Wine Tasting & Giraffe Sightings in Idaho
I’m torn between recapping my amazing Idaho weekend and taking advantage of my free afternoon for a nap…..I’ve woken up at 4:45am for the past three days so that I could run with the Boise Elite team during sunrise. The trails and the company are so worth it! But by 3pm, I’m dragging.
Fortunately it’s “Double Punch Wednesday” at one of the local coffee shops so I just finished off my – wait for it – sugarfree peanut butter iced americano. I saw the flavor and I HAD TO. It was amazing and would probably be even more killer with some mocha thrown in too. Let’s see how far this caffeine will carry me into this recap post because I have a lotttt to share.
I was still living in California on Mother’s Day this year, so I never properly celebrated with my mom. This weekend, we found a local winery and vineyard to spend a girlie afternoon. Ste. Chapelle winery is about 30 minutes outside of Boise, sitting in the hills above Caldwell, ID. We drove through miles of farmland with different types of crops, white fences, horses and barns before winding up through the vineyard and parking in front of the rotunda-style winery.
We started with a tasting. We each got to pick out 5 different wines from the wine list. Just for fun, we decided to separately check off our five picks and then see how many same flavors we chose. We ended up with four of the same wines! I usually stick with sweet white wines, so I decided to be adventurous and order a glass of the Petit Verdot, a sweeter red. My mom ordered a glass of the Chenin Blanc and a Pecan Brie plate with apple slices and multi-grain crackers.
We sat upstairs in the loft with our wine and snacks and gorgeous views for a couple of hours. We rounded out the belated Mother’s Day celebration with manicures and iced teas.
Now that I have a running group to train with again, I’ve been prioritizing my running workouts over strength training and HIIT. Last week I tried out my first “speed work” in months with a set of ten 60-second sprints with equal recovery. I ended up running my long run by myself, but it’s a complete 180 from my long runs in Riverside. Boise is such an active community, so my 10 miles along the Green Belt (a paved bike path that runs along the Boise River) was filled with joggers, walkers, strollers, and bikers.
It was about the 8-mile mark that I ran into something unforgettable. As I looked up to my right, I saw two moving shapes among the trees. I could NOT believe my eyes when I saw a pair of giraffe heads staring at me. I had to snap a few pictures and share on Instagram. Otherwise I think my friends and family would think that all the running was starting to affect my head….giraffes aren’t native to Idaho ;) I had run along the backside of the Boise Zoo!
A tall solid fence with some barb-wire on top attempted to conceal the giraffe exhibit, but two of the zoo animals were enjoying their view of the Green Belt and peeking out at me while munching on their leaves. That is definitely one of the more memorable things I’ve seen on a run.
On Sunday, we tried a popular brunch spot in Eagle, Idaho called Joe Momma’s. It’s been very obvious for us Californians that the pace of life up here is much slower. But the two-hour brunch took slow to a new level. We had looong wait times for a table, for our coffees, for our food, and then for the bill. My side order of oatmeal could feed a family of 5!
With full bellies, we hopped in my dad’s 4Runner and followed the Payette River up north. We drove out of Boise and into the rural small towns that line Highway 55 to Cascade, Idaho. The river was full of kayakers and tubers, and we pulled over a couple times so that I could snap some pictures.
Once we got to Lake Cascade, we just parked and took in the peaceful views. Afterwards, we drove the entire perimeter of the lake which was a dirt and gravel road. The electric fences next to the road kind of freaked us out. It reminded us of the sci-fi show Wayward Pines (which actually does take place in Idaho!) and we wondered just what the fence was keeping out….
We made it to Donnelly, and it was only a matter of time before we were all ready for some iced coffees. There aren’t any coffee chains in this little coffee town, which is fine by us! We found a little yellow house that has been converted into a coffee and gift shop.
We sipped our americano’s for the rest of the 90 beautiful miles back home.
Monday morning was another early morning, beginning with a sunrise run in the foothills with my new Boise running team. I absolutely love starting my day this way. Afterwards, I had back-to-back clients at the gym again which left me exhausted. But Tuesday was one of the best days I’ve had in Boise thus far. I’ll save that for another post though ;)