Wild & Scenic Rivers in Idaho


In the canyon of the Owyhee River
Owyhee Wild & Scenic River
A rafter navigating through some rapids on the Jarbidge River
On the Jarbidge River

All the streams designated as Wild & Scenic Rivers in Idaho are gathered in the Owyhee-Bruneau-Jarbidge Rivers area of southwestern Idaho. This is the area of the Owyhee Canyonlands, a region of extensive volcanic activity during the Miocene Epoch (24 to 5 million years ago). The region is relatively flat except in those areas where the basalt and rhyolite formations have been deeply incised by fast-flowing streams. The canyons are steep, sharp, twisted and up to 1,000 feet deep in spots. Whitewater enthusiasts love the larger streams as spring and early summer waterflows offer Class IV and V rapids, although the lower reaches of the Owyhee seldom see water rougher than Class II.

Wild & Scenic Rivers in Idaho

A view of the canyon of Little Jacks Creek
Little Jacks Creek Canyon
Photos courtesy of the Bureau of Land Management