Trailhead Post

A blog filled with handy information, safety tips, and facts about Idaho.

May 18, 2022

Hello again BHG members!

Idaho spring is in full swing, which means temperature fluctuations of 20 degrees and inclimate weather at the drop of a hat; but more on that later. Last week we saw the departure of our favorite hike leader and group founder, Clara. As noted in the last blog, hike planning has been bestowed upon me. Be ready for new locations and adventures!

For example, at least one or two hikes this summer will be planned for Craters of the Moon National Park and/or the Sawtooth Mountains. While still in the ideation phase, both trips would take us further than we ever dared to venture before. As such, we will probably send out a questionnaire to gather who will be in attendance, who can carpool, and so on. Due to the distant nature of these expeditions, we don’t want to leave anyone behind. So keep your eyes and ears peeled for future communications about BHG expeditions.

In the meantime, we will be traveling to the beautiful Garden Valley area!

Another beautiful Saturday hike

Our hike this Saturday takes place on the Granite High Country Trail at 9:30 am. The trail starts at the base of the Rabbit Creek Summit in the Boise National Forest. The seven mile Granite High Country Trail (#665003) travels along a ridge nestled between the North Fork of the Boise river and Idaho City. According to other hikers, this trail is quite scenic but ranked as moderate. As many of you know, a moderate trail can still be somewhat difficult.

Please wear adequate footwear, bring lots of water, and don’t skimp on packing extra layers. You never can tell what will happen in the Idaho wilderness.

Preparing for Winter, Spring, and Summer (sometimes in one day)

If the last two weeks have taught us Idahoans anything, it’s that Idaho weather is nearly unpredictable. We had snow, rain, hail, thunder, lightning, and wind (lots of wind) in the span of a few days. For those who have lived here for a while, this behavior is not new; but to those who just arrived, it may be a bit deceptive.

Not to worry! The best way to prepare for Idaho weather is to pack versatile items for any circumstance. Yes, it can be a burden to pack more than one water bottle and a light sweater; but when you need it and don’t have it, you sing a different tune.

Lite essentials might include:

  • Space blanket (reflective metallic blanket that traps body heat)

  • Rain/wind jacket

  • Wool gloves, socks, and sweaters

  • Moisture wicking underlayers

I tend to pack heavy or leave extra essentials in my car at the trailhead. I never leave the house without at least two gallons of water, a wool blanket, and emergency rations.

As we move into early summer, don’t forget that the pests will be making their first act debut for the year.

Insects that bug us

Ticks. Mosquitos. Horse flies. We know them. We love to hate them. Sadly, they are making their return over the next few weeks as summer encroaches on us. While we can be hopeful that the late freeze subdued their return, it’s best that we keep an eye out for their debauchery. Ticks are masters of hitchhiking. All it takes is a simple nudge against an overgrown plant for a tick to grasp onto your pant leg.

Then you have the pesky mosquito, a vile creature that has buzzed in the ears of humans and dinosaurs alike. A villain born from the depths of time existing only to spread disease and suck blood. Honestly, you have to commend them for sticking around for 210 million years.

Finally, last but not least (in size), the horse fly is bound to circle us like a flock of rabid vultures. As an Idaho native, I can tell you that horse flies are mean, big, and bite hard. They look like regular flies, but double or triple the size. I’ve found that slapping them with a hat is quite effective as long as you finish the job.

Another great defense is bug repellant with deet. Deet can be hazardous to your clothing, but it’s the best at keeping ticks off of your pants. There are also all natural bug repellents, although I’m not sure how effective they are at keeping the worst of the pests off of you for the duration of the hike.

As always, come prepared, have fun, and message us on Instagram if you have any questions.

See you on the trail!

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© 2021 Boise Hiker’s Guild

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