Payette National Forest
Payette National Forest

Payette National Forest

in Idaho, United States
United States Map

The Payette National Forest is a swathe of wilderness in west-central Idaho that boasts limitless outdoor opportunities to quench your thirst for adventure. A landscape characterized by soaring granite crests, deep valleys, lush conifer forests, alpine lakes, montane meadows, and hot desert grasslands, the protected wilderness is unrivaled in its beauty and topographic variety. Abundant with an array of flora and fauna, a trip into the Payette National Forest is full of wonderment.

Offering over 2.3 million acres of unspoiled backcountry, the outdoor pursuits are boundless! Encompassing the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness and peaks in the West Mountains, Lick Creek Mountains, Salmon River Mountains, Cuddy Mountains, and the Bitterroot Mountains, the Payette National Forest grants visitors the opportunity to explore some of the most remote and rugged areas of the wilds. Bordered by two of the deepest canyons in North America—the Salmon River Canyon and Hells Canyon, this region is relatively unfrequented, with the exception of weekend city wilderness wanderers.

From high mountain passes to deep serrated canyons, the adventure possibilities are diverse and abundant! The summer months see wonderful hiking, climbing, biking, off-roading, camping, and backpacking prospects. Additionally, the adorning alpine lakes, rivers, and streams offer great water recreation, including hot spring soaking, swimming, fishing, kayaking, and canoeing! The winter months are especially scenic, providing great snowshoeing and cross-country skiing trails, off-roading and snowmobiling routes, and alpine skiing at the Brundage Mountain Resort.

Indulge your recreational interests in the Payette National Forest. No matter how you choose to explore this beautiful backcountry, the scenery and serenity will not disappoint. The next time you find yourself in Idaho, a trip to the Payette National Forest is worth the detour.

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