Life off Interstate 84 - Idaho

The BondyWeb in Mountain Home

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(19 April 2014)  My name is Tim Bondy and the owner of this website.  As of Jan 1st, 2014 we moved to a different domain.  Please head over to the Bondy Blogs Website at  Different address, different system but same type of great articles, photos, stories and information. 

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Mountain Home Idaho News and Adventures

The Fires From Mountain Home


A cluster of thunderstorms moved through the Mountain Home area on the evening of Thursday August 8th, 2013.  And being an extremely dry year, these thunderstorms ignited quite a number of fires in the mountains north of Interstate 84.  By Friday morning at 7:30am Highway 20 leading north out of Mountain Home was closed due to these fires.

  Aug 2013 Fire Photo from Mountain Home Idaho

By mid-morning fire born cumulus clouds (CU), tower cumulus (TCU) clouds and possibly even a cumulus nimbus (CB) were forming over the intense heat and strong updrafts from one these wildfires.  And they were quite visible from Mountain Home.


The map above shows the 2 wildfire areas visible from Mountain Home and in my photo.  By early Saturday August 10th, 2013 both the Long Tom and Mudd fires seemed to be under control per the fire service websites.  And Highway 20 out of town reopened on Friday evening (Aug 9th).

No need to say this but I's a tinderbox out there.  Watch what you're doing and be ready to take action if you see fire while you are out in the mountains of Idaho.


Last Updated on Saturday, 10 August 2013 06:30

Dismal Swamp ATV Trip - Smoky Quartz Pigs?


(July 24, 2012)  Why would anyone want to head to a place called “Dismal Swamp” when there are  100's of places in the Boise National Forest with much nicer names?  The possibility of finding smoky quartz crystals is about the only reason...or is it?  

Dismal Swamp Idaho

No Real Plan
With my wife Toni staying very busy developing her “Cripple Frog Web Design” business, she hasn't had much time for some good old fashioned Idaho exploration.  Sometimes you just have to make the time so I gave her the day, time and Toni was tasked with giving me the destination for this adventure.  She was torn between a rock hounding trip near Atlanta and a trip to Dismal Swamp.  As we were enjoying the scenery passing by in Featherville, Toni was muttered “Dismal” and I knew had my orders.

From Discover Elmore County Idaho Daily

Through Rocky Bar and Up Trinity Mountain Road
We parked about 3 miles northwest of Rocky Bar and unloaded the Arctic Cat ATV around 12:15 PM.  With temperatures just starting to warm into the upper 70's we headed up towards Trinity Ridge Road.  This route is about as scenic as any place in the US especially when the view opens up to the south.  We stopped for a while to take in the sweeping views and to enjoy the many wildflowers before continuing west towards the Dismal Swamp Road.  

NFS Road 290 into Dismal Swamp
We've always had some luck finding quartz crystal on the road down into Dismal Swamp on NFSR 290.  Toni spent a long time slowly searching the roadbed while Addie the Plott Hound and I explored  the woods and did some bouldering.   

From Discover Elmore County Idaho Daily

As rock hounds go, we're more of the “low hanging fruit” hounders. By that I mean we don't really get into digging more that 1 inch or so into the dirt.  And most times, we don't even dig at all.  For our efforts on this day we found about 10 crystals, mostly of the smoky quartz variety but found a “triad clear” that is quite stunning.  And all this long before we bottomed out in the Dismal Swamp valley.  

The Swamp Monsters
Normally we stay well away from the mostly claimed Dismal Swamp area.  But because it was Tuesday and we hadn't seen a single person since we jumped on the ATV, we though a little claim jumping might go unnoticed.  Not really!  We heard rumors the Dismal Crystal Claim wasn't renewed for 2012 so we were going to join the other swamp monsters in digging in the creek.  It appears someone has an active claim down there and they ask other rock hounds to “repect their claim”.

From Discover Elmore County Idaho Daily

Respect the Ugly?
So, a certain someone has a quartz crystal claim in the Dismal Swamp area.  And this certain person asks the rock hounds to “respect” the claim?  While it is kind of annoying one of the finest quartz crystal areas is locked up by a mining claim, I can and do respect that law.  However, when that claimant asks that I give him “respect”, I expect something in return.  I fully expect that fucking pig  will respects my public lands, fill in the holes dug in the creek-bed and above all, pick up the trash heap located 10 feet from his “Claimed” sign.

From Discover Elmore County Idaho Daily

And for all the other folks that have turned the Dismal Swamp area into one big dug up mess and trash heap?  Shame on you!  And as far as I know, all the land in the Dismal Swamp is “public” and the claimers are just “legal squatters that are allowed to take valuable things from the land”.

Link to More Pictures:

Thanks for reading and leave a comment if you wish.

This blog post is dedicated to the people in Fairfield, Idaho who seem to understand things better than other folks further southwest.


Last Updated on Friday, 27 July 2012 20:59

Review of Idaho's Elmore County Fair 2012


(Thursday July 19th, 2012) If you don't understand small town charm, the Elmore County Fair in Glenns Ferry will school you in the way it used to be way back when and you'll be glad for the education. I certainly enjoyed "going to the fair" for the first time in a long time. Read on to find out more...

Elmore County Fair Art and Painting Display
Elmore County Fair in Glenns Ferry Idaho

Mid-Week and Early Bird Special
I drove into the Elmore County Fairgrounds on Thursday at 12:00 Noon. I paid the more than reasonable $3.00 entrance fee and parked in the grass covered parking lot. All in all it took 5 minutes from the time I drove into the fairgrounds to the time I was "in the fair". In short, attending midweek during the day means you will avoid the crowds but also miss some of the entertainment.

Other Information
Link to the Elmore County Fair Website:

Link to photo from my "Fair" trip:

What I Saw

  • The "Beef Showmanship& Market Quality" judging. At least I suspect that was what I was watching.
  • Talked with the owner of "Simple Life Farm Alpacas". Nancy Brletic obviously has a real passion for her alpacas as she answered every question I had about these cool "fiber" animals.
  • Walked through the sheep and pig pens. Something I haven't done since the 1990's in Montana.
  • Walked through the "Elmore County Fair Exposition Building". Saw the 4-H exhibits and the "local goodies" (produce, jellies, jams) displays. Most excellent part of the fair.
  • The Food Court and Merchant area. The food court was pretty cool with chefs from as far away as Lewiston, Idaho selling their delights.
  • I walked into the Carnival area that wasn't open for the day yet.

Overall Appeal of Fair
There is good news and bad news. The bad news started outside the fairgrounds. I expected signs and arrows pointing to the entrance to the fairgrounds. There just wasn't any real signage and that seems rather weird to me as it doesn't cater to the drive-by tourist?

The good news was the fair itself. I really enjoyed the displays in the exposition buildings and viewing all the animals. Going early was good for me in two ways. First, it was a little cooler than the "after 6:00 PM" heat of the day. And second, the crowds or lack of crowds made browsing through everything quite simple.

Thanks to All
I wish to thank all the people who worked countless hours to putting on a great show for this guy. Hopefully my readers will head out to Glenns Ferry before the Fair ends on Sunday July 22nd, 2012



This blog post is dedicated to the friendly and cool folks in Stanley, Idaho where I can find cool articles about businesses and things to do in that area.



Last Updated on Friday, 27 July 2012 11:41

Event Review - Brian Bateman Blend Concert in the Park

(Friday July 13th, 2012) The Mountain Home Arts Council hosted their first "Summer Concert in the Park" event featuring the Brian Bateman Blend Band. Being Friday the 13th, I was a little concerned about attending but I'm glad I did. Look for the link for the video I took.

Brian Bateman Blend Band plays event in Mountain Home Idaho

See the video taken and produced by "The Bondyweb" from this concert at

A Little Ditty About It
The concert was held in the usual spot at Carl Miller Park right off American Legion Blvd. We got lucky there was a break in the weather as the days leading up to this event were extremely hot and smoky. And Friday afternoon gave us a light refreshing off and on rain that kept temperatures in the "great for a concert range".

The Brian Bateman Blend Band played some very good music. It was a little harder rock music than I've come to expect from these "Concerts in the Park" and for me that's a good thing. The eclectic crowd of about 300 or so folks seemed to really enjoy the music.

About the only thing I was disappointed about was the "local business booths". Usually a bunch of local businesses set up shop in the back part of the park offering food, drinks and cool and unusual local products. Instead only 2 businesses showed up…Common Ground and the Snowcone People.

Hear More, See More and Support Them
The Brian Bateman Blend played their heart out for us. I don't think they got paid for this so if would like to "give back" consider buying some music from them. Find out more about this band and how to get your very own copy of at:

Next Concert is Soon
I'm sure the marketing folks in Mountain Home and Elmore County will get the word out on the next concert. Find them on the web somewhere but I do know The Sweetback Sisters will be playing soon.
See their website at:


This "blog post" dedicated to the friendly and forward thinking folks in Fairfield, Idaho

Last Updated on Thursday, 26 July 2012 09:38

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