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Trail Runner magazine calls Sun Valley ‘top trail town’

Trail Runner magazine acknowledges Sun Valley as a “Top Trail Town” in its October 2012 issue. The article dubs Sun Valley as a “place that lives up to its name.”

The story states that the Sun Valley area is known for providing “year-round Vitamin-D dosages” and for its “roughly 400 miles of single track.”

The “top trails” listed in the article are the 8-mile Pioneer Cabin loop and the 19-mile Alice Lake and Toxaway Lake loop. The story also lists the “top races” in the valley, mentioning the Dollar Mountain 10K Trail Run held in June, the Backcountry Run held in July, the Harriman Trail 10-mile Run held in September, and the Trail Creek 12K Trail Run held in October.

Hailey resident Hank Dart and former valley resident Andy Jones-Wilkins, both avid Sun Valley area runners, are quoted in the article.

“It’s hard to imagine a better place to be a trail runner,” Dart says in the article.

Trail Runner Magazine printed two of Dart’s photographs, which feature Sun Valley area trails.

“I love the huge variety of trails in the valley, as well as the immediate access to the backcountry, both in Hailey and in Ketchum,” Dart told the Idaho Mountain Express in an interview.

Other towns listed in the story are Port Angeles, Wash.; Sedona, Ariz.; New York, N.Y.; Mountain View, Ark.; Harpers Ferry, W. Va.; Eureka, Calif. and Jasper, Alberta.


Ski team director of development resigns

The Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation has announced that Director of Development Alex Sundali is leaving the organization to join Silverback Learning, a Boise-based firm that specializes in educational software.

Sundali said she has worked for the ski team since December 2010. She will remain based in Ketchum, working for Silverback Learning from home.

“It was a difficult decision to leave the Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation,” Sundali said. “It is a wonderful organization. I remain, however, a passionate and devoted supporter of education and that is where my interests lie.”

Two of Sundali’s three children, Taylor and Daniel, were members of the foundation’s Nordic ski team and went on to compete at Middlebury College. Sundali’s daugther Anja was a competitive swimmer.

Sundali said Wednesday that the ski team has not yet hired a replacement. 


Land Trust announces challenge grant 

If the Wood River Land Trust can raise $360,000 by Dec. 31, an anonymous donor and members of the board of directors will contribute an additional 50 cents for every dollar donated. 

Meeting the goal would give the Wood River Land Trust an additional $540,000 for new and existing projects such as restoration and preservation of Boxcar Bend and Draper preserves along the Big Wood River and Porcupine Creek Preserve in the Little Wood Valley. 

For more information, contact Director of Development, Daphne Muehle at


Declining labor force lowers jobless rate

Fewer people seeking available jobs was enough to nudge Idaho’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate down a tenth of a percentage point to 7.4 percent in August.

In Blaine County, the August unemployment rate was estimated at 6.3 percent, down from 6.7 percent in July and 8.5 percent in August 2011. Of an estimated labor force of 12,275 people in Blaine County, 778 were unemployed last month, the Department of Labor said.

August’s jobless rate was the lowest in over three years, but it was also the third straight month Idaho’s labor force has contracted. The loss of more than 5,500 from the workforce through the summer–the largest three-month exodus of workers on record—left the labor force at its lowest level since January. 

Although the national unemployment rate dropped two-tenths of a point to 8.1 percent, Idaho’s one-tenth reduction keeps the state rate below the national rate for 11 years.

The official number of unemployed Idahoans is just over 57,000.


Cart Dash raises $13,000

The first-ever Main Street Market Cart Dash on Sept. 8 raised about $28,000 for the Sun Valley Center for the Arts and Eiron Schofield and Nikki Greenig won credits to Main Street Market worth a combined $13,000. In addition, several dozen people won prizes ranging from tickets to Sun Valley Center for the Arts’ events and gift certificates to local restaurants to wine and food products. 


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The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.