The Ridge to Rivers partnership, consisting of the City of Boise, Ada County, the Bureau of Land Management Four Rivers Field Office, the Boise National Forest and the Idaho Department of Fish and Game, received more than 4,400 responses to the 2021 trail user survey that closed last month – by far the most engagement on a Ridge to Rivers survey to date. We appreciate the valuable feedback we received and have learned a lot about user experiences on the trails in the Boise Foothills. Initial survey results are now posted online for the public to view on the Ridge to Rivers website.
One of the goals of this year’s survey was to solicit feedback on some proposed pilot management strategies to improve user experiences on the trails. Based on user feedback, Ridge to Rivers is proposing the following strategies be implemented on a trial basis starting as early as April 2021 and continuing into fall:
- Lower Hulls Gulch Trail #29 Proposal – On even numbered days of the month, the trail would be closed to all downhill bike travel (open to hikers, horseback riders and uphill mountain bikers) for the duration of the pilot. On odd numbered days of the month, the trail would only be open to downhill bike traffic (closed to all other users) for the duration of the pilot. Please see link to follow up survey below*
- Polecat Loop Trail #81 Proposal – All trail users would be required to travel in one direction (counter-clockwise) throughout the duration of the pilot.
- Around the Mountain Trail #98 Proposal – All users would be required to travel in one direction (counter-clockwise) throughout the duration of the pilot.
- Bucktail Trail #20A Proposal – Separation of use for mountain bikers and pedestrians. Please see link to follow up survey below*
The partnership is seeking further feedback on the proposed pilot change to Lower Hulls Gulch Trail #29 and the creation of a pedestrian only route near Bucktail Trail #20A. *Click here to respond to a short follow-up survey related to these proposed management strategies. There is also a new survey question related to downhill mountain biking trails in the foothills. This updated survey will close on Monday, March 29. Results of the supplemental survey questions will be made available to the public after the feedback period closes.
“The use of our trail system continues to grow, and the needs of our users continue to evolve. We are committed to exploring different management strategies to improve user experience in the Boise Foothills,” said Doug Holloway, Boise Parks and Recreation director. “We appreciate the feedback we have already received and will continue listening to users as we manage such a unique and popular trail system.”
The 2021 pilot program strategies outlined above, along with the overall survey results, will be included in a future report to the Boise City Council. The City of Boise is the lead partner in the Ridge to Rivers partnership, and Boise Parks and Recreation staff will be seeking council feedback and support before implementing any pilot strategies this year. Thank you for your patience as this process is completed. Ridge to Rivers will continue to update the public as pilot management strategies are refined and a start date is set.
Other survey feedback, including data related to muddy trails enforcement and controlled dog off-leash trails, will be analyzed and discussed with the Ridge to Rivers partnership as we work to propose new policies, add new trails and outline education efforts related to trail use.
For more information on Ridge to Rivers, daily trail condition reports and trail etiquette, visit our website.