These Boise favorites will pave the path to a summer of fun
Written by Chrysanthemum Crenshaw
Idaho is widely known for its stunning landscapes and captivating natural beauty. These memorable features are highlighted by seasonal sports and the spirited people involved with them. The following is a lineup of summer sports in our area, comments, and tips from a local player, as well as information on how to join in on the fun:
One widely popular summer sport is kayaking. In this sport, locals have a chance to get out on the water, energize with exercise, and get some of that special Idaho summer sunshine. Local kayaking shops and spots include:
Idaho River Sports, at 601 N Whitewater Park Boulevard.
Hours: 9 AM – 6 PM.
Alpenglow Mountain Sport, at 2314 N Bogus Basin Road
Hours: 9:30 AM – 6:00 PM.
Whitewater park, at 3400 W. Pleasanton Ave. Boise Idaho 83702. Hours: Sunrise to Sunset (Includes Quinn’s Pond – perfect for swimming, paddleboarding, kayaking, and canoeing)
The Boise River
Main Payette River
For the local land-dwellers out there, ultimate frisbee (otherwise known as “Ultimate”) is a no-contact summer sport for all ages. You can find Ultimate players in parks throughout the Treasure Valley – most notably, Anne Morrison Park, where professional and leisure teams alike play when the weather is nice. I had the opportunity to interview one local Ultimate player and coach, Derek Davidson.
Derek played Ultimate competitively for most of his life, both as a coach and a team member. In college, he taught the Ultimate Physical Education courses. These courses, while fulfilling, didn’t compare to the more involved approach of teaching the players on the team, according to Derek. This is what brings him to continuing his Ultimate journey by being a team coach today, for the All-Valley Middle School/Junior High Ultimate Frisbee Team, overseeing roughly 20 co-ed players – and he is considering starting a summer program for youth interested in joining the sport.
I asked him what he likes about the sport itself. His answer? Playing with friends.
“The camaraderie and community in playing Ultimate are fantastic. You can go to any city across the planet, and I would bet they either have a grass-roots pickup team or some higher level of Ultimate team you can easily join and play with. Most groups allow players of all skill levels to join.”
Derek says the easiest way to get involved with the sport is through the Facebook page, “Boise Ultimate Scene”.
“Boise Ultimate Scene often lists league times and sign-ups throughout the year, along with days for pickup. It will also provide links and resources for more competitive players in the area looking to join our women’s, men’s, and mixed teams: Seven Devils, Sawtooth, and Lochsa!”
Even further into nature, sports like hiking and rock climbing have grown increasingly more popular since the pandemic restrictions began. People have been seeking new, adventurous recreational ways to stay active, alert, and happy in the past two years – hiking is the perfect sport for these goals. We’ve all read that sunshine is good for the brain, according to numerous medical studies, and walking at least 10,000 steps a day is recommended by the American Heart Association. Add in some steep terrain and some uncharted territory, and you’re sure to hit your fitness goals in no time with this challenging yet approachable sport. One benefit of hiking is that each hike is unique in the distance, duration, location, beautiful scenery, and skill level. Rock climbing, on the other hand, is a perfect fit for those looking to extend their reach in the outdoors and really push themselves. Go to new heights with these beginner and expert hiking and climbing resources:
Idaho Hiking Club (a Facebook group)
Mountainwest Outdoor Club – weekly hikes every Tuesday and Wednesday at 9:00 am. Visit mountainwestoutdoorclub.wildapricot.org to become a member today.
Idaho Alpine Club – various group activities throughout the Treasure Valley, including snowshoe/trail hiking. Become a member through the website idahoalpineculb.org.
Sawtooth Mountains – a favorite local hiking area and part of the famous Rocky Mountains. Featuring beautiful landscapes and terrain of varying skill levels. You can find the Sawtooths a few miles outside of Stanley.
Idaho Trails Association – a nonprofit dedicated to educating people of all ages on the wonders of local trails.
Idaho is also home to many popular fishing spots, with roughly 80,000 square miles of water in the state. Some of these water wonderlands can be found along the Greenbelt, including:
Esther Simplot Park, at 3206 W Pleasanton Ave, Boise, ID 83702.
Hours: 7:00 am – 10:00 pm.
Redwood Park, at 2675 N Shamrock Ave, Boise, ID 83713.
Hours: 8:00 am – 8:00 pm.
Anne Morrison Park, at 1000 S Americana Blvd, Boise, ID 83706.
Hours: 6:00 am – 9:00 pm.
Lastly, we have cycling. With the warmer weather approaching, bikes are sure to come back full force this summer.
The Boise Bicycle Project, at 1027 S Lusk St, Boise, ID 83706.
Hours: 11:00 am – 5:00 pm.
REI Co-op, at 8300 Emerald St, Boise, ID 83704. Hours vary.
George’s Cycles, at 312 S 3rd St.
Hours: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm.
Listed above are some phenomenal resources for beginners and experienced bikers alike. Each shop offers advice and repair services from experienced cyclists and a wide variety of bikes, gear, and accessories. Whether you’re casually biking through the Greenbelt or going on an adventurous cycling race in the woods, in Boise, you are tuned up to go far this summer.