Ask any Boisean and they will tell you that one of the best benefits of living in the Treasure Valley is how close it is to so many gorgeous outdoor destinations. Whether you are hoping for a hike, dreaming of a refreshing swim, or just need to get some fresh air, there are numerous places to choose from for a fun day trip! Here are just a few of our favorites.
Jump Creek Falls
Only an hour’s drive from downtown Boise, Jump Creek Falls is a must-see for every Boisean. This spot is less about the .25 mile hike and more about the destination: a 60-foot waterfall in the middle of the desert. Come with your swimsuit and go for a quick dip in the pool that the water crashes into. If you are hoping for a more intense hike, then park in the upper parking lot. If you are wanting a short hike that leads directly to the pool, park in the lower lot.
Swan Falls Dam
For a little history and a lot of outdoor fun, head less than an hour South of Boie to Swan Falls Dam. The dam was built in 1901 and is the oldest hydroelectric dam on the Snake River. Though it no longer generates electricity, you can still learn about the power plant at the museum. Visitors can also enjoy picnic areas, camping sites, and hiking trails. If you love to fish, come prepared to catch some of the smallmouth bass that swims along the banks of the Snake River.
Bruneau Dunes State Park
The tallest freestanding sand dunes are a little more than an hour Southeast of downtown Boise at Bruneau Dunes State Park. Visitors love to hike, fish in the lake, and slide down the dunes. The park features the tallest freestanding dune in North America at 470 feet! There is even a public observatory where you can view the night sky. Bruneau Dunes State Park offers both campsites and cabins for campers.
Lucky Peak State Park
Lucky Peak State Park is a hotspot during Boise’s summer months. From boating to biking, there are numerous activities to enjoy. Sandy Point is known for its sandy beach and clear water. Bring a picnic and your pup to Discovery Park. This spot is popular with fishermen and kayakers. If you want to enjoy a day of boating, then Spring Shores Marina is the place to go with its full-service marina and boat ramps.
On the drive to Lucky Peak from Boise you will spot towering black lava rock formations. In the fall and spring, climbers can be spotted making their way slowly up the Black Cliffs. There are numerous climbing routes to take in a variety of difficulty levels. But if you’re new to rock climbing, it is suggested to practice indoors before tackling these beautiful black rocks.
Located 36 miles northeast of Boise, this former mining town offers one of our favorite getaways, The Springs. This natural hot springs retreat is newly remodeled with a lobby and changing room with lockers, towels and showers. Make sure to get reservations before heading up, this is a hot spot…literally. Their cafe offers food and drinks. If you wanted to make a night of it reserve a room at Inn the Pines, their motel just down the road.
These are just a few examples of the adventures you can find within just a short driving distance to Boise. I love to explore the Treasure Valley so if you have any questions about fun activities, let me know.
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