History of the Salmon - White waterLook no further for your summer adventure plan! Holiday River Expeditions offers two spectacular tours on “The River of No Return”–Idaho’s Salmon River, flowing through two and a half million acres of the Frank Church Wilderness Area in Idaho. This is the second-largest protected area in the lower 48, making it a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, hunters, and anglers. There is no better option for the city-weary individual or family who wants to get away and explore the snow-fed rivers of this alpine paradise and camp on its white sandy beaches and breathe in the fragrance of the dense pine forests.

The Main Salmon River Rafting trip offers 40 solid class IV white water rapids every day and folks enjoy the natural beauty of this mountainous terrain with constant opportunities for wildlife viewing, including deer, bear, river otters, birds-of-prey, elk, and bighorn sheep.

Four breathtaking canyons – Green, Cougar, Snowhole, and Blue –highlight the Lower Salmon River Rafting tour.History of the Salmon - boaters These sheer canyons and rolling mountains are nestled amid Idaho’s wilderness. This excursion merges the Salmon River into the Snake River for the last 20 miles, making this exciting adventure an Idaho experience of a lifetime.

So how did this part of the US stay wild all these years? The history of this area is best stated by the Middle Fork of the Salmon Rafting website which says:

“This piece of land was not always known as the Frank Church Wilderness Area. In 1931, a little more than one million acres in Idaho was set-aside by the Forest Service and called the “Idaho Primitive Area.” In 1980, the Idaho Primitive Area, Salmon River Breaks Primitive Area, and a portion of the Magruder Corridor were combined to create the “River of No Return Wilderness Area.”

Frank Church was an Idaho senator who was the floor sponsor for the Wilderness Act of 1964. It passed and protected nine million acres as a designated wilderness area. In 1968, Frank Church introduced the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. Two of the original rivers protected under this important Act are the Middle Fork of the Salmon and Main Salmon rivers.

In March of 1984, Congress honored Frank Church by renaming the areas as the “Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness Area.” Frank Church died a few weeks later, but not before seeing the fruit of all his hard work.” (Source: http://www.middleforksalmon.org/frank_church.html)

Long ago, familial Native-American tribal villages sparsely dotted this area. The Karuk Tribe is thought to have inhabited these lands for more than 10,000 years. The 1820s brought a surge of Europeans to the area, mostly hunters and trappers employed by the Hudson Bay Company as fur traders, just passing through on their way to Oregon. With the gold rush of the 1850s, white men soon took up residency in the area. Today, Idaho is known as “The Gem State” and for its’ famous potatoes is a first-class choice for anyone who to get as far away from the hustle and bustle of our modern life.