Update: Morningstar has been designated as downhill-only.
Bogus Basin Mountain Recreation Area’s best-known summer trail is Around the Mountain, the Ridge to Rivers trail that circles around the outside of the ski area. It’s nearly 10 miles.
For a shorter, easier trek that still will get the heart rate up and provide some stunning scenery, try combining the Deer Point, Brewers Byway and Morningstar trails for a 5.7-mile loop around the inside of the ski area’s primary bowl. Suitable for hiking, mountain biking and trail running, the series of trails includes dense forest, wildflowers, open views and rocks for a little extra challenge. It’s definitely a much different experience than you’ll find in the lower Foothills.
Deer Point is 2.4 miles of climbing from Simplot Lodge — a lung-searing start to the loop, particularly at Bogus Basin’s elevation. There’s no time to ease into the ride or hike. The trail gains about 800 feet of elevation. It sweeps through much of the terrain skiers access from the Deer Point Express lift but doesn’t actually reach the top of the lift.
Join the Brewers Byway trail at the junction for a cross-country journey toward Pioneer Lodge. The forested and occasionally rocky trail covers 1.2 miles and drops about 100 feet, making it a welcome respite after the climb.
Morningstar drops from Pioneer Lodge back to the starting point at Simplot. The series of switchbacks takes trail users about 700 feet down the mountain in 2.1 miles. On a bike, be prepared for a few tight turns.
This route shares a start and finish with Around the Mountain, giving users a way to test their preparedness for the longer trail. The Around the Mountain route branches off from Deer Point during the initial climb. The Morningstar trail is the finishing segment for Around the Mountain.
Getting there: Park at Simplot Lodge, which is 16 miles from Boise on Bogus Basin Road. The trails are accessible seven days a week even though the lift only runs on weekends. More information at bogusbasin.org.