Just north of Idaho’s capital city of Boise lies one of Idaho’s greatest treasures: the Boise Foothills. The Foothills consist of a vast network of trails, hills and valleys open for the public to observe and explore. The Foothills are a rich part of the Treasure Valley culture and is the playground for all sorts of people and creatures.
The Boise Foothills are also a home to diverse types of wildlife. From the fish in the stream to the birds in the air, the foothills has it all. One type of animal that you may encounter in your adventures in the foothills is deer. The Boise river and the adjacent foothills have almost always been a place for deer to wander. The deer feed on the shrubs and plants that cover the foothills area, mainly close to Lucky Peak.
Birds are also abundant in the foothills. Living in caves and trees, the birds that soar through the clear blue Treasure Valley sky find a lot of their food in the foothills. These birds feed most often on the small rodents and lizards that also claim the foothills as their home.
The Boise Foothills also have places for humans to gather. There are several great parks that give people access to the beauty of the foothills. Two favorite are Table Rock and Camel's Back.
One of the most beloved parks of the foothills is Table Rock. Located near southeast Boise, the sandstone outcropping is a common recreational spot for locals and visitors. Many people with different interests find their way there. There are many reasons to go to Table Rock:
The view from Table Rock is one reason to go to the top. When you stand on the peak of the outcropping, it’s hard not to be moved by what you see. Due to Table Rock’s elevated position, the entire Treasure Valley, the Owyhee Mountains, and parts of Oregon are visible. At night, the already gorgeous valley transforms into a busy light show as it is lit with the shining aura of a million lights from the cities beneath. Cars, street lamps, buildings and more beautify the valley just from their everyday lights.
Though the mornings can be a bit chilly, many people in the valley love to wake up before dawn trudge their way up to Table Rock, and watch the sunrise come over the eastern horizon. The sight is spectacular. And the sunset is just as amazing a sight. When it comes to the view at Table Rock, the view is truly awe-inspiring.
Caves are a reason many people come to Table Rock. Due to the fact that Table Rock is made primarily from sandstone, the sides of the outcropping have formed natural caves. The caves vary in size, depth and function; though most are deserted, some are actually used by local wildlife for protection from the elements.
Climbs at Table Rock even help out the community. Because many people love Table Rock, and it's a strong part of Boise culture, there are many organizations that use Table Rock for events and fundraisers. For example, in 2014, the American Cancer Society is holding the Climb to Conquer Cancer. The Society is accepting donations and team registration to raise money for the research of cancer and for the support of cancer patients. Teams pay an entry fee which will be donated to the American Cancer Association and will then join the rest of the climbers in summiting Table Rock. The event will include celebrations for cancer survivors, food vendors and many other fun opportunities.
Camel’s Back Park
Another pearl of the Boise Foothills is Camel’s Back park. The park is located in the North End of Boise. The park is complete with tennis courts, a playground, large grassy fields and picnic areas. The park also has access to web of trails throughout the greater foothills area.
The park is very people friendly. It’s open from sun up to sun down for anyone to come and enjoy. There are a multitude of different things that can be done at Camel’s Back Park no matter what time of year it is. During the summer picnics and group parties are popular, and in winter the hills can be great for sledding and other winter fun. Camel’s Back Park is a fantastic place. It can even be rented out for special events.
No matter what you like to do, there is something for you in the Boise Foothills. The trails, parks and other aspects of these hills are a valuable asset to Idaho and we are lucky to have them. The ecosystem, the recreation, the sights, are all part of what makes the foothills great.