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Snake River, Yellowstone
Idaho: America's best kept secret?
Above, Snake River, Yellowstone.

To the question ".... aren't there just potatoes there?" the answer is always a resounding no.

Yet residents of this traditionally agricultural western state would prefer that you keep that hush-hush.

Largely unexplored until the Lewis and Clark expedition in 1805, the area at the time was a vast wilderness occupied only by Nez Perce and Shoshoni Indian tribes.

A half century would pass before the first permanent U.S. settlement in Idaho was established in Franklin in 1860. That same year gold was discovered in Orofino Creek, attracting thousands of prospectors to the state.

Today, history is repeating in Idaho. Modern prospecting has resulted in the expansion of high-tech industry in the Boise area, making Idaho a hotbed of technical innovation rivaled only by California's Silicon Valley.

Employee retention is helped along by Idaho's local attractions with plenty of outdoor activities for the sports-minded. These include an abundance of fishing, hunting and camping facilities, plus luxury world-class Idaho ski resorts such as at Sun Valley located only 2 1/2 hours from Boise.

idaho mapOther major tourist attractions found within the state include Yellowstone National Park, Hells Canyon and Nez Percé National Historic Park.

Yet more outdoor wonders await at Craters of the Moon National Monument which preserves Idaho's geological past in a bizarre landscape of volcanic rifts and lava spatters covering a 50,000 acre expanse.

Surprised? It ain't just taters, dude.

DID YOU KNOW? Iowa Travel Fun Facts

crooked street in Burlington
World's crookedest street

Elk Horn and Kimballton, Iowa are the two largest rural Danish settlements in the United States.

The National Balloon Museum in Indianola covers over 200 years of ballooning history.

Le Mars is home of Wells' Dairy, the world's largest producer of ice cream novelties in one location and is the self-proclaimed "Ice Cream Capital of the World".

Snake Alley in Burlington is the most crooked street in the world, according to Ripley's Believe It or Not.

More about Idaho travel around the Web:

Official Idaho Vacation and Travel Planning Guide - Places to go and things to do statewide with suggested tours & itineraries, online brochures, maps & pictures, regional guides, related resources.

Boise Convention & Visitors Bureau - Major and nearby attractions, maps, pictures, hotel and dining guides, weather facts and practical tourist info, sports & recreation, cultural event calendar.

North Idaho Tourism - Encompassing the Selkirk, Cabinet, Coeur d'Alene, and Bitterroot Mountains, lakes and valleys including St. Joe and Idaho Panhandle National Forests, with guides to outdoor recreation, an interactive map, pictures, event calendar.

Southeast Idaho High Country - Featuring what to see and do in American Falls, Bancroft, Blackfoot, Chesterfield, Downey, Fort Hall, Franklin, Grace, Lava Hot Springs, Malad, Montpelier, Pocatello, Preston, and Soda Springs with plenty of info on outdoor activities with maps, pictures and virtual tours.

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