Story by Drew Dodson | Photos Submitted
If you’re curious to learn about Eagle’s burgeoning wine industry, you may be interested in the upcoming “Taste the Terroir” Eagle Community Dinner, held in Lakeshore Plaza. The event will celebrate Eagle’s terroir in all things, local meat and vegetables included, as well as wine.
If you’re interested in planting grapes but don’t know where to start, you may be interested in future events put on by the Eagle Grape Grower’s Group, including a community lecture on how to get started. You can contact 3 Horse Ranch Vineyards at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.
In most places, a “mountain bike fall” may sound like the last kind of getaway any sane person wants to take. But alas, this is Idaho and Sun Valley is widely heralded as one of the top spots in Idaho to be awestruck by the cornucopia of fall colors. Deep oranges, bright reds and dazzling yellows dot the mountains. What better way to take it all in than from the seat of a mountain bike on a world-class trail? Trail difficulties ranging from beginner to expert provide for a unique fall experience for mountain bikers all over the spectrum. While summer rides can be enjoyable, it’s tough to rival the captivation of crisp fall temperatures on a single-track immersed in the eruption of full-swing autumn leaves. With plenty of bike-rental outfitters in the Sun Valley area, everyone can get in on the action this fall. For help planning your ideal Sun Valley mountain biking excursion, visit www.mtbproject.com for trail descriptions, difficulties and reviews.
For many people, Winter represents the end of all things good about the outdoors—but it doesn’t have to. One of the great things about Idaho is the plethora of outdoor activities accessible to locals year-round, perhaps none greater than The Springs at Idaho City.
Just 45 minutes from Treasure Valley, The Springs is the quintessential hot springs retreat experience, complete with massages, private tubs and luxurious new lodging at Inn The Pines.
There’s even a large, naturally heated community pool. Better yet, The Springs offer affordable rates of $17 for an adult day pass and $45 per couple for an hour in one of four private tubs. Reservations are a must-have with this popular getaway gem, as daily guests are carefully limited to ensure every guest experiences the relaxing tranquility beckoned by mountain hot springs. With the perfect blend of fresh mountain air, natural hot spring water and luxurious comforts of home, The Springs Retreat at Idaho City should be atop your list of weekend getaways this Winter.
Crazy about camping? Plan a stay at the Water’s Edge RV Resort in Cascade. Guests are greeted by cordial site hosts Katrin and Ashley, as well as a healthy dose of weekend entertainment. Located just off highway-55 on the northern outskirt of Cascade, Water’s Edge has something for everyone. Movie theaters, stores, restaurants, coffee bistros and scenic tours by air are just a few of the activities nearby Cascade has to offer those who aren’t camping fanatics. For those who are, though, there are still the outdoor favorites of fishing, hiking, bird watching, hunting and natural hot springs. Better yet, Water’s edge campground offers something for all varieties of camping, including water-view sites, pull-throughs for large RVs and larger sites for groups. Included amenities in the campground are dog walks, beach volleyball courts, horseshoe pits, restrooms, showers and laundromats to accommodate the comfort of all guests. If all of that isn’t enough to coax you into a weekend getaway, Water’s Edge also prepares a tantalizingly sweet cinnamon roll breakfast on Saturday mornings, followed by a mouthwatering full course Sunday morning breakfast that could make even the crabbiest morning person crawl out of their sleeping bag.
Garden Valley Trail Rides (GVTR) is a horseback riding outfitter based on the cusp of the scenic Boise National Forest. Located just over an hour from Boise, Garden Valley is the perfect place to plan your first jaunt into the world of horseback riding. GVTR offers a horseback riding experience for all skill levels, ranging from beginner to equestrian expert. Guests can make reservations for rides lasting one hour, one-and-a-half hour or two hours at prices ranging from $50 to $100 to customize the experience that’s right for them. Friendly trail guide Mary Jo leads riders through wispy mountain meadows, shade-shrouded forests and breathtaking vistas, all the while accompanied by gentle horses and good conversation. GVTR is ideal for quick day outings, but for longer getaways, adventurers can hit the hay at the Garden Valley Motel and enjoy other Garden Valley activities, such as whitewater rafting or a production at the Starlight Mountain Theater. Either way, saddle up and get out there for a memorable time!
So, what about me? As an outdoor enthusiast and lover of traveling, I have no shortage of enchanting getaway spots near Treasure Valley. This summer alone I managed to make more than 40 lake visits to several local lakes in an effort to beat the heat. Macks Creek Park at Lucky Peak was always a winner, with several docks jutting into the lake for swimmers and boaters alike to use, as well as 15 campsites and sandy beaches lining the shore. Macks Creek provides all the fun of the lower beach at Lucky Peak without the hordes of people. For those craving even more seclusion, countless pullouts are peppered along the road for use on a first-come, first-serve basis. Macks Creek Park and the surrounding beaches are one of the best ways to soak up the final rays of warmth 2017 has left to offer. For the more adventurous types, I recommend taking the time to hike to Sawtooth Lake or Alice Lake in the breathtaking Sawtooth Range. Both are excellent choices for overnight backpacking treks.
Crystal clear alpine lakes amist the jagged snow-capped peaks of the Sawtooths is about the most therapeutic getaway a nature lover like myself could ask for.
Both hikes are roughly in the 10-mile range, feature jaw-dropping scenery from start to finish and boast an elevation gain of 1,800 feet. You can’t go wrong with either of these hikes, but daytrippers should allow plenty of time to complete the trek.
Finally, for those craving the natural hot spring experience on a low budget, Kirkham hot springs in Lowman is the perfect spot. At $5 per car for day use and $15 to camp, these natural springs offer quite a big bang for your buck. While not in the same stratosphere of luxury as The Springs in Idaho City, Kirkham hot springs gives guests the primitive hot spring experience, complete with waterfalls and pools overlooking the roaring, deep, blue waters of the Payette River. I stayed in Campsite 13, which provided ample space for my party of four and had a pool nestled up by the foot of the mountain just 20 feet from our tent. From the melting comfort of that pool, I watched a full moon creep up over the mountain, blanketed by towering pines, leaving me utterly awestruck.
Like magicians, a true adventurer never reveals every secret spot, so get out there and explore what the world has to offer every chance you get. Life’s too short and the world is too big—and who knows? You might just make a memory or two.