The First City to be Lit by Atomic Power
There is quite a bit of history associated with this area. EBR1, Experimental Breeder Reactor #1 was built at the Idaho National Laboratory located just outside of town. Today the INL complex encompasses 900 square miles between Idaho Falls and Arco. This is where the first atomic reactors were built....a total of 52 altogether as they experimented with design. Today INL employs thousands of employees from local communities; even providing buses to transport them to their 'remote' location.
|Conning Tower/Sail of|
We've finished our 2nd week in Arco and it looks as though we have 1 week left in this area. The area between Idaho Falls and Arco is a large flat plain; with the exception of 3 large buttes. Last week we had opportunity to drive to the top of one of the buttes as part of our job. Big Southern Butte rises approximately 2500' above the plain. From some locations there are 360 degree views of the surrounding area.
Last weekend we took a short bike ride to the nearby town of Mackey for lunch. This weekend Joan wanted to drive back over to Mackey for their Farmer's Market. We took the jeep this time and while we were there we heard about a Mining Hill Tour. Mining began in this area back in the late 1800's when deposits of lead, zinc and copper were discovered near the top of an 8600' mountain peak. In 1902 a 36" railway line was built to transport ore 3 1/2 miles from the top of the mountain to a smelter/railway site located at the base of the mountain in Mackey.
|Aerial Tramway Towers|
32 towers were built to cover the 2600' descent
This mine opening was on the Alberta level and extended over 4000' into the mountain connecting numerous shafts and levels within.
The drive up and around the mountain took us about
4 hours as we stopped to take pictures and view the various buildings, homes and mine sites, including the abandoned town of White Knob which had a population of over 1000 in the 1920's.
We decided to eat out at Pickle's Place one evening and just had to get a picture before we left.
The scenery up in the mountains west of Arco is spectacular. Enjoy the pics......
That's it for now. Stay Tuned. More to Come