It wasn't all that long ago that someone at some ski area somewhere realized that there might be something better to do with a ski hill during the summer months than just letting the lifts sit still.
Ski areas everywhere have introduced summer recreation programs, with many building full-on mountain-bike trail systems across the slopes. Some are even kind enough to offer you and your bike a ride to the top on those very lifts that carried you and your skis a few months ago.
Brundage Mountain in McCall just happens to be one of those resorts, and the area kicked off its summer season with all of its more than 20 miles of trails open, as well as its Blue Bird high-speed quad.
Anyone who wants to take his or her bike to the top can ride the chairlift for $30 for a full-day pass, or $15 for a one-ride pass. Ages 7-14 and 70 and older can ride for $20 for the day or $7 for one trip. Bike and equipment rentals are available on site.
Of course, you don't have to have a bike to take advantage of the lift to enjoy the view. Scenic chairlift rides cost $10 for adults or $5 for ages 7-14 or 70 and older.
Those looking for a new adventure can check out the just-opened four-cross course, which Brundage installed over the spring. The course offers head-to-head riding for the competitive at heart.
Summer hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Fridays through Sundays, but the resort has added a few bonus days for the Fourth of July holiday with hours on Wednesday, July 4, and Thursday, July 5.
Get more info at brundage.com.
If you can't quite get away to McCall, Bogus Basin Mountain Recreation Area not only has its own mountain-bike and hiking trails and disc golf course, but it's all about the laid-back party this summer.
Bogus is hosting a barbecue on the patio of the J.R. Simplot Lodge every weekend throughout the summer. From 11 a.m.-4 p.m. each Saturday and Sunday, the public can purchase grilled items like burgers, chicken sandwiches or hot dogs, as well as both alcoholic and nonalcoholic drinks.
Public bathrooms are also available at the lodge for hikers and bikers.
Bogus has also teamed up with the folks at the Boise Department of Parks and Recreation to offer a series of summer camps for ages 9-16. That's right, parents, you can kick your kids' butts outside for awhile with camps that let them explore the forest around the ski area, as well as one that includes an overnight stay for the older kids.
Get more details at bogusbasin.org.