Bogus Basin Road

Bogus Basin Road: What to Know

From summertime hiking and biking to winter mountain access, Bogus Basin Road is a year-round avenue for many outdoor recreation opportunities. The 16-mile stretch of road from Boise, Idaho offers access to a number of of multi-use trails, from mountain biking, hiking, and horseback riding to snowshoeing, alpine skiing, snowboarding, and Nordic skiing.

Here are some answers to the community’s frequently asked questions about Bogus Basin Road’s maintenance and management.

Who Is Responsible For Bogus Basin Road?

Bogus Basin Road is public infrastructure residing in two counties, Ada County and Boise County. The first 8.8 miles of the road are located in Ada County, while miles 8.8 – 16 are located in Boise County.

Highlighted image of Bogus Basin Road separated by Boise County and Ada County Line

Snow Removal Vs. Surface Maintenance

Maintaining government-owned infrastructure, like Bogus Basin Road, includes making improvements to the physical road including paving, installing guardrails, patching potholes, shoulder grading, etc. Boise and Ada County are both responsible for the sections of road that fall within their county lines. Due to the remote proximity of Bogus Basin Road to Boise County and the infrastructure necessary to properly maintain the road, Boise County has an agreement with Ada County to manage the upper section of Bogus Basin Road.

In the winter months, Bogus Basin has agreed to remove snow and spread sand on the 32 miles (16 up/16 down) of Bogus Basin Road surface for Ada County and, by proxy, Boise County. Whether traveling to ski tour, snowshoe, or visit Bogus Basin, our agreement with Ada County ensures the safest driving conditions possible for all properly equipped outdoor recreationists.

Bogus Basin Snow Removal

Managing snow removal on mountain roads is an extensive task that requires an entire team and fleet of heavy machinery. When it snows, Bogus Basin road crews work tirelessly to plow and sand the road – around the clock during weather events – to provide the best traction possible. Our extensive fleet of road maintenance equipment includes three plow trucks, a rotary snowblower, two front loaders, a road grader, various sanding equipment, and, at times, other heavy machinery.

When the snow stops, we don’t…we work year-round – In the warmer months the plows leave their blades in the shop and spend all summer hauling sand up the mountain, from Boise, to prepare for the upcoming winter.

Bogus Basin Snow Plow On A Snowy Day - Bogus Basin Road, 16 miles from Boise, Idaho Photo by Luke Tokunaga

Law Enforcement and Incident Response

In short, county and state law enforcement are responsible for enforcing traffic laws, responding to incidents, and enacting closures on Bogus Basin Road.

Often, guests reach out to Bogus Basin for support on traffic law violation recourse, information about road blockages, or guidance when in a precarious situation. Bogus Basin does not have any ability to enforce the rules of the road, nor do we have a say when or why a government agency closes the road.

We always advise that if a guest needs help while on Bogus Basin Road, they reach out to local enforcement or support services like a tow company.

Did Someone Say Gondola?

You may recall an April Fool’s joke from 2019 announcing a gondola to Bogus Basin from Boise. This continues to be a frequent guest suggestion and has been for many years. In response to the 2019 April Fool’s joke, we detailed the logistics of what would be the world’s longest single-stage gondola.

Clocking in at around 10 miles, this record-breaking gondola from Boise to Bogus Basin would take at least an hour to ride each way and be extremely expensive to install. Our original estimates were in the $50,000,000 ballpark, but based on the UDOT project for a gondola up little Cottonwood, the Boise to Bogus Basin would likely be in the $200,000,000 plus category to build. Additionally, the gondola would cross over public and private land which would require private land owners’ permission, various public permits, construction of new roads for evacuation, and countless easements.

A gondola from town to the mountain is a fun idea sure, feasible, not as much.

But We Want It

Some people question why we “joke” about improvements that some of our guests would like to see happen. We select topics that explore potential solutions that are frequently suggested for scenarios that are often misunderstood. Our goal is to use April Fool’s Day to capture our audience’s attention and explore, educate, and inform.

In the case of our 2024 April Fool’s joke, expanding and straightening the road is something that Bogus Basin has no control over. Would it be beneficial to our guests? Sure, but like the Gondola, it is completely infeasible, and we highlight the reality of the project.

Catch Up On Previous April Fool’s Posts

About Bogus Basin Bogus Basin Mountain Recreation Area is a 501(C)(3) organization dedicated to engaging the community to provide accessible, affordable, and fun year-round mountain recreation and education. Opened in 1942, Bogus Basin offers 2,600 acres of daytime skiable terrain, and 165 acres for night skiing; eleven lifts and three people-mover carpets; an 800-foot tubing hill. The Nordic Center offers 37 kilometers of groomed trails. Environmental education and community outreach programs serve over 20,000 individuals annually, primarily youth. Summer activities include the Glade Runner, a 4,251 foot mountain coaster, The Mine Shaft Challenge course, mountain biking, events, hiking and chairlift service for hike and bike transport. Bogus Basin is located 16.5 miles north of Boise, Idaho and operates under a special use permit with the Boise National Forest.