After going into Yellowstone on Friday and being unable to find parking places, we decided to wait until after Labor Day and do other things in the meantime. On this day we drove south of the campground and made our first stop at Big Springs and Johnny Sack’s cabin.
Big Springs is a combination of several springs putting out 120 million gallons of clean 52* water every day and it is the source of Henry’s Fork (North Fork of the Snake River) – the springs will nearly furnish the needs of Phoenix, AZ. Because of its temperature and high flow rate, it never freezes and has pretty plants growing in it - looks like a Florida river.
The springs feed a nice pool that begins the river.
Downstream the river feeds Henry’s Lake about a mile from our campground.
In 1935, German emigrant Johnny Sack moved into the cabin he built at Big Springs and as a master craftsman, he also built everything from the furniture to the light fixtures.
Click on the link for an interesting read and photos of the cabin and the springs - here’s a couple of shots I lifted from the web.
Thanks to one of the springs location, he had a water wheel that pumped running water into the house (below and lower right in above shot).
Due to the river never freezing, Johnny had an air boat that he could use to go down river to civilization even in the dead of winter. With the beautiful cabin and magnificent location, I’d move in there today. The cabin is now owned by the USFS and is managed in conjunction with Fremont County Parks and Recreation and the Island Park Historical Society and during much of the summer a knowledgeable local representative is on site to answer questions.
From there we went a little further south and down river to have a look at the two Mesa Falls that are also on Henry’s Fork. The first shot is above the 110’ upper falls and the second is beside it.
Bev and the gorge below the upper falls.
This is the 85’ high lower falls.
After this trip I now know where most of the 4-wheelers are sold in the US – they are more than abundant here and trails seem to be everywhere. There must be a half dozen vehicles at our campground and many driven by older folks – this one belongs to our camping neighbor.
I assume the same folks have snowmobiles for the winter. On the way home, we spotted this heard of Pronghorn in a field beside the main road.
Photos best if enlarged by clicking on them.
Have a great day and thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.
9/2/2013 event date