Thursday, January 12, 2017

Finally, clear cerulean blue sky! Make your own outdoor adventure in the snow!

Powder alert! Soldier Mountain will be reopening Friday after being closed all week!
They couldn't open today (Thursday) because they had too much snow!  
Brundage is hosting a Beer and Gear Festival on Saturday and Sunday
Make your own adventure in the snow ... this is a group of guys skiing
from Deer Point to the city of Boise last week ... 
Huck having fun on Crestline Trail recently 
XC trails at Jug Mountain Ranch ... conditions should be perfect this weekend! 
Hi all,

It's been quite the winter so far, eh? We've got great snow in the mountains, providing plenty of thrills for the powder hounds. And we've got consistent snowpack in the Boise Valley, allowing people to make their own adventure close to home, whether it's sledding, snowshoeing, boot hiking, running, snow biking or cross-country skiing.

I wasn't able to talk about it on the radio last week, but some of you might have seen last week's post about three buddies and I making a big backcountry ski trek from the top of Deer Point lift at Bogus Basin to the city of Boise, ending up at the bottom of the Corrals Trailhead. That adventure would still be doable, but given how the snow in the lower foothills has become encrusted by rain this week, it would be quite the bobsled run down icy trails!

For my outdoor tip this week, I'm making a mixture of recommendations for you to enjoy the snow at a time when the weather has finally cleared after a seemingly nonstop onslaught of precipitation in the last week. It's beautiful to see the cerulean blue sky gleaming in the sunshine once again! Be sure to bundle up and dress in layers ... it's going to be fairly cold this weekend:

  • Here's a powder secret: Soldier Mountain is opening on Friday after being closed all week. They couldn't open today (Thursday) because they had TOO MUCH SNOW! Their lifts and buildings were buried in snow! Soldier will be open through Monday for the MLK holiday. 
  • Brundage Mountain is hosting the Beer and Gear Festival on Saturday and Sunday so skiers can demo new equipment and sample local hand-crafted beers from Salmon River Brewery, Payette Brewing Co., Mad Swede, Mother Earth Brewing and County Line Brewing. The event runs from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, and 11-4 on Sunday.  
  • Are you interested in learning how to cross-country ski? Bogus Basin is hosting a lesson series called the Nordic Passport program that offers four lessons -- two class lessons and two skate-ski lessons -- and rental equipment for a package price of $150. The cool bonus about this program is after you complete your lessons, you get a free Nordic season pass for the rest of the season at Bogus Basin. 
  • Go snowshoeing, boot hiking, running, snow biking or cross-country skiing on Boise Foothills trails. After everything froze hard following the rain, however, I have found that boot hiking with solid boots or snowshoeing are more manageable than xc skiing or snow biking. The trails were very soft with 5-6 inches of slush before they froze solid, so the tread on the trails is pretty rough. 
  • Go backcountry skiing or snowshoeing at Mores Creek Summit. The skiing in the upper elevations of Pilot Peak and Sunset Mountain should be fabulous! You just have to climb for your runs! Come prepared with avalanche safety gear and check the local avalanche forecast for the latest conditions. 
  • Go boot hiking or snow biking along the Boise River Greenbelt. The Greenbelt is plowed on a regular basis so it's very passable right now ... however, it can be quite icy in places, so be careful out there!  
  • Go cross-country skiing or fat biking in McCall area. Winter conditions are fabulous in the McCall area and at Jug Mountain Ranch right now. See conditions on McCall Nordic. The warmer temperatures and rain never lasted long in Valley County, so the snow quality is still excellent on the xc ski trails at Bear Basin, Ponderosa State Park and Jug Mountain Ranch. At Jug, you can fat bike all of the xc ski trails. Great fun! 
Have fun out there!

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