The Best Natural Swimming Holes in Idaho

Posted by Hughes Group Blog Team on Friday, April 19th, 2019 at 3:53pm.


When it comes to the summertime, many people love to go to either the beach or someplace cool and relaxing. In the state of Idaho, there are plenty of natural swimming holes to choose from in order to get your fix of outdoor relaxation and fun. Down below are some of the best in the state. Feel free to visit each one of them!

Crater Lake- Known for being the deepest lake in the United States (with an outstanding depth of almost 2,000 feet), this body of water is believed to have formed from an eruption around 5700 B.C. that caused a depression in the ground. Rain and snow melting over the centuries helped to create what is now Crater Lake. The lake technically spreads into Oregon; however, it is still one of the best places to take a swim in the Cascade Mountains. The water is famous for being among the purest water in the nation. It is also a deep blue color and very clear, so you will probably get to see much of the depth of the lake from alongside the shoreline. If you are searching for a relaxing and beautiful place to swim, Crater Lake is the place for you.

Fall River- Located on the eastern side of the state (and crossing into Wyoming), this river is a great place for a quick swim. There are a number of rocks down the middle on the northern side of the river as well. You will know that the water levels are high if those rocks are completely covered.

Saddleback Lakes- These bodies of water are a chain of glacier lakes that are located in the Sawtooth Mountains standing at an elevation of about 8,000 to 9,000 feet. It offers easy access to Elephant’s Perch which is one of Idaho’s best lookout points (which can give you a clear view of all of these lakes and much more). These waters will give you a refreshing swimming experience. Not only is there the opportunity to go swimming, but you may also take your boat out onto these lakes for an enjoyable ride.

Baumgartner- This body of water is a special hot spring; however, it is also a cool water hole. This allows visitors to get a taste of both as they relax in the naturally warm water. It is located along the South Fork of the Boise River just outside of the town Featherville. If you want to relax in this natural hot spring, be sure not to pollute it in any way. There is also a campground next to this hot spring if you would like to spend the night for additional days to relax in this spring.

Warm Lake- This lake is located near Payette Lake in the mountains near McCall. The water is crystal-clear and is nowhere near civilization, so you will be able to swim in peace and relax in the cool shade. It is the largest natural lake found in the Boise National Forest, stretching at a distance of 640 acres. There is also plenty of wildlife that comes around the lake, so you will be able to spot mule deer, elk, black bears, all from the comfort of the water. If you would like to spend more time in this area, there are also campgrounds and lodges near the outskirts.

Jump Creek Falls- Located near the city of Marsing (which is the halfway point between Boise and Twin Falls), this waterfall is a perfectly secluded place to go swimming with a couple of your friends (or you can relax by yourself!). The falls are hidden in the Jump Creek Canyon, so you will need to do a little bit of hiking in order to find it. However, the hike isn’t very strenuous, so you will have plenty of energy to swim to your heart’s content!

Salmon River- The famous Salmon River stretches for a total of 425 miles, making this one of the longest rivers in the United States (excluding Alaska and Hawaii). It is also ideal for whitewater rafting, kayaking, canoeing, and swimming. Also known as the River of No Return because of its famous rapids, this river is considered one of the most feared in all of Idaho. However, there are a number of nooks and crannies that are calm enough for visitors to have a nice and relaxing swim without having to be pulled down by the strong current. The Salmon River is also one of the most scenic swimming holes in all of Idaho, so you may consider bringing a waterproof camera to capture some amazing moments as well as the surrounding mountains!

As you can see, Idaho holds a variety of unique places that are ideal for some summertime swimming. There are still a number of other areas for you to go visit, so be sure to ask the Idaho locals for some of their favorite natural swimming holes! If you would like any information on any of these places, please be sure to check online for the best times to go swimming (as well as the water levels so that you can have a greater experience). Be sure to bring the essentials, such as plenty of drinking water, sunscreen, and a camera for waterproof pictures. It is hoped that you will stay safe, and be prepared to have a fun, cool, and relaxing swimming experience.


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