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Middle Fork Payette River

 4.0 (1)
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16.6 Miles 26.6 Kilometers


3,001' 915 m


-1,189' -362 m



Avg Grade (3°)


Max Grade (22°)

6,079' 1,853 m


4,040' 1,231 m


Shared By Chris Wandervans



Getting forecast...

River riding and hot springs.

Chris Wandervans

Dogs Off-leash

Features -none-


This trail starts at the northern end of Forest Service Rd. #698 and travels north along the Middle Fork of the Payette River. At the beginning of the trail, you'll overlook the historical Boiling Springs Guard Station. This cabin can be rented for your next Middle Fork adventure.

There are a number of side trails along this route that hikers use to avoid crossing the river. It is best to avoid these options and stay on the main trail. The lower portion of the trail crosses the river 17 times. So, it is best to avoid this trail in the spring.

This trail is best ridden from July through October to ensure all of the crossing are low enough. About two miles up the trail, you'll come to a series of hot springs. The best of the hot springs is the Pine Burl Hot Springs that features two nicely sized pools and pipes for adjusting hot and cold water flow. This is accessed by detouring up dash creek about 100ft. The hot spring does make for a nice soak on the way back down this trail to warm up your feet after all of the water crossings.

Beyond the hot springs, the trail becomes more rustic and your chance of seeing someone is very slim. The trail stays close to the river and is very scenic and weaves up the canyon. The water crossings continue, but it is fair to say this is an amazing backcountry experience. As you near the end the trail will start to climb before it levels out again. This trail is only cut free of trees every three years. The next tree cutting will take place in 2016 so keep that in mind when attempting this trail.


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Jun 26, 2005
Joseph States
only road from Fools Creek down

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Make sure you're not on the wrong Trail. Cause the Middle Fork Payette River Trail is actually for Hikers only I was told. Not to mention the hiking books I have say it's only for Hikers. Jul 1, 2016

The middle fork of the payette trail is open to bikes. There are a number of hiker created side routes that should be avoided since they are causing some severe erosion. Jul 2, 2016
did lower 1/2 trail 29 july 2017 from bull creek, on mountain bikes, connecting from 16:1 from north. trail headed south NOT MARKED and not easy to find--must cross bull creek to get to start of trail. GPS mandatory (suggest gaiagps). flow was 170 cfs, and any level higher than that, the upper crossings would be too dangerous. prepare for lots of hike-a-bike. Jul 31, 2017

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