The Flying “B” Ranch on the Middle Fork of the Salmon River is a popular guest ranch that can be accessed by backpackers, horseback riders, those floating the river, or by back-country plane. The ranch is located 38 miles southwest of Salmon, Idaho and features a main lodge, nine cabins, indoor facilities and its very own hydroelectric power plant.
A popular stop for those on Middle Fork of the Salmon rafting or fishing trips, the Flying “B” Ranch (known simply as “the B” to most guides), has a small store used sometimes to restock float trips for their final 35 miles to the confluence with the Main Salmon River. They carry rare wilderness items like block ice, ice cream, beer and soda.
Getting supplies to the Flying “B” is no easy chore. With no road access, nearly all items are flown in via small back-country planes. When items can’t be flown in they are floated from Boundary Creek, the normal launch site for Middle Fork of the Salmon trips, to the ranch, more than 65 miles downstream. A photo in Cort Conley’s guide book to the Middle Fork of the Salmon shows a VW Bus loaded on a sweep boat on its way to the Flying “B” Ranch.
Many often wonder what exactly the “B” stands for in the Flying “B” name. Captain Bernard was a major player in the Sheepeater Indian War. Bernard Creek enters the river from the left only a mile downstream of the ranch.
Those who stay at the Flying “B” Ranch are treated to great meals and even better surroundings. The Middle Fork canyon in this area is wide-open but the “B” marks the start of what has become known to boaters as “Impassable Canyon” – where the canyon shortly pinches in and the river picks up speed. Trails from the “B” go both upstream and downstream, which allows visitors access to hundreds of miles of trail to explore, side creeks to fish, and vistas to climb.
More information about the Flying “B” Ranch: