New Easement Will Connect More of Boise Foothills

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A 12.6-mile trail easement could link Polecat Gulch Reserve to the Boise Front if approved by the Boise City Council at the July 15 meeting, beginning at 6 p.m.

According to a press release, the trail would connect Northwest Boise with the Shafer Butte trail system at Bogus Basin. The land is owned by Daniel's Creek Land, LLC—a subsidiary of Grossman Company Properties. The holding covers almost 3,300 acres, making it the biggest continuous private land holding in the Boise Foothills.

Grossman Company Properties is providing the easement to the city for free, indefinitely.

"The new trail easement provides links to some of the city's most loved open space areas such as Polecat Gulch Reserve and Stack Rock Reserve," Mayor Dave Bieter said in the release. "We are grateful to the Grossman family for their commitment to improving recreational opportunities and the health of our community."

Grossman Company Properties founded Hidden Springs in the early '90s and developed Eagle River, the 91-acre mixed-use business park in Eagle. The company acts as a real estate developer, owner and manager and has offices in Boise and Phoenix.

"The greatest gift my father and mother gave our family was moving us to Idaho at a very young age," said John Grossman, vice president of development projects in the news release. "And with that move came a strong and undying respect for the beauty and vastness of Idaho's rural lands. As avid outdoorsmen, and long term land owners, it has been a great honor to work closely with the city of Boise to establish a trail easement across our Daniel's Creek land for the benefit of local Idahoans while preserving our land use rights."

Money to build connecting trails would come from the $10 million serial levy passed by voters in 2001. With the $1.8 million left, efforts focus on protecting critical habitat, riparian corridors, and historic sites, as well as building potential trail connections from east to west across the Boise Front. The trails would be planned out and built by Ridge to Rivers staff members, the Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Forest Service. 

The easement agreement with Daniel's Creek LLC states that trails would be open for foot traffic, mountain biking and horseback riding. The use of recreational vehicles like snowmobiles and dirt bikes, as well as competitive races and programs by schools or organizations, would require written consent from the land owners.