In the southwest section of the state is the Pond Creek Refuge. This is an area favored by migratory and wading birds so it's popular with bird watchers.
The largest is the 160,000 acre White River National Wildlife Refuge which runs for 90 miles along the White River.
They all have primitive campsites available for those of you who enjoy roughing it a little when you go camping.
These areas are home to a number of animals such as black bear, whitetail deer and bald eagles so be sure to bring your camera.
Activities include volleyball, horseshoes, horseback riding, hiking, mountain biking. Go floating down the river.
Take a boat out on lake and do a little fishing. You can even try some mountain climbing, a day trip to famous Sun Valley or just relax and get to know each other around a campfire.
Even when you aren't being entertained in some manner by all of the attractions, it’s a really pleasant vacation spot. Everything there was beautiful, especially during the summer. I’d have to say my most vivid memory was riding the Alpengeist.
It’s probably the most awesome roller coaster I have ever ridden. My parents originally wouldn't let me go on it without one of them on it, but then they both chickened out and got in a fight with each other about who was going to go on it with me.
They refused to let me ride by myself. Apparently my father lost because he later met me towards the back of the line and muttered some swears under his breath at me for putting him through with it. Well, neither of us was disappointed afterward. Well, maybe my father was, but I’m pretty sure he left the ride in some sort of shock because I practically had to drag him away afterward!
Anyways, I could practically live there if I had a sleeping bag of sorts. Lots of fun! This was definitely one our family’s most fun vacation ideas. - By Matt from Williamsburg
A wood-burning stove was just right for the cool mornings and I loved sleeping under a blanket in the summer. While the Maine seacoast is undeniably wonderful, Maine’s many lakes are equally beautiful and a lot less crowded in July and August. My vacations don’t have to be filled with going here and there for sightseeing. Settling into a scenic place for a week suffices. - By Carolyn from Mass
So below are my top 3 reasons why people should vacation in Sun Valley/Ketchum:
1) The mountain biking-this place really makes others look weak. Over 100 miles of well groomed single track, and everything from the hardest of the hardcore (think 3,000 vertical feet up Bald Mountain) to leisurely rides through Aspen trees. The best part is that you can hop on a trail literally 5 minutes from downtown-so no long drives to get to the good stuff.
There are free mountain bike group rides and clinics once a week for those new to the spot. Four bike shops in town can rent you top of the line gear, and let you know how the trails are riding that day. (Super local secret - Fox Creek Trail is the best. But be careful-it’s one way)
2) The food-for a small town, Sun Valley/Ketchum has a lot of restaurants. It has some fancy, white tablecloth restaurants, but to really see the locals go to Grumpy’s. This is a 30 year institution, with no phone, cash only, and very greasy burgers. It also has very big beer. After a day of mountain bike riding, this is the place to go. Plus its right on the main road, so you can sit outside and watch everyone drive by.
3) The relaxation-with a 20 minute drive, there are a bunch of hidden, mountain lakes. Some require a short hike, but others you can drive right to. It’s the perfect way to spend a summer afternoon-floating on a quite lake, soaking up the sun. - By Bronwyn Patterson