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Family, Summer, What We're Made Of

Get your Western on Sun Valley Style

Before Count Felix Schaffgosch arrived in Ketchum and created “America’s First Destination Ski Resort,” the area had already experienced the boom and bust of a profitable mining settlement, the rise of sheep ranching, and the quiet days of the Great Depression. The Wood River Valley was settled in the 1860’s by a handful of mining prospectors, and by 1880 the area was on its way to being one of the richest silver mining regions. Mule and horse-drawn wagons transported ore between the mines and Union Pacific depots until the rail line extended into Ketchum. After the silver bust in the 1890’s sheep ranching in the area grew from the 1890’s to the 1920’s, when Ketchum became the largest sheep and lamb shipping station in the United States. Though the town changed with the creation of Sun Valley Resort, the past lived on in buildings, ranches, and colorful stories. Through activities like horseback riding, sport shooting, and festivals like Wagon Days and Trailing of the Sheep the story of the area is not being forgotten and you can still experience the Western heritage of this one-time mining town. Horseback Riding While Sun Valley may not flaunt its reputation as a part of the …

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5 Ways to Immerse Yourself in Sun Valley’s Wellness

With fresh mountain air invigorating your soul and the sun shining deep into your subconsciousness, you will come to know why Sun Valley revels in a level of wellness and health not found many places. From healing hot springs to meditative botanic gardens to day spas and health food stores, it’s place where the words “clean living” take on real meaning. We have gathered the five best ways to dive into all of Sun Valley’s wellness offerings so that you can make the most of your visit and return refreshed and recharged. Yoga Spas If you simply need to chill, pamper yourself with a hot-stone massage, facial or acupuncture treatment to relax your mind and revive your senses, you can do that, too. Fitness and Exercise Sure, Sun Valley has trails that go on for miles, and hiking up or skiing down Bald Mountain is a sure-fire way to torch some calories. But, if you’re more in the mood for a good stretch, a core/muscle building workout or a trainer pushing you to try even harder, there are several world class gyms and studios for you to choose from that offer everything from yoga mats to salt water swim lanes. …

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Arts & Culture, Bucket List, Family, Innovation, What We're Made Of

Sun Valley’s Diverse Arts & Culture Scene

You might not expect a small mountain town in the middle of Idaho to be an oasis of arts and culture, but then again Sun Valley is known for differing from expectations. Sun Valley is one of America’s top small towns for art. With more than a dozen galleries, several live theater companies, the lauded Writers’ Conference, the Sun Valley Film Festival, free summer symphony concerts in the Sun Valley Pavilion, and one of the West’s premier nonprofit arts organizations, the Sun Valley Center for the Arts, Sun Valley packs an enormous cultural punch for its size. Blogs and Videos Art Galleries and Museums Sun Valley has more art galleries and museums than you could see if you spent a whole year here! So we’ve added a direct link to the directory of them all below. Performing Arts From ballet to abstract improv, Sun Valley has a live performance to keep you entertained. Live Music Ketchum and Sun Valley have a variety of venues and get some great musicians as they stop in on their cross country tours. From big name concerts at the resort to the local favorite Ketch’em Alive free music every Tuesday in Forest Service Park there …

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Fly Fishing, Summer

4 Ways to Best Experience Fly Fishing in Sun Valley

Sun Valley still supports the kind of fishery you might have imagined existed back when Lewis & Clark first made their trip through Idaho. Fly fishing on four extraordinarily diverse waterways sit anywhere from a stones throw to an hour drive away hold a diverse species of fish. Find monstrous brown trout in Silver Creek, healthy rainbows in the Big Wood River, vibrant cutthroats in the Lost River, and apex bull trout & salmonoids in the Salmon River. Combined, these famed Idaho rivers/creeks make the area a true nexus of freshwater fly fishing. The Sun Valley area offers an incredible diversity of fly fishing opportunities for everyone from the casual novice to the ambitious expert. Time to buy a stack of postcards for Mom, because you’ll have plenty of fish stories to tell after wading our local waters. Guides There are a ton of great fishing holes spread all across the Wood River Valley and even more on the neighboring drainages. With hundreds of miles of waterways and ever-changing meanders the best way to maximize your fly fishing experience is to hire a guide. Beyond just knowing all the honey holes, guides will set you up with the tastiest fly’s to get …

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Biking, Summer

5 Best Ways to Mountain Bike Sun Valley

Known for flowy, laomy buff singletrack complemented with more rowdy, advanced terrain in the sub-alpine and alpine, riders can turn it up for weeks on end without ever repeating the same ride. In a place where every ride takes you somewhere magical, it’s as though you’ve arrived in mountain bike nirvana. It can be overwhelming at first so we have put together the 5 things that will help you best maximize your experience in Sun Valley. Bike Shops and Guide Services With so many trails of varying levels of difficulty it can be overwhelming on where to start. Whether your just getting into the sport or a seasoned professional looking for that brutal expedition there is a bike shop or guide that can get you headed in the right direction. Beyond decades of local knowledge and having all the best spots to go Guides are crucial in local stewardship and personifying etiquette. Whether your looking to dodge the crowds or expand your skills there is a guide in town that will make your short time here unforgettable. Blogs Lift Access Whether you’re enjoying lunch at the Roundhouse Lodge or the of hiking and biking trails, you can’t beat the incredible …

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3 Best Ways to Maximize Hiking in Sun Valley

With hundreds of miles of trail within easy reach of downtown, Ketchum and Sun Valley are a hiker’s paradise. The Wood River Valley is fenced in by the Smoky, Boulder and Pioneer Mountains and within an hour drive lies the Sawtooth, White Cloud and Lost River mountain ranges, each boasting their own unique hiking experiences. Views will have you channeling your inner Ansel Adams, with wildlife sightings virtually guaranteed. The best ways to maximize your hiking experience is to check out some local guide experiences, read up on some of our blogs, and educate yourself on trail etiquette. Guide Services Guides are the best way to take all the leg work out of deciding where to hike and puts the leg work on the trails. There are plenty of guides across the valley with decades of local knowledge and all the best spots to go at any time of year! Beyond just dodging the crowds, Guides are also a vital resource for trail stewardship and etiquette. With more and more visitors venturing to the outdoors to take advantage of the trails, they may feel busier than normal. Guided hiking trips and shuttles to your favorite trailheads are available for any …

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Biking, Hiking, Spring, Summer

Locals Guide to Sun Valley’s Trails

With over 400 miles of trails spread across the Wood River Valley, from Bellevue all the way up north to Galena Lodge, it’s hard to know where to start. The area’s extensive, multi-use trails are fit for all kinds of recreation—biking, hiking, trail running, and horseback riding. Whether you’re new to the area or just new to the trails, there are some great starter trails in Hailey, mid-valley, and Ketchum. We talked to Sara Gress, the Executive Director of the Wood River Trails Coalition which works to create, maintain, and sustain the Valley’s network of trails to get her take on the best spots to try first. Hailey Sara: You have to ride Croy because it’s super fun for biking. The Two Dog Loop [6.7 miles] is fun and flowy, and you get some good views of the Pios, but it’s not butt-puckering. And it’s still enjoyable enough that if you’re an advanced rider, it’s still a really good ride. It’s a good place to hone your skills. I ride out there because it’s enjoyable and it’s not scary. People hike and trail run the trails out Croy and even ride horses sometimes too. Also try: Quigley Trails Park which …

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24hrs in Sun Valley

24hrs in Sun Valley – April – Dr. Jenny Emery Davidson -The Community Library

In this monthly series, we check in with one of our adventurous locals to find out how they would spend a perfect 24 hours in Sun Valley. April showers bring, well, you know the rest. Spring has officially landed in Sun Valley with its season-bending weather patterns and the last days of skiing on Baldy and the Nordic trails. While we collectively shake off winter and crane our necks to glimpse the warmer days ahead, there is plenty of excitement to be found right here, in this often-unpredictable month. For this 24hrs Sun Valley – April edition, we connected with Dr. Jenny Emery Davidson, Executive Director of The Community Library in Ketchum. Jenny has been at the helm of the library for the past six years, working alongside the Board of Directors and a team of dedicated staff to bring “information, ideas, and individuals together to enhance the cultural life of the community.” Over the past year, the community has demonstrated how highly they value that connection to information and ideas. “We’re circulating as many, if not more, books – both physical books and digital downloads,” says Jenny. “People are hungry to read as a way to stay connected, to …

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Skiing & Snowboarding, Spring

How to get the most out of Spring Snow in Sun Valley

Although keystone events of spring are absent this year, one thing there is plenty of is spring snow. Spring in the Wood River Valley brings about juxtaposed weather patterns mixing courteous doses of sunshine and thaw inducing temperatures with winter flurries inflated by frigid arctic winds. While the south slopes turn a muddy brown and the lower valley starts to get buds on the trees it is still winter up high. Some of the best turns of the season happen after the calendar says the seasons have changed. The most obvious place to get your turns in is Baldy. Corny and soft snow awaits you for that oh so glorious spring “pow” turns. Although its little brother Dollar Mountain, with its rad terrain parks, is probably closed this late in the season, there are a few “pocket” parks plus all the classic hits scattered around Baldy. Winter certainly hasn’t waved it’s red flag in the higher elevations. Depending on when you’re reading this, Baldy will either be nearing the end of their sanctioned lift service or closed. If they’re finished up for the season, it’s up to your self-ascending or snowmobiling access to get those last winter fixes. Go for a hike… …

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24hrs in Sun Valley

24hrs in Sun Valley – March – Courtney Gilbert – Sun Valley Museum of Art

In this monthly series, we check in with one of our adventurous locals to find out how they would spend a perfect 24 hours in Sun Valley. Say hello to long(er) sunny days! March in Sun Valley nudges at the first hints of winter bending toward spring, and the promise of summer just around the corner. Still, it wouldn’t do to wish away this glorious month, when Baldy’s bowls turn into perfect corn conditions and the backcountry skiing and Nordic trails are on point. For this 24hrs in Sun Valley March edition, we caught up with Courtney Gilbert, Curator of Visual Arts at the Sun Valley Museum of Art (SVMoA). SVMoA, formerly called the Sun Valley Center for the Arts, is dedicated to enriching the community through transformative arts and education experiences. In her role, Courtney organizes multi-artist, thematic exhibitions that usually relate to SVMoA’s BIG IDEA projects, which “ask timely questions and investigate them through art, music, theatre, conversation, and workshops.”  The latest exhibition, on display at the SVMoA (191 Fifth Street East, Ketchum) through April 16, 2021, is titled “Deeds Not Words: Women Working for Change.” This multidisciplinary curation coincides with the centennial of the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the US …