Day 1 : Philly to Boise

Trip Start Aug 11, 2011
1
8
Trip End Aug 18, 2011


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Where I stayed
What I did
Rose Garden
Bittercreek Ale House
Zeppole Bakery

Flag of United States  , Idaho
Thursday, August 11, 2011

Today began with a 3:30 a.m. wake-up call at Kathy's house before a relatively easy hour long drive to the Philadelphia airport for our 6:30 a.m. flight. We made it just in time to check our luggage, do a quick bathroom stop and board the plane. Philadelphia International airport has free wi-fi.

We had a 5 hour and 20 minute flight to San Francisco. They showed the movie Thor on our flight but ofcourse our sound was broken so we couldn't actually watch the movie! I ate a granola and yogurt on the flight and tried to sleep as much as possible. 

We had a two hour layover in San Fran before our connection to Boise. We ate at Willow Creek Grill in the airport and had California burgers and fries. I was able to get on the wi-fi at SFO but it was one of the slowest wi-fi connections I've ever encountered. I managed to get through some emails before our next flight. 

It was an hour and a half flight to Boise. Boise also has wi-fi. We got our luggage with no problem and called a shuttle to take us to our hotel. We were staying at Hotel 43 for the night in the downtown area of Boise. 

Our hotel was very nice, it was obvious that it was a more upscale hotel. We got a good deal on the room rate through Canyons, the outfitter we were going down the Salmon River with. We had a bit of a wait until our room was ready. We played around on their wi-fi and selected somewhere to eat for dinner. 

Once we were able to drop our luggage off in our room we went for a walk to the Boise River Greenbelt. The greenbelt is a really nice area with river access, jogging, biking and hiking paths alongside the Boise River. We walked along the river for a while took pictures, watched people tube down the river and fish.

Next we went to Julia Davis park which was nearby. We took pictures at the fountain and of the many types of roses on display. Its a very pretty place and would be a lovely setting for a wedding.

We decided it was time for dinner and wandered through downtown Boise until we found the Bittercreek Ale House. The reviews on both yelp and foursquare were good so we decided to check it out. 

The Bittercreek Ale House looked like an old fashioned saloon with beautiful hard wood floors and bar. It was packed when we got there both inside and out. We managed to get a table inside the restaurant. The wait-staff are 20-30 something and struck me as the outdoors or bohemian artist types. They had various pre-season football games playing on flat screen tvs. The crowd looked to be a mix of afterwork locals and tourists alike. 

I ordered a Snake River Lager, which I had before while in Jackson Hole, WY. I also ordered a Classic Cobb Salad and it was delicious! As Kathy and I sat there and ate our meal we talked about what we thought the trip would be like, what we thought about running a river running double its normal volume and how it would be to paddle and camp for that many days. 

As we left the restaurant we could see that the downtown area had really come to life. There were people outside, riding bikes, eating at the outdoor cafes. It was really nice. We decided to find somewhere for dessert because it was hot! We walked around until we found the Zeppole Bakery Company. They had some interesting ice cream flavors. I settled on their grasshopper ice cream which was alot like mint-chocolate chip. They also had lots of baked good, breads and soups as well. The bakery had wifi so I checked some email while we ate our ice cream and Kathy ordered a coffee. 

We walked around downtown Boise for a bit looking at the different shops before returning to the hotel for the night to shower and rest up for tomorrow. 

We didn't get to see a ton of Boise but my impression is that it is a beautiful outdoors city set amid arid landscape and mountains. The greenbelt was a nice area and its wonderful to have a river cut through the heart of a major city. There are many interesting shops and restaurants to check out. 
 
Boise Info:
 
Hotel 43 info: http://www.hotel43.com/

Boise River Greenbelt: http://www.cityofboise.org/Departments/Parks/ParksAndFacilities/Parks/page18151.aspx

Julia Davis Park: http://juliadavispark.org/

Julia Davis Rose Garden :http://www.cityofboise.org/Departments/Parks/Reservations/ReservableSites/Gardens/page3801.aspx

Bittercreek Ale House: http://bcrfl.com/bittercreek/

Zeppole Bakery: http://www.zeppolebakery.com/
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