Waterfalls in Section 3

Big Fiddler Creek Falls and Long Gulch Falls
Exit I-84 at Mountain Home; continue 20 miles north on US Highway 20; merge onto Road #134 and drive for 5 miles; turn left onto Road #113 and continue 2 miles to Prairie; at the junction, turn left (west) and drive 2.4 miles to the Road #189 junction; turn west onto Road #189 and proceed into South Fork Canyon for approximately 5.7 miles

At an elevation of 4,000 feet within the Mountain Home Ranger District of Boise National Forest, Big Fiddler Creek Falls claims the title of Idaho’s highest officially measured waterfall. Descending 252 feet, this waterfall can be impressive if viewed during early and late spring before Big Fiddler Creek dries up in the summer’s heat.

The 100 to 125 foot plunge of Long Gulch Falls is also viewable from the same area. At an elevation of 3,600 feet, this waterfall has a medium watershed and descends into the South Fork Boise River. After driving 2 miles into South Fork Canyon and locating the viewing area for Big Fiddler Creek Falls, gaze toward the near side of the canyon to find this cataract.

Little Salmon Falls
US Highway 95; 11 miles north of New Meadows; park at the unmarked turnout directly next to the falls

Located at an elevation of 3,640 feet near the Payette National Forest’s New Meadows Ranger District, this waterfall offers visitors scenery and easy accessibility. Following the Salmon River, these falls cascade 10 to 15 feet with a large watershed.

Lower Little Salmon Falls
US Highway 95; 10.3 miles north of New Meadows

The Little Salmon River descends rapidly for 5 to 10 feet to form Lower Little Salmon Falls near the Payette National Forest. Immediately north of the Smoky Boulder Road junction, park at the turnout and walk to the falls.

Fall Creek Falls
US Highway 95; 18 miles north of New Meadows near an unmarked highway turnout

Before slipping into the Little Salmon River under US Highway 95, Fall Creek plunges 15 to 25 feet at an elevation of 2,920 feet.

Lost Creek Falls
US Highway 95 south; turn west onto Lost Valley Valley Reservoir Road #089 and follow 5.3 miles; continue south for 2.7 miles on Road #154

Found within the Payette National Forest’s Council Ranger District, Lost Creek Falls is situated at an elevation of 4,380 feet and is easily accessible. Dropping 5 to 10 feet from Lost Creek into a pool below, these falls provide visitors with a peaceful picnic backdrop in the wooded surroundings. While Lost Creek Falls is visible from the roadside, visitors will find up-close views by taking one of the various fishermen’s trails leading to the cataract.

Little Falls and Big Falls
Exit Scenic Route 55 at Banks, ID onto South Fork Road; continue 21.7 miles to Little Falls and 23.9 miles to Big Falls

Little Falls drops along the South Fork Payette River within Boise National Forest’s Lowman Ranger District. At an elevation of 3,350 feet, Little Falls descends 5 to 10 feet as a wide band from the broad river. For more waterfall scenery, continue past Little Falls 2.2 miles until reaching Big Falls’ 25 to 40 foot drop into a pool below. This cataract is best viewed from a slight distance, so park where the gravel road broadens and gaze upstream. Big Falls may then be found 100 to 150 feet below on the canyon floor.

Indian Bathtub Falls
Take Scenic Route 51 to Bruneau; merge onto Hot Springs Road; after 7.2 miles, turn right onto Indian Bathtub Road and follow 0.7 mile to Sugar Creek Road; turn left and proceed 2.9 miles to a nameless dirt road; continue 0.9 mile to a parking area

Found on land that the Bureau of Land Management administers, Indian Bathtub Falls drips 7 to 12 feet into a small hot springs pool. Many find the waterfall uninspiring, but the thermal springs surrounding the cataract draws several visitors eager to soak in the warm water. Visitors are cautioned to bring appropriate footwear as the hot springs basin may contain broken glass from previous users.

Deadman Falls
I-84 to Glenns Ferry; merge onto Frontage Road and follow 1.7 miles west to Sailor Creek Road; turn left (south) and proceed 5.8 miles to Deadman Canyon

The seasonal eroding force of Deadman Creek and Deadman Falls formed the gorge now known as Deadman Canyon on land overseen by the Bureau of Land Management. Visitors expecting to see a powerful cataract, however, will likely be disappointed. Although a 125 to 175 foot rocky ridge characterizes the canyon, a small dam prohibits Deadman Creek from dropping down this ledge most of the year. However, visitors lucky enough to visit after a severe thunderstorm may catch a glimpse of the falls.

Jump Creek Falls
Drive south along US Highway 95 2.5 miles past the junction for Scenic Route 55; merge onto Poison Creek Road and follow for 3.5 miles; as the paved road sharply turns right, bear south (left) onto a nameless gravel road; proceed 0.5 mile before heading west (right) onto a dirt road marked “No Trespassing; “ disregard this warning as the road is the designated public access to Jump Creek Canyon; after driving 0.4 mile, visitors will reach a fork in the road; stay on the upper road at the right of the fork as this will lead to the mouth of the canyon in approximately 1 mile (the lower road leads to a private home); at the upper road’s end, park your vehicle and follow the trail into the canyon

Descending vertically for 40 to 60 feet along Jump Creek, Jump Creek Falls is found at an elevation of 2,640 feet on land governed by the Bureau of Land Management. Visitors who take a fairly easy hike will discover this cataract falling amidst unusual rock formations. Upon locating the trailhead, follow the 0.2-mile path leading to the canyon floor. Viewers will climb over and under massive boulders and jump across a small creek before reaching the cataract.

Smith Creek Falls
Exit Interstate 84 at Mountain Home and drive north on US Highway 20 for 20 miles; at Road #134 (marked Anderson Ranch Dam/Prairie), proceed 5 miles to the dam and then turn west (left) onto Road #113; continue 2 miles to Prairie, and at the junction, bear westward for 2.4 miles; upon reaching the junction with Road #189, turn left onto Road #189 and drive toward South Fork Canyon for approximately 3.7 miles; locate the cattle guard in the road about 0.1 mile before entering the canyon and continue forward approximately 200 feet; at the wide spot in the road, park your vehicle

Since no developed trail leads to Smith Creek Falls, access is limited and recommended only to adults with no physical limitations. For those willing to take a difficult day hike, however, Smith Creek Falls provides outstanding scenery with its 80 to 120 foot plunge into a cavern formed by Smith Creek. At an elevation of 3,700 feet, this cataract is located within the Boise National Forest’s Mountain Home Ranger District and is rarely visited.

After parking your vehicle, begin your trek by crossing the 5 to 10 foot wide irrigation canal that may be knee or waist deep. Next, cross through the sagebrush toward Smith Creek. After walking approximately 100 feet, you will reach views of the cataract from South Fork Canyon’s rim. Visitors are urged to use caution while hiking near these unfenced cliffs.

The following Idaho waterfalls are also located in this section with limited directions/access available:

Wildhorse Falls and Bear Creek Falls
Both Wildhorse and Bear Creek Falls lie within Adams County in the Payette National Forest. Wildhorse Falls is shown cascading near an unnamed 4-wheel drive road on topographic maps while Bear Creek Falls appears to have no roads or trails providing visitors with access.

Benton Creek Falls, Rush Falls, and Lower Rush Falls
These three waterfalls are located at different points all within the Payette National Forest and Washington County. Benton Creek Falls cascades down Benton Creek and topographic maps pinpoint the cataract alongside an unnamed trail. Both Rush Falls and Lower Rush Falls are mapped away from any developed trail, and access to both falls is uncertain.

Gold Fork Falls, Sixmile Creek Falls, and Upper Sixmile Creek Falls
Found in the Boise National Forest under the Garden Valley Ranger Station’s jurisdiction, all three of these cataracts lie within Idaho’s Valley County. Topographic maps illustrate Gold Fork Falls tumbling next to a gravel road. However, little information exists about the exact location of this road. Both Sixmile Creek Falls and Upper Sixmile Creek Falls can likely be seen from a distance. Maps illustrate a gravel road winding near the Middle Fork Payette River with views of the falls gained by gazing across the river from this road.

Falls Creek Falls
Falls Creek Falls plunges in Boise National Forest’s Mountain Home Ranger District near the South Fork Canyon. Located north of the Anderson Ranch Reservoir and Dam, the cataract is shown falling near Forest Road #123.

Swan Falls
Located on Bureau of Land Management land within Jump Creek Canyon, Swan Falls is found near US Highway 95. On the Snake River, a small dam creates Swan Falls and the cataract is shown on maps as a point of interest.

Austin Butte Falls, Camel Falls, The Falls (Sugarloaf), Sheepshead Draw Falls (Section 3)
Austin Butte Falls is found near Scenic Route 51 as it flows into Bruneau Canyon. Visitors can create their own trail to the falls using back roads. Camel Falls, The Falls (Sugarloaf), and Sheepshead Draw Falls are also located in the same vicinity. However, topographic maps suggest that these Idaho cataracts are inaccessible.

Clover Creek Falls
Found near Deadman Canyon southwest of Glenns Ferry, ID, Clover Creek Falls is a small, segmented cataract. For adventurers willing to take time to locate the waterfall, Clover Creek Falls can be viewed after following an old four-wheel drive trail to this destination.

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