THERE’S A LOT TO LOVE in Sun Valley — just ask around and you’ll pretty quickly encounter folks who left behind their lives and high-powered careers in big cities like New York and Los Angeles for a chance at the good life in this one-of-a-kind mountain town. If you’ve never been to Idaho’s Wood River Valley, here are a handful of experiences to expect…and which may just turn you into Sun Valley’s newest year-round resident. It’s happened plenty of times before!
Searching for Sun Valley
Sometime around December 1, we started asking our fans and followers what it was that they sought. Adrenaline, adventure, camaraderie, serenity, pristine beauty, family: the things that make a life worth living, knowing that the one place where you can find all of this is here in Sun Valley. We had over 2,000 photos posted with the #SeekSunValley hashtag and as the season wrapped up this past weekend we thought we would put a little highlight gallery together as a small retrospective on a fantastic season. Thank you to all of you for your photos and enthusiasm this winter. We will keep going with more #SeekSunValley this summer so don’t stop sharing the love!
Spring in a mountain ski town frequently goes unsung and frequently nearly unnoticed. It’s not uncommon for skiers to forget that the best skiing is right up to even after the mountain closes, as dreams of sunny beaches or rolling vineyards in lands far off frequently enchant those who wish spring would just do her thing and get on with it. But spring is awesome and a time when renewed energy for stretching the legs and the mind in new directions spawns a whole new level of creativity. So check out these fun, educational, artistic, or even downright goofy things you don’t want to miss out on in Sun Valley this spring! 1. The End of the Season Party It’s a bit sad when the season ends, but Sun Valley rally’s like no one else to close out a great year of spending days one end with good friends. Just don’t leave the top of the mountain too soon…(photo: Mark Oliver) The season ender is always one of the highlights/low points of being a skier/snowboarder. You’re sad because it’s over but somehow that makes you even more fired up to get after it and celebrate it properly. And Sun …
March in Sun Valley is the best. The short, cold days of winter slowly fade away as the sun climbs higher in the sky. The daily routine slows down dramatically with the timing of snow conditions. So take it from me, first off, there is no rush. Start the day out right and drop by your local coffee house in town for an expertly made cappuccino before hitting the slopes. After that caffeine hits your veins, the day will start to blossom. It’s the time of year when the snow begins to soften around midday and you take comfort in knowing that it’s possible after a day of riding to slide your feet into the luxurious embrace of flip flops while having an après-ski beer on the outdoor patio at Lefty’s, Apples, or Warm Springs Lodge, sharing in the camaraderie of good friends. At times it’s a challenge to just live in the moment. So I advise relishing every second of every day.
A smattering of things you might not have know about Sun Valley, Idaho.
This group represents the majority of people you’ll meet in Sun Valley. They come from all walks of life, each with their own story of how they ended up here and what they do in order to stay. They’re the chefs, bartenders and waitresses, lift operators, ski and yoga instructors, and everyone else who works to live here and preferably keeps their days free so they can ski or ride as much of their waking lives as possible. You’ll recognize them by their wide smiles, goggle tans, and that sparkle in their eyes. They’re living the dream; their life is your vacation.
Earning turns the old fashioned way, one slogging skin track at a time, is how the original skiers to Sun Valley carved their way across the landscape, but today there exists a magic carpet ride to blower pow paradise, Sun Valley Heliskiing. Occasionally lottery tickets turn up winners, and as luck would have it mine finally came in. I am going to do the best I can to not sound smug, but when you get it this good, it’s hard not to brag.
Sun Valley has long been known around the Labor Day time of year as the home of one of the most remarkable non-motorized parades in the country, Wagon Days. But last year, local endurance athlete Rebecca Rusch, brought a new sort of twist on the non-motorized parade to town, Rebecca's Private Idaho. Heading into the great wide open a rider crosses into another world. Wildhorse Canyon meets the Copper Basin. Capitalizing on the lack of tarmac and abundance of top notch gravel roads which criss cross the county, this event run in the European Grand Fondo tradition, sends riders on an odyssey without the pressure of needing to compete, but inviting them to choose their own level of adventure. As many sports do, road cycling has evolved over the recent years with a new category whose machines make riding dirt roads, well, kind of cool and fun. Why is there a picture of an ass in this post? Read on, it will make sense. Wagon Days parade entrant #22. For the second year in a row, the four legged non-motorized set was joined by the two legged two wheeled contingent adding a new wrinkle to an old horse. …
Sure Sun Valley might technically be considered a desert region, but believe me, there is no shortage of natural water sources. Keep in mind I’m still far from the highly acclaimed local status but if a fellow Out-of-Towner asked me, my top 5 spots thus far would have to be:
July 4, 2014: For weeks I’d been hearing about how ‘hard’ Sun Valley goes on the day of America’s independence. “Just wait for the Fourth”, people kept saying. So after experiencing the 4th of July madness firsthand, I’m here to tell the tale.