Across Idaho, winter adventurers and yurts go hand in hand!
Did you know Idaho has the most yurts-per-person in the country?
The appeal of these a circular Mongolian-style yurts is strong, especially in winter.
Just imagine looking out of the frosty window of a yurt and seeing the light glowing over the surrounding snowy mountain peaks at dawn, or at sunset. It’s cold out there but as you pull yourself out of your sleeping bag inside a yurt that is 70 degrees from the heat of the wood stove, you realize there is no place you would rather be.
Whether you choose to venture far into the backcountry, or stay closer to Boise, there is a yurt with your name on it.
Yurts provide a splendid way for snowshoers and Nordic skiers to camp in the backcountry in the winter. They are equipped with bunks, cookware, a propane stove, and firewood for easy and convenient overnight stays. You simply need to bring your personal items, sleeping bags, and food.
The yurts, structurally, are all basically the same—circular, Mongolian-style domed tents about 20 to 30 feet in diameter. Most have plywood floors, canvas-and-lattice sidewalls, a fireplace or wood stove, and a skylight.
There is something for everyone.
For example, Sun Valley Trekking offers a number of guided experiences with unique yurts and huts to match the terrain. The Sawtooths, Smoky Mountains, Boulder Mountains, and Pioneers are all experienced up close with each yurt offering a different scenic landscape, varying degrees of snowshoe/ski/hike difficulty, and the occasional sauna. How does a sauna sound after a day shoeing the trails?
The company operates six different backcountry huts in the wild mountains of Central Idaho. Sun Valley Trekking is rated one of the top hut-to-hut ski operations in North America, and these yurts are ideally located in stunning mountain locations surrounded by pristine snow and phenomenal backcountry ski terrain. Each hut is a little different, some are Mongolian-styled round yurts and some are western-styled wall tents. All of the huts are cozy structures outfitted with wood stoves for heat (including firewood), propane stoves for cooking, fully outfitted kitchens and table-ware, solar power for lights and charging your widgets, bunks with comfortable mattresses, books, games, magazines, outhouses and wood fired saunas or hot-tubs.
Think of it as luxury in the backcountry, simple as that.
For those who are looking for an experience that doesn’t require a long trek, there is the Sunrise Retreat. These are located in Idaho’s Payette River Mountains, about 2 hours north from Boise and minutes from the Tamarack Resort. It’s just 1/4 mile from the parking lot, making this an easy option for those who aren’t up for an extended hike.
Have a great adventure – and bring your Red Fox gear. Yurts are rustic, a modern adaptation of ancient shelters used by Central Asian nomads for centuries. Basically, think of a yurt as an elevated Mongolian teepee – with a few modern touches. Whether you ski in, snowshoe, trek, or catch a ride on a snowmobile, a few days in a yurt will do you good.
Here are a few sites to help you find the right yurt adventure for you:
Photos Courtesy of Visit Idaho, Sun Valley Trekking, and Visit Sun Valley.
Red Fox recommendations for heading out to a yurt