Hope you got your New Year started right

I took an 8 mile ride in the Foothills. I'm not kidding when I say I love winter. It's a great time to be outdoors. Bundle up and go for it. You won't be disappointed. Sorry for the oversized head. Self portraits aren't my strong suit. Image

Happy New Year outdoors

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The Idaho Outdoors gang wishes you a Happy New Year outdoors with great trails, good campsites, lots of exploring on our rivers, good fishing and lots of other activities.

Jan. 10 we're going back to our separate Idaho Outdoors section on Thursdays. We will have our main weekly outdoors feature, Roger's and Zimo's columns, the Photo Challenge, Natural Wonder and other outdoors news on Thursdays.

It will be one-stop shopping for outdoors news.

Foothills albino doe is still roaming the Foothills

I spotted her yesterday during a hike in Northwest Boise, and she had a fawn with her that had natural colors. It's always amazing to see the albino doe, and it had been a while since I saw her so I was starting to get a little worried. No fear. She appeared to be healthy and a proud mama.

Garden Valley snowmobile trail report

This came from Rick Katucki of the Garden Valley Sno Goers. "I was on the Middle Fork Trail (Sunday, Dec. 30) and found the trail to be in excellent condition. Plenty of good, cold snow on the groomed trail. Off-trail the snow is still thin. I'm told it is better at higher elevations. If it stays cold as forcasted, conditions for the Fun Run will be fine." The Fun Run is Saturday, Jan. 5. For details see blog post below.

Monday morning QB outdoors: Boat ramps are slick

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When we drove up to the steep boat ramp on the Snake River, I noticed where a four-wheel-drive pickup had barely made it back up the ramp after launching a boat.

That was the clue not to back down the ramp with my small SUV. So my son and I dropped the drift boat off the top of the ramp and what developed was Idaho style sledding with a drift boat and boat ramp.

Garden Valley Sno-Goers will host snowmobile fun run Saturday, Jan. 5

The Garden Valley snowmobile Fun Run is a go, and here are the details:
Date: Saturday, January 5
Time: Registration 9am to noon
Where: Terrace Lakes Lodge (www.terracelakes.com), just outside Crouch, ID - off the Middlefork Road
Details: $5 entry fee, Trailer and RV parking available, Restaurant and Bar, Raffle drawing with tons of prizes starts at 4pm, 50% payback (50% of proceeds are returned as prizes), Special free Kids' raffle (12 and under)

Bogus Nordic trails offer excellent skiing

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The snow on the Bogus Basin Nordic trail system today (Dec. 27) is excellent and the groomed trails are in great shape.

You can keep going forever.

Most trails are groomed like the Nordic Highway, Nordic Connector, Mores Mountain Extension, Sapper's Return and other popular routes.

The area was foggy this morning with some breaks in the clouds. It can be chilly if the wind is blowing so dress appropriately.

Gear: Giant marshmallows are a hit

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We roasted marshmallows over the campfire on our Christmas tree outing and someone brought magnum-sized marshmallows.

These things were big. Actually, they were fun and made super s'mores.

Campfire Giant Roasters make a big impression on the little ones, too. If you want to have fun around the fire on your winter picnic or when you start up camping again next summer, remember these marshmallows.

Record snow depths at Schweitzer Mountain Resort

The North Idaho resort has been pummeled with over 180 inches of snow this season. The early season snow has allowed Schweitzer to open all 2900 acres of terrain with a village depth of 77 inches and a summit depth of 109 inches. Snow report records dating back to the 82/83 season show this as the deepest early season snowpack on record, the resort reported. Schweitzer’s Ski Patrol Director, Arlene Cook, has been patrolling at Schweitzer for 30 years and can’t remember a December with this much snow. “Simply put, it feels like February” said Cook.

Bogus, Jacksons and Pepsi give you the best deal in skiing

Night skiing for $22 at Bogus may be the best deal at any Idaho resort. Throw in the Jacksons/Pepsi promotion and it's even better. Buy three 20-ounce Pepsi products at Jacksons and get a $10-off coupon good at Bogus. Use it for an evening lift ticket and it comes out to $12. It's a great time to take a friend who's a novice. Start your trip watching the sunset over Boise, take a few runs, relax in the lounge, take a few more runs. You will discover uncrowded slopes and a laid-back vibe. That's a pretty fun evening for a very reasonable price.

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