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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. 

You are here: Mtn Home Outdoor Local Outdoor News ATV Photo Tour of Long Tom Reservoir

ATV Photo Tour of Long Tom Reservoir

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(May 8th, 2012) A fun ATV trip into and around the Long Tom Reservoir would be my first motorized trip of the year. My plan was to head to the southwest and maybe even the northwest side of this lake. Pretty lofty plans considering I would be alone with the exception of my dog Addie the Plott Hound. I took pictures, videos and watched a mule deer and Plott Hound dog stand-off.

View of Long Tom Reservoir from my Arctic Cat ATV

The Ride Into the Reservoir
This ride was meant to be mellow being the first time I had my Arctic Cat 500 this year. And it was considering I only traveled about 9 miles of the planned 20 miles. The weather was incredible for early May and the roads/trails were dry and not very dusty.

From ATV Trip Around Long Tom Reservoir

I parked just off the Prairie Road about 2 miles north of Highway 20 (coordinates 43.279101, -115.532393). Once I had the ATV unloaded, we headed northwest a miles or so before heading west on a rough dirt road that leads to the south end of Long Tom Reservoir. While a 4 wheel drive vehicle would easily get you into the lake, I'd think twice about something without good traction and higher clearance.

From ATV Trip Around Long Tom Reservoir

Pole Creek Area
The 1st cool spot was the Pole Creek area at coordinates 43.282001, -115.568816. This creek was still flowing rather nicely and feeds into Long Tom. I suspect there is a pretty healthy spring keeping Pole Creek flowing this late into the season. It was quite green and lush in this canyon with lots of birds so it's well worth a few minute “stop and explore” session.

From ATV Trip Around Long Tom Reservoir

The Trail is Fenced and Could Get Steep
After the Pole Creek stop we continued west along the southern side of the reservoir on a dirt road that progressively got steeper and rougher. As we were about to drop into the Long Tom Creek canyon, we encountered a fence. Once through the fence I found the trail to be rutted, rough and it looked like it would get steep. This was an easy decision...I turned around and headed back. There will be other days to tackle this section of Long Tom Reservoir Road.

From ATV Trip Around Long Tom Reservoir

To the Edge...of the water
With my trip cut short I figured Addie could use some swim time and I could explore a little around the lake shore. I found a nice place on a stone beach and I let the dog run free (coordinates 43.286433, -115.574690). After watching the dog wade into the water, I came to the conclusion this place isn't a great place to fish as it's too shallow? In any case, it was fun exploring the lakeshore.

Plott Hound and Idaho Mule Deer

Did You Hear the One About a Plott Hound and a Mule Deer?
We left the reservoir area and motored up a trail that leads to the ridgeline above Long Tom. The trail was rather rough and I needed a little exercise. So we headed up the hillside on foot.

Much to my amazement, I watch my dog walk up on a mule deer. The muley had his back to the dog and was munching on the abundant grass in this area. Addie the Plott Hound continued her exploration of the trail without a clue there was a deer only 20-30 feet in front of her. Finally, Addie caught wind of the deer and when it moved, I think both animals were shocked.

Addie the dog stalks a mule deer

The mule deer took off and an uneasy Addie started after it. Obviously, at least to me, the deer didn't fear my dog as much as Addie feared the deer. But eventually Addie got into the spirit and chased the deer about ¼ mile through the sagebrush before giving up. It was a fun watching this “deer verse dog” story unfold.

Map of this ATV Ride My GPS Unit

View Larger Map

Blue line is my 9.2 mile track during this trip

Link to the Photo Album:

Link to a Video I Took:

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