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Parks and Rides From Bogus Basin to Idaho City

New programs look to make routes easier

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Hoping to glean some funds from state and federal grant pools, the Idaho City Ranger District has applied for a total of $170,000 in grants from the Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation. The district wants a shot at funds netted from state user fees and federal endowments.  

"Annually we open up for applications for those grants from those programs ... we have state and federal agencies that appeal to the program for that funding," said Jennifer Blazek, communications director at IDPR.

The applications are reviewed by citizens associated with the uses and areas affected, who then prioritize the funding based on how it would benefit their community, since their user fees go toward the project.  

ICRD hopes to use the money on four separate projects: education on off-highway motor vehicle use and the new travel management rule with signs and literature, brush and survey miles of trail near the basin, blasting and maintenance of the Crooked River trail, and signage on the 55-mile Idaho City Area Trail System.  

But maybe you don't ride an ATV. You would, however, sell a kidney to buy a season ski pass at Bogus Basin. The problem is, you don't have any money left over to put gas in your car. A survey conducted last summer by Community Planning Association found that many people would like to carpool to Bogus Basin but did not want to ride with strangers and lacked a way to meet potential ridesharers. That is no longer the case.

Valley Regional Transit has launched three new rideshare programs to better connect people offering and seeking rides. They are all web-based, using Facebook, yahoo groups and a dedicated message board, ridesharetobogus.org.

To use the programs, aspiring ridesharers can "join" or "like" the "Ride Share to Bogus" social networking groups or just post on the board their desire to share or catch a ride.

The dedicated site was made by snowbomb.com, who made a similar board with over 3,000 users in the Lake Tahoe area. It's specifically designed for riders and drivers to seek out like-minded and scheduled cohorts, providing search fields for snowboarders, tele-skiers, skiers, smokers, non-smokers, men, women, dates, meetings places and more.

The programs are considered experimental, in that VRT is trying them all to see what to works. But VRT representative Steve Stuebner says if something else comes along, they're willing to try that, too.