Quiet Country Drives
The Bone Store sits in Bone, Idaho, 17 miles down the Bone Road. (Yes, there was a Mr. Bone, Mr. Orion Bone the town founder in the early 1900’s.)
Bone is in the boonies. It was the last town in Idaho to receive telephone service. In 2006, it had a year around population of 2. It has probably doubled in population since then. I hear the Bone Store serves dinner weekend evenings.
We had never been to Gray’s Lake. There is a national wildlife refuge there and it’s not too far from where we live so we decided that ought to be a fall drive, at least see the refuge, while the color was still on the trees.
MapQuest said that it was less than a two-hour drive from where we live. Take the first left past the Bone Store. It said traffic would be light on a good gravel road. We loaded the car with goodies, extra water, and emergency gear.
Unless you count all the cows in the road, the traffic was light—I think it was over an hour before we saw our first vehicle. The road is more suited for a pickup than a passenger car but it was passable for either. Make sure your gas tank is full.
It was a delightful drive with fall colors and beautiful vistas and an occasional deer. The refuge is pretty lonely with a few high-country ranchers living in the area. We came back through Freedom, Wyoming, and down Star Valley. Freedom is a big town, about 214 people in the 2010 census, with its own church.
This is my favorite time of year, September and early October. I love the cooler weather, the crisp bite in the mornings. I love the mountains in the fall, the medley of bright colors in the forests, the deeper blue sky that seems to go forever, the earthy smells of fallen leaves, and the crunch of dry leaves underfoot. I love the crystal clear waters of gentle streams after the water has dropped in the fall with their quiet babble as they find their way over smooth stones. It’s my favorite time for hikes and picnics in the woods.
We have an article on our site, “The Last Picnic of Fall,” that’s worth reading. Here’s some advice found in that article.
If you want to make it a picnic, our picnic checklist will assure that we don’t forget anything. Your checklist will be little different than the summer’s list. Make sure that you have warm jackets just in case the weather changes. On our trip through Bone, we had blankets and extra water. Add hats in case of a chilly wind. We always have matches even in the car. Binoculars and a camera will give you the opportunity to capture those mallards in fall plumage or maybe a moose with his antlers stained red from his recently shed velvet.”
Stash a lunch in a cooler in the trunk. Merri Ann is gluten-free, celiac, so we don’t pack sandwiches. Consider salads: A green salad with slices of chicken, a potato salad, or a fruit salad.
Take plenty of snacks. We’re partial to Rice Krispy® Treats but they won’t be ordinary treats. We’ll add chocolate or nuts or maybe a jar of jam to make—maybe Marionberry White Chocolate Treats since Merri Ann likes those.
With luck, your weather will be perfect and it’ll be the most beautiful drive of the year.
This is simply Rice Krispie Treats with added white chocolate chips and dry cranberries. The white chocolate melts into the marshmallow mixture and makes for a much richer and very attractive bar. This is very suitable for guests. It is nearly as simple as the original recipe.
Look for white chocolate chips made with cocoa butter instead of vegetable or coconut oil.
4 tablespoons butter
4 cups miniature marshmallows
1/2 tablespoon good quality vanilla
1 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
6 cups Kellogg’s Rice Krispie cereal or equal
3/4 cup dry cranberries
Butter a 9 x 13-inch baking pan.
- In a large pan on the stovetop, melt the butter over low heat. Add the marshmallows. Stir until the mixture is melted, hot, and smooth. Add the vanilla.
- Add the white chocolate chips, rice cereal, and cranberries. Stir until the cereal is uniformly combined with the marshmallow mixture.
- Remove the mixture to the buttered pan. Evenly distribute the mixture and press it down into the pan with buttered fingers, a piece of waxed paper, or a spatula. Let cool and cut into squares.
Baker’s notes: The white chocolate chips will melt in the hot marshmallow mixture.
If you use a large enough pan, you can mix the treats right in the pan, not in a bowl. The hot pan makes it a little easier to stir the mixture together and there is less clean-up.
Rice Krispie Treats are best eaten the same day.
Marionberry White Chocolate Rice Krispie® Treats
Add a cup of jam and some white chocolate and you’ll have a treat for everyone. Vary the jam though seedless is nicer.
2 tablespoons butter
5 cups miniature marshmallows
1/2 tablespoon good quality vanilla
1 1/2 cups white chocolate wafers or 1 cup white chocolate chips
9 cups Kellogg’s Rice Krispie® cereal or equal
1 cup or 8-ounce jar of seedless marionberry jam
- Butter a 9 x 13-inch baking pan. Set aside.
- In a large pan on the stovetop, melt the butter over low heat. Add the marshmallows. Stir until the mixture is hot, melted, and smooth. Remove from the heat. Add the vanilla, white chocolate, and jam and stir.
- Add the cereal and stir until the cereal is uniformly combined with the marshmallow mixture.
- Remove the mixture to the buttered pan. Evenly distribute the mixture and press it down into the pan with buttered fingers, a piece of waxed paper, or a spatula. Let it cool and cut it into squares.
More recipes you may consider: