Hiking and Mountain Biking#3 in Best Things To Do in Sun Valley
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Though the Sawtooth National Recreation Area is the most well-known wilderness area near Ketchum, there are multiple trails of varying difficulty in the immediate vicinity of town. If you're looking for a great workout, try the 5.3-mile Bald Mountain Trail, which winds up Bald Mountain with multiple switchbacks and rewards you handsomely at the top with panoramic views of the town and surrounding countryside. This trail is accessible in the summer from the bottom of the mountain, and bikers can take lifts up via the Sun Valley ski resort to enjoy downhill rides on car-free paths.
If you're looking for something at an intermediate level, try the Adams Gulch Loop. This trail is most popular among mountain bikers; however, it can also be used by hikers, dog walkers and horseback riders. This iconic Sun Valley trail winds through Ketchum's countryside for approximately 7 miles, and it is relatively flat. Throughout your walk or ride, you'll notice outstanding views of the Griffin Butte, the Pioneer Mountains and the town of Ketchum itself as you adventure through aspen trees and rolling hills. Recent travelers said this trail was fun and breathtaking, but they noted that the path can get crowded (especially if you're on a bike) during the summer months.
Meanwhile, the 5.8-mile Fox Creek Trail is a favorite stroll for both locals and tourists in the area. The multiuse trail is perfect for mountain biking and hiking, and it is easy to access from Ketchum. The walk or ride offers stunning views of the surrounding wilderness and mountains as you travel right next to fields of wildflowers and the Big Wood River. Reviewers said the trail offers a nice and easy climb with a delightful downhill stretch at the end. Plus, the trail facilities can now accommodate horseback riders. If you're looking for an even shorter outdoor adventure in the surrounding area, check out the Chocolate Gulch Trail for a scenic ride or hike.
Both the Adams Gulch Loop and the Fox Creek Trail are free to access, and they are easy to reach from town. Both trailheads are located off of Highway 75 less than 10 miles north of Ketchum, and there are information kiosks, toilets and parking areas at both trailheads. Both paths are open year- round, weather permitting.
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#1 Sun Valley Ski Resort
If you're visiting Ketchum in the winter, it's hard to resist the powder and astounding vistas offered by Sun Valley ski resort, where about 220 inches of snowfall accumulate every year. Experienced skiers and snowboarders will love the nearly 100 trails at Bald Mountain. From groomed runs to glades to bowls to terrain parks, this massive winter wonderland will keep you entertained for days. And if you're just starting out, you'll find easy trails and group lessons at nearby Dollar Mountain.
But even if you aren't here to downhill ski, you can still have a great time. Cross-country skiers can enjoy more than 25 miles of Nordic trails, and ice skaters will love the outdoor rink. Plus, you can book a sleigh ride with your family or just relax in the lodge with a hot drink. Recent visitors applauded Sun Valley for its fast-moving lift lines and said it's a great family destination thanks to its variety of runs. The ski season generally begins in late November and continues until late April.
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