springs as a 'renewable' source of energy. Here's my problem; we all know that farmers that use aquifers for irrigation have depleted hot springs near Bruneau, Idaho and many other places. The farmers tapped into geothermal wells and drained them dry irrigating their fields. In Bruneau's case, this was also responsible for adding the Hot Springs Snail to the endangered species list.

Another consideration needs to be given to the fact that 90% of hot water (in the NW) is the result of left-over energy from a meteor collision in SE Oregon - the energy super-heats the water in fault lines and send it towards the surface. This would seem non-renewable to me, unless the water in the fault lines is supplied by a renewable water source. That leaves the other 10%, hot water from volcanic activity. Again this would only be renewable if the water source is.

Happy Soaking!

New Wilderness Vagabond Trip Report - Salmon Sojourn

The Vagabond is at it again!

The Salmon Sojourn trip report is about the two months Rob and Kathleen volunteered for the FS at the Little Creek Guard Station on the Middle Fork of the Salmon River (near river mile 35) in Idaho.

This very large trip report is chalk full of vital information for anyone interested in our public lands and is also sprinkled with interrelated, thought provoking quotes and scenic pictures.

Read the Salmon Sojourn!

View Animal Rescue Efforts Slideshow Footage from Katrina's Wake

Click on the pic below to view a moving slideshow of volunteers and rescue workers in action during the aftermath of hurricane Katrina.

Help Pets Hurt by Hurricane Katrina >
Please donate to the Humane Society Disaster Rescue Teams

Urge Your Senator to Vote YES on the Ensign-Byrd Amendment to End Horse Slaughter!

I thought you might be interested in this HSUS and ASPCA campaign to protect horses from slaughter. We don't eat horsemeat here, but tens of thousands of American horses are shipped under inhumane conditions and suffer a terrible fate at one of three foreign-owned slaughterhouses in the U.S. Former show horses, thoroughbreds, ponies, foals, wild horses, pregnant mares from the Premarin industry, and any other kind of horse you can imagine, are put through this brutal process all so that their meat can be shipped overseas to foreign markets for diners in Europe and Asia.

This isn't how we want our horses treated and now we have a chance to stop it. We expect a vote to happen in the Senate early this week that could ban this terrible practice. Please ask your two U.S. Senators to support the Ensign-Byrd Agriculture Appropriations amendment to prevent tax dollars from being used to allow horse slaughter. The vote is coming quickly so please don't delay. Click here and take action now!

Contact your senator now to urge him or her to support the Ensign-Byrd Amendment to the Senate Agriculture Appropriations Bill, which would ensure that no federal tax dollars are used to slaughter horses! Click here to send an email and make a phone call today to tell your U.S. senator to vote YES on the Ensign-Byrd Amendment!

Idaho Senator Information:

Michael 'Mike' D. Crapo - (202) 224-6142
Larry E. Craig - (202) 224-2752

Backpacking Trip to Secesh Hot Springs in Idaho


Secesh Hot Springs

General Description
Secesh Hot Springs lies way above the Secesh River and requires a quarter mile, near vertical hike to reach after fording the Secesh River. Hot water from the source flows directly into the top pool. The outflow from the top pool and two other smaller sources fill the next pool below. The 3rd pool from the top (just below the 2nd) isn't warm or deep enough for a soak. The last and lowest pool; located all the way down by the Secesh River features frigid, stagnant water. Something remarkable to note: the hot springs water is among the softest I have ever experienced - my skin felt amazing after soaking, not dry at all. It should also be noted that the infamous Red Spider Mites inhabit this hot springs as well. Please tread lightly as this area is heavily impacted due to the nearby popular Loon Lake loop hike, bike or motorbike.

Secesh River & Lowest Pool

Pool Condition
All pools feature rock walls, gravel and rock bottoms and are at most 3 feet deep and 6-8 feet wide. They will require revamping and cleaning upon arrival because of their low use. We used the tarps left in the pools (we removed the tarps upon arrival, cleaned the pools, preformed light patch work on the rock walls, then replaced the tarps before soaking) and removed them again before leaving. Please always remove tarps or plastic when leaving the hot springs. The pools were full of algae and goobers due to low usage.

Hot Soak

Seasonal Notes
Fording the Secesh River limits access to this hot springs until late summer, usually starting mid to late July until the snow falls (anytime between Sept.-Nov.). Winter access could be possible with a snowmobile (to the TH) and snowshoes to the hot springs; but fording the river would prove crazy this time of year.

Loon Lake

Camping Notes
There's 1 fairly large and semi-flat, grassy campsite next to the river way below the hot springs. There is no camping up-top near the hot springs: no open or remotely flat space. Please use the existing primitive camp; there's no need to create another campsite. There are other primitive camping opportunities near and at Loon Lake and at the trailhead campground.

B-23 Dragon Bomber (rear)


09.03.05 - 09.05.05
Our 3-day backpacking trip to Secesh Hot Springs was a blast! In addition to the hot springs, we also hiked out and around Loon Lake among the horde of day hikers, mountain bikers and motorbikes to the wreckage of a downed WWII B-23 Dragon Bomber that crashed on January 29, 1943. Everyone survived the crash and following ordeal - according to the historical sign; which didn't help the credibility of my (made up) ghost story of the Bomber crew walking the trails at night.

After fording the Secesh River we left the crowds behind, our packs at the primitive campsite and headed up the steep mountain side to the hot springs. That was quite a hike; much more difficult than the 4 mile hike in. The near vertical hike is a maze of faint trails blocked by downed trees and slides. We cleaned up the algae and goober laden pools and enjoyed many grade A, perfect temperature soaks. A slight detraction was the presence of Red Spider Mites.
Rating A-

B-23 Dragon Bomber (front)

Another Increase in Gas Prices & Oil Dependence on the Way

Bush Co. has announced plans that will increase:

Global Warming Conditions
Our Dependence on Oil
Gas Prices

I know I know - big surprise - but here's your chance to do something about it!

Click here to learn more >

Don't forget to tell your family and friends - as always, Happy Soaking

ExxonMobil is Posting Record Profits - Join the Resistance at!

On July 28th ExxonMobil announced a record-breaking 2nd-quarter profit of $7.84 billion! Is Exxon using that windfall to invest in more affordable energy alternatives? No! ExxonMobil has decided that it benefits from America's dependence on oil and it's fighting tooth and nail to maintain the status quo. (Source: SierraClub)

Educate & Activate @ >

ID Representatives Score Whopping Zero on Humane Society Scorecard

The humane Society has just published their Humane Scorecard for the 108th Congress. It's good to see many state Representatives continue to 'fight the good fight', so to speak.

Check out the Scorecard to see how your state Representatives ranked >

Big surprise, both Idaho Republican Representatives did not support the Animal Fighting Felony, Downers (in relation to protecting animals and humans from mad cow), said nothing of the Canadian Seal Hunt and were for drilling into the Alaskan National Wildlife Refuge.

They collectively scored a whopping "0" (zero) on the Humane Society Scorecard.

Contact Your Representatives > Find out why they did or did not support a Humane Scorecard item. Better yet; thank the ones that did.

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Please donate to the Humane Society Disaster Rescue Teams
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