I felt like Oprah, in her excited voice, was yelling, “You’re going to Idaho,” when I read the email invitation. Wow, I’m finally going to Idaho, and it will be my 48th State consumed my thoughts. I’m going to experience Idaho, specifically Sun Valley, and it will be an adventure. Typically my adventures happen outside the United States, so to have the opportunity to do my favorite experiences without a passport is clutch!
I didn’t know much about Idaho besides Boise State and their potatoes, and to my knowledge never tasted them either. Regardless, I landed in Hailey Friedman Memorial Airport, which services Sun Valley. I was a Sun Valley tourism board guest and joined by Max and Arielle, two other dope influencers. Check out their Instagram accounts!
Pioneer Cabin Trail
The first adventure was hiking the Pioneer Cabin Trail, an 8 mile in and out undertaking. My sea-level lungs were put to the test starting at 7000ft and ascending to 9000 ft. The trail was made up of switchback, allowing me to enjoy 360 viewers of picturesque rolling mountains. We eventually reached the cabin, which can be occupied for overnight stays on a first-come, first-serve basis. The cabin features four mattress-less bunkbeds (sleep bags not included), a kitchen table, a storage room, and a sturdy frame to survive the elements on a sketchy day. Good thing we had a blue sky-filled day and enjoyed every moment outside.
Baker Lake Trail
The second hike to Baker Lake Trail was only 4 miles in and out and less strenuous than Pioneer Cabin. Our guide from Sturtervants led us on a pleasant hike and shared great stories on this adventure, which added to the experience. We started at 6 am, and once we reached the lake, it was ours to enjoy. The bowl-shaped lake had a few fallen tree trunks protruding into the lake that you could walk out onto the water. The lake is deep enough to dive in for a refreshing swim. I wasn’t so brave to take a dip.
At the Sun Valley Club, we didn’t get on the green and do 18-holes, but we practiced our short game on the practice putting greens. I’ve only worked on my short game on miniature golf courses designed with themed obstacle courses. However, I was able to pull together my minimum golf experience together and come in 2 over par.
We hooked back up with Sturtervants for mountain biking. It has been at least five years since I’ve been on a mountain bike, so I am excited about this adventure. That was until we start biking uphill. My poor lungs were pumping as hard as they could. As much as it hurt, I was excited about the challenge because I knew once I got back to LA, my stamina was going to skyrocket. The reward for those challenging climbs is the downhill fun, and Adam’s Gulch was a thrilling packed-in single track. We were flying!
The Sun Valley Wellness conference, the longest-running yoga conference, was taking place during the visit. We journey a meditation hike, and it was my first time participating in one. We started with a meditation, and our guide spoke to us about connecting with the earth. I will say it did bring stillness to my mind. As a creative, it’s hard for me to focus and be present. I found myself tuning out what happened the day before or what was awaiting me in the future. This hike was only two miles to a lookout point on Bald Mountain, where I had a panoramic view of Sun Valley.
Target shooting at the Sun Valley Gun Club was fun and humbling. It was my first time shooting a gun, but my aim sucked. Out of 25 shotgun bullets, I didn’t hit one target. I will say in my defense. I recently had Lasik surgery, so after my eyes are fully healed, I will have to give it another shot. Besides that, I was a cheerleader for everyone else who hit multiple targets!
Fly Fishing is another activity that I haven’t tried in over five years. I didn’t grow up having my dad, uncle, cousin, or mentor take me fishing. The last time I fly fished, I did well and enjoyed it. I was most excited about this activity, and Silver Creek Outfitters decked me out in waders. I looked the part and was ready to catch some trout! The river is catch and release, so it would only be hi and a quick goodbye. It took me a while to get going, but once I did, I was catching fish.
Sun Valley is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts, and they wore me out! The best part of my stay was the people. I had excellent guides who made every adventure exciting and helped me learn or improve my skill set. The everyday people of the Ketchum were friendly and hospitable. I love to discover new destinations in the States and build my repertoire of places to come back and visit!
If you want to visit Sun Valley, check out their website www.visitsunvalley.com to find activity guides, hotels, restaurants, event updates, and more. Instagram @visitsunvalley #seeksunvalley #idaho #mindfulnessinthemountains
I stayed at the Knob Hill Inn, and the customer service was 5-star!