There are many great things about Idaho. It grows the best potatoes on the planet, the wine and beer industry are exploding and winning all kinds of awards across the glove, and its natural splendor is truly a thing to behold. One of the best parts of that natural splendor is the networks of rivers that crisscross that state and create so much life in so many different spots. These rivers give the state so much character and bring about so many opportunities for fun and relaxation. But if you are not too familiar with the Idaho landscape and have not lived in the area for long or have not visited very much, you might not know where to go for the best rivers and the most fun. There are rivers everywhere in Idaho, but they can still be hard to find since they take up small parts of the state despite their vastness. They are still relatively small in the grand scheme of things. With that in mind, I have something of a guide for you today so that you can explore Idaho with the certainty that you are seeing the right parts of it and no landmark goes without a visit.
First, there is the elephant in the room, and it is one big elephant with a trunk that goes on for more than a thousand miles. It is the biggest river in the state and runs along for much of the state’s border with its western neighbors. Then it goes on to snake (I wonder why it is called that) across the southern belt of the state and through some of the most populous places in Idaho. There is a lot to do along the Snake, but what you absolutely have to do is visit Shoshone Falls. Right next to the city of Twin Falls there is a waterfall that will absolutely take your breath away. It drops a long distance and is very wide as well. Only Niagara Falls can really compare, though Niagara is probably much more of a spectacle. While you are in the area you might want to check out the giant bridge that spans the canyon created by the Snake next door to Twin Falls. It is fun to just drive across it (Something you will probably do just to get to the city) but it can be much more exciting to walk the bridge instead. Some people even hook bungee cords to the railing and go jumping, though I only advise you do that if you are a real thrill seeker. It is a fairly big past time for the area, but it is still not for the faint of heart. But maybe, if you are feeling particularly adventures, bungee jumping might be the thing for you.
Idaho Rivers Continued…
If you are feeling like danger is something you want to be experiencing, there is also the River of No Return. Okay, the river is not actually called that (It is actually known as the Salmon River) anymore and it probably is not all that dangerous these days, knowing what we know, but it is definitely a very cool river located in the Frank Church—River of No Return Wilderness Area which has been sectioned off as being off limits to certain human activities. You can still visit and even do something rafting down the river, but it is illegal to develop the area industrially or with similar intentions. It is not a place for factories or power plants and is purely for the enjoyment of a few tourists and for the flourishing of wildlife. You can be reassured that if you visit the area, it will be totally unspoiled by human hands and a perfect place to spend some time on the water or just exploring the wilderness. There are a few places like this around the country, working together to keep certain parts of the United States pure and untouched.
If you want something a little simpler, you might be interested in trying the Boise River which (Yep, you guessed it) goes straight through the capital of Idaho, Boise. It is not much of a river when you try and compare it to something like the Snake or the River of No Return, but it is unique in some of the activities you can do while on and around it. First, there is the river itself which is supremely raftable. You can pretty much go on it whenever you like (Within reason) but there is also a massive event each year where thousands of people all grab their rafts and innertubes and hop in the water for one grand float down the river. You can be one of them, basking in the light of a summer day and listening to the river babble on and the birds above you chirp away. Then, when the time comes to get out of the river, there is the green belt which runs the length of the city and the river within the city. There are a hundred things to do in this green belt, ranging from everything to concerts you can visit to the Boise zoo where you can see a bunch of cool animals the river itself might not have. There are even some historical monuments, one of which is for remembering the tragedy of the Holocaust and specifically Anne Frank’s role in it. It may not be in Europe, but that does not mean you cannot celebrate the life of a brave young girl thrust into difficult times. That is the magic of the Boise River.
Whatever you want to do, there is a river in Boise that will probably support that for you. Want to go fishing? There are a bunch of rivers for that. Want to go boating? There are a bunch of rivers for that. Want to white water rafting? Take your pick, because that is a massive past time in Idaho. Pull on a swimsuit and head for the water. You are guaranteed to have some fun.