The Paw-Friendly “Big City” – Boise, ID
So yours truly is (one again) getting up to no good on her own while hubby is away. That means it’s just me and the paws…the paws and I, and we’re doing it all in “big city” Boise. I place this in inverted commas because Boise is one of the few capitals we’ve travelled through that doesn’t feel large at all. There’s a mere 200,000 or so souls living here, a modest-sized downtown and pretty much all the shops and conveniences you’d expect. But what sets this place apart and makes it special is the nature. Right behind the city high-rises, and in fact even through downtown itself there are massive dedicated areas of green all for the benefit of humans and paws…and that gives the town a whole different feel.
Boise City boasts over 850 acres of parks and natural areas and backs up against the fabulous Boise foothills, a 130-mile network of scenic and loose-yourself-in-the-mountains trails. These areas are not only human, bike and paw-friendly, but many of them have dedicated off-leash trails! That’s a total rarity in big cities and for passionate doggie-lovers like me it’s akin to finding ice cream in the desert….a total treat! I’ve not even come close to exploring all the spots, but figured I would share two of my favs:
1/ Boise Greenbelt
In 1964 some bright guys had the foresight to hire some other bright guys to create a continuous “green belt” of public lands stretching the entire length of the Boise River. The outcome of this awesome idea was a totally green, totally preserved 22-mile bike/hike/walk trail through the very middle of town. Genius! Our RV park (Boise Riverside RV Park) just happens to sit right on the Greenbelt so pooch and I have been hopping out of bed and onto the trails everyday. They’re leash-only, but there’s tons of access points to the river where you can unofficially go for a dip and a splash. This trail also happens to be a popular fishing spot, a great bike-path and part of the Idaho Birding Trail so there’s a bit of something for everyone.
2/ Boise Foothills
The Boise Foothills pretty much engulf the entire northern view of Boise and huge parts of it are public land. What’s ultra-cool is that they’ve designed a big portion of their trails as off-leash friendly so doggie and you can both amble along in nature in total freedom. These trails are not only clearly marked on the maps, but they’re marked on-trail too so there’s never any question of whether your untethered pooch is legal. Polly was pretty much trained to be an off-leash doggie so we seek out these kind of places wherever we can. One our our fav spots is the Old Fort Military Reserve which is only ~15 mins drive from our park and encompasses a huge 460 acre sub-section of the larger foothills. This time of year it’s bursting with glorious yellow blooms and the ridgeline gives sweeping views of downtown. There’s even a dedicated fenced-in off-leash dog park and archery range on-site. Pretty cool!
There’s tons of other pooch-friendly areas around town including 9 other off-leash dog parks and a good selection of paw-happy restaurants (we may well hit one before hubby comes home). Between everything out here it’s one of the paw-friendliest spots I’ve been and that always gives it extra points on my scale.
As to getting up to no good? Well, I’ve been ordering packages on Amazon and have received several new Benchmark Atlases (very exciting for me), a new vacuum (on the way…very exciting for the rig) and new empty boxes (very exciting for the cats), plus I’ve been dabbling with motorized needles and thread. The latter sounds dangerous I know, especially for me, and I really have no idea what I’m doing, but I’m pretty sure the outcome will be something to blog about. Hope springs eternal ya know….