When Dean Bingham, president of Agracel, heard that I was going to the Lost Rivers Valley, he told me, “Wow! That is a great place. That is where we go camping each year with my Dad. Pickle’s is our lunch stop every year on the way up to Challis.” I stopped in for breakfast, having a wonderful conversation with a round table to local farmers who educated me on their crops and big issues. Drought for the past six years and most of the past fifteen was their major concern, as was the increasing cost of inputs for their crops.
Bob Burroughs, VP of Lost Rivers Valley ED, told me, “We’re seeing a big push of people coming here with second homes. The Sun Valley is pricing many people out of the market, forcing them to move. We’re the next valley over and they are moving here. It is driving our property values much higher, making housing for normal workers way too expensive.” The house on the right, which sits on all of 10 acres, sold for $1.9 million recently.
With seven of the highest peaks in Idaho located in the Lost Rivers Valley, it’s a land of incredible beauty. Hunting, fishing, camping, trails (walking, biking and ATVs) and even a wind trail are huge assets that are slowly being discovered. The wind trail is the first official one authorized in the USA and attracted an airline pilot from Boise who is building a glider park that will allow owners to build along its runway.
These second home owners have great potential for ED. Some have a wealth of business knowledge. Others are going to start businesses from their vacation homes. And, still others with a love for the valley could help to start a community foundation or an angel investor network, two items I suggested that they look at starting.
I fell in love with the Lost Rivers Valley. I hope to get back there. Dean Bingham was right!