Breakfast in the Bitterroot: Memories Cafe

By DONNA L. HULL

Breakfast and a scenic drive just seem to go together, don’t you think? It’s one of my favorite boomer travel combinations. I’m starting a new series here at Boomers in Missoula called Breakfast in the Bitterroot. Every so often, I’ll be highlighting one of my favorite breakfast joints combined with an idea for a scenic drive. First up: Memories Café in Corvallis,Montana.

This Breakfast in the Bitterroot tour begins as your car points south from Missoula on Highway 93 for the 44-mile trip to Corvallis. Of course, you could head straight for the left turn onto Woodside Crossing and the few short miles to Memories Café.

Instead, turn left onto Eastside Highway at the Stevensville Cutoff Road for a scenic journey through a valley filled with Montana farmland and mountain views. Bring your camera just in case the mist is rising from the Bitterroot River or the sun illuminates one of the many old barns standing guard in the fields.

Boomer travel tip: watch out for deer crossing the road.

The scenery isn’t over when the car pulls into a parking place at Memories. The breakfast and lunch eatery is located in the old Corvallis school. With its tall bell tower, the building reminds me as much of a church as it does aschool.

Inside, farm implements, old photos, framed newspaper clippings and antiques hang on the walls commemorating Corvallis farming history. If it’s a warm morning, sit outside on the deck, or in the gazebo, where a flower-filled garden setting accompanies your pancake and eggs.

The breakfast at Memories, served up by Carla and crew, is basic but good. I enjoy the build your own option and can vouch that the eggs, sausage patty and sliced tomatoes (my usual) is fresh and filling. My husband Alan thinks the pancakes are the best in the Bitterroot Valley.

After breakfast, take a scenic drive in the Sapphire Mountains. Turn right onto the Eastside Highway from Memories Cafe, then hang a quick left at Willow Creek Road.  Follow Willow Creek—it’s going to take a sharp right and a couple of other twists and turns before reaching a portion of the Bitterroot National Forest. Drive until the pavement ends, then pick a forest road to explore before returning to Missoula.

Boomer travel tip: Are you a snowmobiler? Haul your sled down to Memories Café for a hearty breakfast before running the trails of the Sapphire Mountains.

Do you have a favorite Bitterroot breakfast joint? Tell me where to go on my next Breakfast in the Bitterroot.

Donna L. Hull writes about active travel for baby boomers at My Itchy Travel Feet, The Baby Boomer’s Guide to Travel. She is also the author of My Itchy Travel Feet, Breathtaking Adventure Vacation Ideas, available at Amazon Kindle, Nook and iTunes.

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Flatlander to mountaineer could be the title of Donna Hull’s latest boomer adventure. The freelance writer and her photographer husband Alan (both baby boomers) have recently relocated from Arizona to the Missoula area for full-time living in the most beautiful spot in the world. Follow along as Donna writes about Western Montana travel fun that you may have forgotten about. Or, you might discover a new travel adventure waiting just down theroad.

Donna Hull publishes My Itchy Travel Feet, The Baby Boomer’s Guide to Travel., the internet’s go-to site for active boomer travelers. Donna is also the author of My Itchy Travel Feet, Breathtaking Adventure Vacation Ideas.