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Moon Dipper Hot Springs

On August 8th, 2020, Skip, Bandit, Ezra, and I made our way to our favorite camping spot with the best hot springs in Idaho. We drove through crouch, Idaho, into the Boise national forest.

If you love Boon-docking "Camping in non-designated campsites," this is the area for you. There are spots all along the river, and across the street against the mountain, the edge is full of camping spots that are free to use. The link below of the campgrounds in the area if you prefer that route. They are located at the end of the road, Boiling Springs Campground. Click HERE to explore and reserve your campsite.

Remember ALWAYS camp 200 feet or further away from anybody of water to preserve the water and the creatures that live within. And ALWAYS pack it out. Please click HERE to read about the Leave no Trace Project.

Regardless of if you are in the area to camp or just for the day to soak in the many hot springs the site has to offer, you may encounter moose, whitetail antelope, deer, elk, occasionally a cow, and of course rabbits and squirrels. During the evening into the late night, you may hear wolves or coyotes in the distance. Always be aware of your surroundings while in the wilderness. We always recommend carrying bear spray.

You are headed to some of the most beautiful hot springs stop and enjoy all the scenery. The area is full of Ponderosa pine, Douglas Fir, Engelmann Spruce, Narrowleaf Balsamroot, glacier lily, wildflowers, and so much more. Some of the fields you come across are full of vivid colors and so much greenery.

The 4.9 miles round trip is a beautiful loop with an elevation climb of 439 feet if you make the loop. The loop is not for everyone and may be difficult to achieve.

If you are not an experienced hiker or not wearing proper hiking shoes, we recommend going through the river instead of walking up the mountain.

The road to the trailhead is a dirt road and kind of rough in some places. There are no restrooms at the trailhead, but vault toilets you can sneak over to at the Boiling Springs campground.

There should be plenty of parking at the trailhead. When you start, you can make your way down to the tiny cabins and soak there if you don't want to make it all the way to the final destination. Or, in our case, we're unable to soak at the end of the trail.

Directions up the Mountain

  • Take a right at the first fork.

  • Take a left at the second fork and go up the hill for the mountainside trail. (Take a right, cut through the river for more of a more straightforward path)

  • If on the mountainside

  • Take a left at the third fork

  • Take a right go down at the fourth fork

  • Cross the bridge at the fifth fork

  • Take a left at the T after crossing the two bridges.

If you go up and hike the mountainside, it is on the problematic side of moderate. You are going straight up, then straight down. You have to jump over multiple logs, boulders and cross a lot of streams. Most of the trail is on a cliff edge that was crumbling off. We found it to be rather dangerous.

If you choose to take the river route, you will pass two large rivers that go up to your knees. This trail was decently flat and nothing dangerous. We took this the way back.

Directions Through the River

  • Take a right at the first fork.

  • Then take a right and go through the river.

  • The river is about knee high and fast, depending on the time of the year. Once you cross the first river, the trail is marked, and you will pass the second river.

  • You will continue on the path, and you should cross a bridge.

  • Take a left at the T after crossing the two bridges.

  • Continue up the hill to the pools.

  • If you hike past the heart-shaped pool, you will come up to where you can backpack in and camp.

There are a couple springs you can relax in. The first one by the tree is incredibly hot. The second one had a naked couple in it after lunch and changed, so we didn't get in. It looked like a heart and was beautiful.

Click HERE to watch our adventure on youtube.

Overall, this was such a beautiful hike, and we recommend hiking to it. But go through the river if you just want to soak in the springs and not interest in the hike itself. And if you decide to go up the mountain, make sure you pay attention to your footing and surroundings.

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