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Adventure Guide: Boise or Bust!
Welcome to Boise, Idaho, the last great place in the American West—where housing remains affordable, Western culture still thrives, and access to the nation's wildest state begins within city limits.  
Text by Kelley Ferro   Map by Anthony Morse

Map: Boise, Idaho
Map of Boise, Idaho

Feature Article: Boise or Bust!  |  30 More Towns Perfect For You


BOISE BY THE NUMBERS:

Population: 211,473  
 
Elevation: 2,842 feet (866 meters)  
 
Average Temperature:
Summer:71°F (22°C)
Winter: 32°F (0°C)   
 
Median Home Price:
$210,450
 
Median Household Income:
$38,112
 
Number of Roadless Acres in Idaho—the
Most in the Lower 48:
17 million
 
Relocation Information:
www.boisechamber.org  

Where to Play:
Idaho River Sports rents kayaks ($35 a day; www.idahoriversports.com) for paddling the Boise, Payette, and Snake River white water.
 
For a ride down the winding Boise River try Boise River Tours half-day float trips. The inflatable rafts travel through osprey, hawk, beaver and bald eagle territory, while tour guides give a history of the area
($40/person, www.boiserivertours.com).
 
In town, the Boise River Greenbelt is great for walkers, bikers and horseback riders.
 
The Ridge to Rivers trail system snakes through the Boise Mountain foothills with 85 miles (137 kilometers) of paths to hikers and mountain bikers. To ride them, you can rent a bike at Bikes2Boards ($15 a day, www.bikes2boards.com).

Where to Eat:
After a long day in Boise's great outdoors, refuel at the Cottonwood Grille, for the elk chili and Idaho trout (www.cottonwoodgrille.com;
+1 208 333 9800).
 
For Spanish flair, Tapas Estrella's small dishes range from chicken croquettas to homemade sausages. At happy hour to try their sangria (www.tapasestrella.com; +1 208 426 8400).
 
Lucky 13 doesn't need luck when it comes to pizza. Located downtown just off Hyde Park, enjoy the surprising pizza creations, such as the artichoke-laden Moon Pie, as well as the people watching at this young, hip joint (+1 208 344 6867).
 
Nearby, get your morning fix at Java (+1 208 345 0777). Or get in line at the famous Goldy's Breakfast Bistro for make-your-own omelettes and salmon hash (+1 208 345 4100).

Where to Stay:
The Grove Hotel ($89; www.grovehotelboise.com) boasts upmarket amenities and a downtown location.
 
A taste of Victorian times can be found at the J.J. Shaw House, a six guest room, fully accommodated inn in Boise's historic North End ($79 a night, www.jjshaw.com).
 
Fly fish the streams surrounding Wapiti Meadow Ranch, two hours north of Boise. Private cabins are nearby to horseback riding trails and meals are served in the cozy lodge ($150 a night, plus meals, www.wapitimeadowranch.com).
           
Camp at Lucky Peak Lake (free; +1 208 343 0671), ten miles (16 kilometers) southeast of Boise. The public beaches, water sports and boat rentals draw a crowd so be sure to get there early.

Getting There:
By Air: The Boise Airport hosts daily non-stop flights to Boise from 24 major cities in the United States. Carriers include America West, Continental, Delta, Southwest and United.
 
By Car: Boise is 57 miles (92 kilometers) from the Oregon border, and 157 miles (253 kilometers) from Sun Valley.
 
By Bus: Greyhound Bus lines go west to Boise from Salt Lake City or east from Portland with three buses daily running from each.

Feature Article: Boise or Bust!  |  30 More Towns Perfect For You


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Adventure's September 2006 issue features 31 amazing adventure towns; chaos at the top of Mount Everest; an inside look at surfing California's Lost Coast; 11 fall weekend getaways near you; the best high-tech footwear, world class adventure travel; hiking the Alps, and more!




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