Hit the Trails 

Top picks for Foothills escapes

Boise's Foothills are crisscrossed with enough trails to send mountain bikers, trail runners and hikers into a frenzied euphoria as they try to wrap their single-track minds around it.

While having options is a good thing, it can lead recreationists into ruts, falling back on those familiar favorite trails. In the worst case, it can even lead to complete decision-making paralysis, leaving us shaken, confused and at home.

To help, David Gordon, trails coordinator for the Ridge to Rivers trail system, offered his top picks for trails suitable for every skill level and interest. Many of the routes are loops that make use of several trails. To find your way around, pick up a Ridge to Rivers trail guide available at most outdoors stores in the valley for $6-$8. Proceeds help support the system, which currently includes 130 miles of trails.

MOUNTAIN BIKER

click to enlarge BEN WILSON

Beginner

Eagle Bike Park

Great trails with minimal elevation change and you're never far from your car.

Intermediate

Polecat Gulch Loop

A little more elevation change in a six-mile loop.

Advanced

Scott's to Corrals to Bob's

Trails are located off Bogus Basin Road. Head out on Scott's to Corrals and come back on Bob's.

HIKER/RUNNER

click to enlarge BEN WILSON

Beginner

Lower Military Reserve

Minimal elevation change makes this a great option.

Intermediate

Deer Point to Elk Meadows

Bogus Basin trails offer a little more elevation gain with great views.

Advanced

Camel's back park to Hulls Gulch to Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail

Combo offers 13 miles on an out-and-back trek.

DOG/KID WALKER

click to enlarge BEN WILSON

Beginner

Toll Road to Cottonwood Creek Lookout

Lots of shade. On-leash dogs only on this trail. A little more than one mile long.

Intermediate

Tablerock Trail

Off-leash for dogs with some serious elevation gain on the two-and-a-half-mile route.

Advanced

Deer Point to Elk Meadows to Tempest to The Face To Deer Point

Bogus Basin trails offer a good, long loop.

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