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Great news friends we have finalized dates for some of our 2015 projects!

To sign up early for a project email intern@idahotrailsassociation.org. In the email make sure to reference the project(s) you want to sign up for. After you sign-up, an ITA representative will be in touch.

In the future we will post a separate sign-up page for each project that will have more specific details about the project. Stay tuned for more projects, updates, and further information. Thank you for your interest in volunteering with the ITA and we look forward to seeing you on the trails!

Projects Dates

2015

Agencies Locations &

Logistics

Notes & Contacts
Oolite Interpretive Trail

 

January 24th BLM Owyhee Wilderness

 

Difficulty: Easy to Moderate

1 day

 

 

 

 

Eccles Creek

Hells Canyon

 

 

March 28th Forest Service Payette NF

Difficulty: Moderate

 

1 day

 

 

ITA project lead:

Wally Kimball

National Trails Day June 6th Bureau of Land Management Owyhee Wilderness

Difficulty: Easy to Moderate

1 day

 

 

 

East Fork of Lake Fork Creek June 27th Forest Service McCall RD

Payette NF

Difficulty: Easy

1day

6 volunteers

 

ITA Project Lead: Jeff Halligan

(Crew lead Training Opportunity)

Black Lee Creek

(Box Lake Trail)

 

June 28th Forest Service McCall RD

Payette NF

Difficulty:

Strenuous

1 day

6 volunteers

ITA Project Lead:  Jeff Halligan

(Crew Lead Training Opportunity)

N. Fork Lick Creek

 

July 4th

 

Forest Service Krassel RD

Payette NF

Difficulty:  moderate

2 miles -1 day

 

ITA project lead: Jeff Halligan

 

Alice-Toxaway Loop

From Toxaway side Possible 4 person backpack crew to meet up with Toxaway crew after working the Petit to Alice trail and Alice Lake.

 

 

July 19th -25th Forest Service SNRA

Difficulty: Moderate to strenuous

 

30+ miles

7 days

10 volunteers

 

 

 

 

 

Hum Lake

 

July 25th & 26th Forest Service Krassel RD

Payette NF

Difficulty:  moderate

 

2 days

6-8 volunteers

ITA project lead: Jeff Halligan

 

Livingston Mill-Castle Divide Trail

The non-motorized section between WA Basin and Little Boulder Creek as well as satellite trails including Chamberlain Lakes, Washington Lake, and Chamberlain Creek trails.

 

Aug 9th – 15th Forest Service Sawtooth NF-SNRA

Difficulty: Moderate to strenuous

 

16 miles

6 days

12 volunteers max

 

 

 

ITA project lead:

Wally Kimball

Hike of the Month

The Idaho Trails Association would like to introduce a new monthly update on hiking and snowshoeing trails around Idaho. We’re grateful to be able to utilize materials from Hiking Idaho and other resources. Scott Marchant envisioned a mission for Hiking Idaho to publish guidebooks that make available accurate and inspiring backcountry information. Visit hikingidaho.com to learn more.

Hikes and snowshoes will be posted by the suggested month. This is just a general guideline however as many of the hikes can be utilized outside of the specific month.

January’s Hike

This hike is a popular destination in Boise and from Scott Marchant’s book The Hiker’s Guide to Greater Boise.

Table Rock Loop

  • Distance: 4.1 miles loop
  • Total Elevation Gain: 900 feet
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Elevation Range: 2,750 feet to 3,650 feet
  • Topographic Map: Boise South
  • Time: 1 hour to 30 minutes to 2 hours
  • Season: All Year
  • Water Availability: None
  • Cautionary Advice: During winter, avoid the area when temperatures are above freezing as the trails contain a significant amount of clay and are easily damaged. Be aware of thunderstorm activity while on the Table Rock mesa.
  • Information: ridgetorivers.cityofboise.org
  • Restroom: No

Table Rock Loop

One of the first things you notice when looking from downtown Boise to the top of Table Rock: this flat-topped mesa is close – less than three miles. Other than Camelback Mountain in Phoenix or Twin Peaks in San Francisco, there may not be a better urban hiking experience so close to a major city. Mind you, the 3,652-mesa is no Mt. Borah, but this unique piece of geography delivers the goods when it comes to views.

From the top of Table Rock, vistas extend south and southwest on clear days beyond the plains of the Treasure Valley to the Owyhee Mountains, nearly fifty miles away. Looking north, the forested ridgeline of the Boise Mountains seems close enough to touch. Of course, the mesa’s proximity to Boise keeps the area busy, especially on the weekends. The majority of users approach the peak from the Old Penitentiary trailhead. Use the Warms Springs Golf Course trailhead to escape the crowds and experience a more scenic hike.

By combining several non-motorized trails, you can create a diverse loop. There a few steep sections but they only last a quarter mile or so. The route weaves between lichen-covered boulders, transitions through sagebrush, circles around Table Rock and descends and open hillside covered with hundreds of boulders. Try to plan on being at the top of Table Rock at sunset; you will be in for a special treat as the sun sets on the horizon.

Trailhead Directions

From the intersection of Warm Springs Road and Broadway Avenue, drive east of Warm Springs Road 2.1 miles to the Warm Springs Golf Course. Turn right and park in the large parking area. The trailhead is on the north side of Warm Springs Road.

The Hike

Cross Warm Springs Road and gain elevation as the trail veers northeast. The trail passes through a scenic quarter-mile segment with many boulders covered in lichen with shades of gold, black, grey, green and silver. Interestingly, lichens are not plants, but compound organisms: a symbiosis of fungus living with a colony of algae or cyanobacteria – sometimes both. It is estimated that more than 3,600 species of lichen exist in the United States and Canada and approximately 17,000 are found worldwide.

At 0.5 mile, you reach two junctions, one signed, one not. Continue straight through both, traveling north up a broad gulch towards Table Rock. Arrive a signed junction at 0.9 mile at the base of Table Rock. Continue on the Tram Trail, a fitting name as the steep route gains 400 feet to a junction at 1.2 miles with the Table Rock Quarry Trail. Continue straight on the east side of the mountain (look to your left for a couple of footpaths that ascend to an overlook of the Table Rock Quarry) and then veer left on the backside of the mountain. Reach the parking area near the top of the mesa at 1.7 miles.

Cross the parking area, continue west on the dirt road and arrive at the edge of Table Rock, perched at 1,000 feet over the downtown skyline of Boise. After enjoying the remarkable vistas, continue along the southwest rim of the flat plateau and make a steep descent on the Table Rock Trail. As you descend, you will pass several placards with informative information on the geological history of the area. At the bottom of the descent, reach a signed junction. Continue straight to the next signed junction with the Table Rock Loop Trail.

Turn left, heading east through sagebrush. Follow the trail through the first junction and turn right at the next junction with the Table Rock Loop. Within a few yards, turn left and begin a descent on the Rock Island Trail. The singletrack trail quickly comes to a grouping of rocks with great views west and south. From here, the trail switchbacks back down to the Tram Trail. Turn right and hike back a half mile to the trailhead.

There will be many intersecting trails both unsigned and signed that can be confusing. The Ridge to Rivers trail map does not list all of these intersections as most of the side trails are unauthorized. However, it is difficult to get lost as the open terrain and looming Table Rock always gives you a reference point.

Visit hikingidaho.com or our literature section from the Hiking tab above to learn more.

Spice up your meals!

Carry small containers of dehydrated onions, jalapenos, and garlic to spice up your meals. A few dried herbs like oregano, basil, and thyme are good, too.

Tip from Steve Weston, Author of In The Wild Chef Cookbook

Celebrate 50 years of making memories with the Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation with free ski and snowshoe day!

Saturday, January 10th is a great opportunity to ski or snowshoe your local state park for free. The park entrance fees will be waived and some parks will have free use of equipment. The activities being offered differ from park-to-park some of the activities being offered are free skiing and snowshoeing lessons, gear demos, guided tours, and presentations. There is even an opportunity to find out what yurting is all about. Visit the Idaho Parks and Recreation Calendar for details on each State Parks activities.

Find the park in your neck of the woods and go explore it!

1BeaverCreekSummitshoers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo credit: Idaho Parks & Recreation.

City of Rocks

Early morning walk at sunrise.

Early morning walk at sunrise.

 

This is Idaho!A couple of ITA members spent the weekend of 12/6/14 in the City of Rocks south of Burley Idaho camping and hiking the trails.  The weather was in the 50s with cool nights and great hiking!  The trails were open and soft, only a little ice in the deep shaded areas, but overall a great weekend!  Here are some photos of the weekend!  It is a great time to hike the lowlands and get into the Owyhees!

 

This is Idaho!

This is Idaho!

Sunrise in the canyon below camp.

Sunrise in the canyon below camp.

The Amazing City of Rocks!

The Amazing City of Rocks!

Some of the canyons and geological features of City of Rocks.

Some of the canyons and geological features of City of Rocks.

Granite spires and slabs in the City of Rocks

Granite spires and slabs in the City of Rocks

 

 

First 2015 Project of the year! Oolite Interpretive Trail, Owyhees!

Ready to start the 2015 trail season with a Dig?  January 24th we will be partnering with

the Bruneau Field Office of the BLM to work on the Oolite Interpretive Trail in the Owyhees.  Oolite Trail Project

Project Details:

Shoofly Oolite interpretive site trail:  This is an interesting area to stop along the Owyhee Uplands Backcountry Byway to take a short hike.  We would maintain and widen the 0.5 miles of trail from parking area to the Oolite mineral deposit cliffs where kids and adults explore the small arches, rare plants, and tiny fossils.  We also need to beautify the parking area by removing some wire fencing and constructing a more people inviting wood hiker maze at trailhead.

When:

January 24, 2015.  Meet at 9am at the Boise BLM parking lot (3948 S Development Ave., Boise, ID 83705) to carpool or 10:15 at the Shoofly Oolite Site.   Return to Boise by 3pm or end of project about 2pm.

Where:

This is about an hour and a half drive from Boise.  It is South of Mountain Home and Grandview, Idaho on the Mud Flat Road.  From Boise take the Simco Exit and drive to highway 167 and on to Grandview.  Then turn east on Highway 78 to the Mud Flat Turnoff where you will turn south and drive to the Shoofly-Oolite Trailhead, just past the Shoofly Cutoff road.

Update: The ITA/BLM will be providing hot dogs, buns and condiments for lunch. We will also have drinking water available, but bring your favorite drink or snacks if you would like something additional or different.

Please sign up here:

Thank you project volunteers! We currently have 30 total signed up for this project and we appreciate the interest and enthusiasm. However, this is all we can accommodate on this project, so we have closed the signups.

Thanks for your interest and please keep watching for future ITA Projects!

 

 

Boulder Lake

Description

Few people know the grandeur of Idaho’s Pioneer Mountains. This gem of a lake is a well-kept secret because it’s far from any population centers. But don’t let the drive dissuade you. Plan a nearby camping trip or weekend in Sun Valley, and suddenly, a trip to Boulder Lake becomes a realistic day hike.

Tucked away in some of Idaho’s tallest Peaks, Boulder Lake is surrounded by a rim of jagged, sky-scraping peaks that will leave your eyes popping out. You’ll find extraordinary views of the Devil’s Bedstead and other unnamed peaks topping out near or above 12,000 feet.

The trail begins at a pull-out along Wildhorse Creek Road. You will immediately have to cross Wildhorse Creek, hike across the the floodplain, and begin trekking up switchbacks into a slot canyon. At about two miles in, the views of the stunning alpine scenery begin to unfold. The last half of the trail is primitive, but you can easily follow the route through avalanche chutes, stands of alpine fir, and boulders to the lake. There are a few primitive campsites available, as well as off-trail opportunities to explore the surrounding basin and lakes.

Don’t plan on visiting until the end of July. Snow lingers in this north-facing cirque well into the summer.

Distance

3.8 miles (one way)

Elevation Gain

2,226 feet

Directions

From Ketchum, drive northeast on Trail Creek Road for 22.5 miles, passing over Trail Creek Summit into the Lost River Basin. Turn right on Wildhorse Creek Road. Drive approximately 7.7 miles to the trailhead, bearing right at the junction with East Fork Lost River Road. The trailhead is located at a pullout on the right side of the road.

Maps

Forest Service: Challis National Forest

USGS Quad(s): Standhope Peak, Phi Kappa Mountain

Maintenance Report

The first 2 miles of trail 4057 were maintained by Forest Service crews in 2010. However, at 2.5 miles, the trail becomes more primitive. Follow the most prominent foot path, avoid cutting switchbacks, and stay off of user-created trails to protect the fragile environmental conditions.

Land Status

The Pioneer Mountains are a proposed wilderness area.

Guidebooks

 

Beehive Lakes

Description

Climb through lush forests, of cedar, hemlock, alpine fir, and spruce to the beautiful Beehive Lakes, tucked into a high cirque basin in the Selkirk Crest.  Hikers are rewarded with views of Roman Nose, The Beehive, Pack River, and Twin Peaks.  Options for scrambles to the top of the Crest are also available, where even more spectacular views can be found.

The trail begins on the east side of the upper Pack River and immediately crosses it.  From the river, the trail ascends the hillside following gentle switchbacks.  Views improve with every mile.  Bottleneck Peak, Roman Nose, and The Beehive come into view.  At approximately 4 miles, the trail reaches large slabs of granite outcroppings.  Follow the cairns over the slabs to the upper lake.

There are grizzly bears in the Selkirk Mountains.  Hikers are advised to take special precautions to avoid negative encounters with bears.  The Forest Service installed a bear-proof food storage locker at the upper lake, where overnight campers may store their food.

Distance

4.5 miles (one way)

Elevation Gain

2,040 feet

Directions

From Sandpoint, drive north on U.S. Highway 95 for 10.5 miles, and turn left (west) onto the Pack River Road at Samuels.  Drive 19 miles, following Forest Service signs toward Beehive Lakes, and turn left, driving a short distance off the main road to the trailhead.

Maps

Forest Service: Kaniksu National Forest

USGS Quad(s): The Wigwams, Roman Nose

Maintenance Report

ITA partnered with the Sandpoint Ranger District to brush out the Beehive Lakes Trail in August of 2011.  In 2009, the Forest Service installed a new trail bridge across the Pack River.

Land Status

The Selkirk Crest is a proposed wilderness area.

Guidebooks

100 Hikes in the Inland Northwest by Rich Landers (2nd Edition, 2003)

Trails of the Wild Selkirks by Dennis Nicholls (2004)

 

Scotchman Peak

Description

Stunning views of Lake Pend Oreille, the Cabinet Mountains, and the Selkirk Mountains await you on top of Bonner County’s tallest peak. Hikers will likely find company at the top, where mountain goats negotiate rock outcroppings and steep cliffs.

From the trailhead, the route begins relentlessly uphill for the first mile until reaching the first set of switchbacks.  At that point, the grade becomes more bearable. About two-thirds of the way up, the trail passes through a large hillside meadow, with stunning views of Lake Pend Orielle and the Clark Fork River Valley.  The trail eventually intercepts the ridge and follows it to the summit.  Follow cairns and other indicators through the talus.

The Scotchman Peaks are inhabited by grizzly bears and mountain goats.  Hikers are advised to take special precautions to reduce the risk of negative bear encounters.  Please do not feed the mountain goats or any other wild animals.  Feeding wild animals may result in serious injury or death.

Distance

3.5 miles (one way)

Elevation Gain

3,700 feet

Directions

Take Highway 200 (east from Sandpoint) and in downtown Clark Fork turn north at the Chevron Station.  Go past the school and continue up Mosquito Creek Road #276.  Go past the (former) Clark Fork Field Campus to the junction of Road #2294.  Turn right and go a little over a mile.  Watch for signs for trail #65. Turn left on road 2294A.  Follow this road a little over a mile to where it ends at the trailhead.

Maps

Forest Service: Kaniksu National Forest

USGS Quad(s): Clark Fork NE

Maintenance Report

No information.

Land Status

The Scotchman Peaks are a proposed wilderness area.

Guidebooks

100 Hikes in the Inland Northwest by Rich Landers (2nd Edition, 2003)

Trails of the Wild Cabinets By Dennis Nicholls with Jim Mellen (2nd Edition, 2008)