Tag Archives: Boise

Hiking Around Boise – the Ideal Summer Staycation

Summer is the perfect time of year to enjoy the great outdoors. In the west, we oftentimes take for granted the accessibility we have to beautiful trails that wander along peaceful streams or climb impressive mountains. Especially in Idaho, where the summer heat is less intense than other locations, locals should take the time to experience the natural beauty their state has to offer before the winter snow sets in and masks it all in white. Instead of booking an expensive flight or traveling to a foreign destination, look around! With a little collaboration between mother nature and the Anniversary Inn in Boise, this weekend could easily turn into an affordable, enjoyable staycation.

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There are dozens of hiking trails that surround Boise and most all are worth the time and effort. However, if you’re looking for the most “bang for your buck,” I would choose Hull’s Gulch. Why? Well, I have three reasons.

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Reason #1: Accessibility:
The Hull’s Gulch trail is located less than 10 minutes from downtown Boise within the Hulls Gulch/Camels Back reservoir. Just take 8th street north towards the foothills until the pavement ends. Park in the first parking lot on your right. More details on location here.

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Reason #2: Versatility
There are numerous ways to enjoy the gulch, which makes this area an ideal place to spend a Saturday with your sweetheart (and kids if they’re lucky enough to come along). Whatever your hiking experience or time frame, the gulch has an option for you. Take a look at this map to see the various trails to choose from within the gulch trail system. If you want to spend just an hour or two, pick a loop that is shorter or hike in until you are ready to start heading back to the parking lot. For the full experience, pack a lunch and hike the entire 7 mile loop. Stunning views of the city and beautiful nature scenes can be seen all along the trail.

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Reason #3: Safety
The Hulls Gulch Nature Trail is reserved for hikers (restricted from bikers and equestrians though they may use other parts of the gulch) and the climb is gentle which means it can be enjoyed by everyone! Still, be sure to bring enough water as there is little shade along the trail. See other reviews of the hike here.

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After a long hike, reward yourself with a night of relaxation at the Anniversary Inn in Boise. To continue the nature theme, book the Enchanted Forest Suite. There, you will be surrounded by painted murals depicting a forested area that you may recognize from your day spent in the Boise foothills. Make no mistake, you will find no wildlife or dirt trails here. Only a comfortable queen bed, TV, and luxurious jetted tub for two. We’ll even throw in a bottle of sparkling cider and a delicious cheesecake – no trail maps required. After a weekend like this, you may never want to leave Boise again.

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People flock from all over the country and world to enjoy the American west – and it’s right outside your door. So, get your hiking shoes on! This weather won’t last forever.

Celebrate Your Anniversary With the Fishies

Let’s be honest, fishing is not for the impatient or the faint of heart. However, with the right gear in the right location, fishing can be incredibly exciting and even romantic. This year, surprise your sweetheart by planning a lazy afternoon picnic, set on the banks of a quiet river and enjoy your anniversary in the company of fishies.

First, you must plan a picnic – after all, what is an anniversary celebration without food?!
Option #1: Take-Out
Perhaps you have a favorite restaurant, one you frequent often together. Most restaurants have a “take-out” option, so call ahead and order a few dishes to share. Even higher-end, fancier restaurants will often accommodate requests for take-out. Imagine the surprise of pulling fillet mignon or pasta carbonara out of the picnic basket! Your spouse would go crazy. However, take travel time into consideration. There’s no use in spending money on food that will go bad.

Option #2: Make-It-Yourself
In my opinion, the simplest picnic is best. Plan a meal around delicious foods that also travel easily such as hummus with pitas or veggies, sandwiches, cheese and crackers, fresh fruit, cookies or brownies, etc. Don’t be deterred, a simple picnic can be easily made extravagant by adding a few specialty items like candied nuts, a fresh slice of pie from the local bakery, or slices of gourmet cheese from the deli counter. Pack this with a delicious sparkling beverage and wine-glasses and you’re on your way to a real special surprise.

Secondly, get the gear.
If you are interested in fishing long-term, go to a local fish and tackle store and invent in your own gear. If you’re in Boise or the surrounding area, check out Howard’s Tackle Shoppe on your way to the lake. The staff there is incredibly helpful and knowledgeable; they will equip you with everything you need at a decent price. If this fishing endeavor is a one-time adventure, check out your local fish and game organization (for Idaho, go here). Oftentimes, they will offer free lessons or cost-friendly ways of testing the waters without making an investment into expensive gear. June 14th is Free Fishing Day in Idaho – the one day a year when you can fish without a permit. See the schedule of events to find out where you can go to enjoy the days festivities.

 

Third, pick your location.
While the local fish and game activities are fun and convenient, it you’re looking for a romantic afternoon, get your hands on a fishing pole to share, rent a canoe and head out over the waters with your sweetheart for a truly romantic excursion. I recommend Lake Lowell. Just 30 minutes outside of Boise, this lake is pristine and heavily populated with animal life. It is conveniently located and never very crowded. It is considered a prime spot for spring fishing, so make the drive, it will be worth it.

Last, but not least, book a night at the Boise Anniversary Inn.
Anniversary Inn has just the suite to cap off your perfect anniversary: Fisherman’s Wharf. This Ruby Suite is enchanting. Nestle in next to your sweetheart in the cozy bed of a canoe (don’t worry, mattress is included!) and reminisce the days events surrounded by beautiful panoramic murals of Boise’s natural wildlife. It will feel like a continuation of the day on the lake…just without the flies or fish. After an afternoon spent fishing, you’ll be happy to relax and enjoy celebrating one more year with your beloved.