The Cats Out Of The Bag! Morels Are In!
Find below links to maps and some general directions and tips. Or join us on Memorial day, May 25 for some fast and furious mushrooming action. Time and weather permitting we are leading a treasure hunt to the Garden Valley area to pick mushrooms and make new friends!
Ok here is the deal. Forest Fires are the ticket. The first spring after a fire has burned the mushrooms come up like there is no tomorrow. The conditions including moisture and soil temperature need to be just right and viola. I picked the three gallons in the picture in about one and a half hours. Once you find them they are usually thick. morel Idaho First put a little thought into the conditions, then do some forays into different terrain until you find pay dirt. If it has been raining a lot all parts of the hill are prime for checking out. But if it has just rained a little, you will want to start with the north facing, shady areas where there may be a higher chance of the moisture level being elevated. I find they like the burned out roots on mountain maples, tree roots and the depressions left where a down log burned all the way to ashes. Sometimes in Yellow Pine needles if it is dry as they tend to trap the moisture giving the morels time to do there thing. Looking at the weather for the next two weeks, unless it has rained really hard in the last 24 plus hours before picking, I would look for north east facing slopes with a mix of fir, yellow pine and brush that is heavily burned. The more burned out the roots the better. Persistence pays, on mothers day I thought I was done and was trying to get a turkey to answer, I did not think there would be any in this locale as it just seemed to dry. I looked down and there was a dried up morel at my feet. So upon dropping off the edge to have a look see, they were everywhere. Just enough moisture I guess.
All right enough Bull-oney, the fire in question this year is outside Garden Valley. They called it the Whiskey complex. South and east of town on the south side of the Payette river. Wash creek there are multiple ways to access the area. Up Alder Creek then left at Alder creek summit on fs road 395. Up Grimes Pass Road which was the eastern edge of the fire. Or as our illustrious candidate for governor once said "Hey diddle diddle right up the middle" in this case that would be the Wash Creek road. The road was the western fire break for much of the fire and provides the best access to the lower end of the burn... find orange trees then follow your nose. To find wash creek Go past the Chevron about a mile and turn right on Alder creek road. Cross river and turn left on the south fork river road approximately 1 mile. You will come to a nice looking new house on the left with a matching garage on the right hand side of the road. Just past entrance to garage is a two track dirt road to the south. If you feel like you are driving into his back yard that is it. There is a sign that says Wash creek road that is laying in the ditch next to the road. Just about any high clearance two wheel drive vehicle can run this one. But it is probably a little steep and ditch for a passenger car like the Camry. Grimes creek would be your best bet if you are saddled with a low clearance passenger car. You will start hitting burned areas about 1-2 miles up wash creek road. You can follow this road up and come out in Centerville or Placerville if you desire.
Be safe, have fun, call if you have any questions...208-284-9905