Nez Perce National Forest

Quick Facts

Nez Perce National Forest

Idaho

(208) 983-1950

Map Directions

Things To Do

Overview

Located in north central Idaho between Oregon and Montana, lies the Nez Perce National Forest. Of the Forest's 2.2 million-acres, nearly one half of the land is classified wilderness. Four wild and scenic rivers and several recreational rivers have carved deep canyons into the surrounding mountainous terrain. Large elk herds and fantastic steelhead runs provide exciting opportunities for sport fishing and hunting. It is a land rich in Nez Perce Tribe and early gold mining history.

Map of Nez Perce Nat'l Forest

Latitude, Longitude: 46.115494, -115.941143

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Activities

  • Boating

    Motorized activities are prohibited on portions of the rivers that run through the wilderness. All motorized and non-motorized watercraft are required by Idaho State Law to purchase and display Idaho Invasive Species Fund (IISF) stickers in order to legally launch and operate in Idaho. Jet boats regularly travel from Vinegar Creek to Corn Creek, a 90 mile stretch, and 180 miles round trip.

  • Bicycling

    Check out Meadow Creek Trail #726. Mountain bikes are allowed on the first three miles through this beautiful area. As you travel through an area similar to a rainforest you can expect to see ferns, mosses and cedar trees in abundance. Be alert, you could be sharing the trail with motorbike or horse riders.

  • Auto/Motorcycle

    There are a number of scenic drives on the Nez Perce Forest. For an introduction into the mining history consider a self guided tour of the Florence Basin. Not much exists of the mining district. The Gospel Hump Wilderness corridor is a rare scenic drive. The views are outstanding along this route; wilderness surrounds you on either side of the road. Another historical drive is the Elk City Wagon road from the town of Clearwater, all the way to Elk City. Interpretive signs are posted at prominent points along the route. And for the adventuresome, consider the Magruder Road Corridor east of Elk City to Darby, Montana. This primitive 101 mile road was constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s and has held up to the test of time beautifully.

  • Camping

    The Nez Perce National Forest offers cabin rental, developed campgrounds, dispersed camping, group campsites, and as well as RV sites. Water and garbage services are provided during peak season. Camping in any one area or the placement of camping equipment, is currently limited to a total of 18 days use in dispersed campsites. Developed campgrounds stay limit is 14 days and will remain in effect as such.

  • Climbing

    Contact the park for climbing opportunities.

  • Fishing

    There are many lakes and ponds on the Nez Perce National Forest. The Fenn Pond, near the Historic Fenn Ranger Station, is stocked by the Idaho Fish and Game Department. It has a smooth accessible trail and boardwalk and is ideal for children and those who cannot traverse rugged terrain. In addition, the middle is the South Fork of the Clearwater River offers prime steelhead and salmon to the fishing enthusiast.

  • Hiking

    Over one half of the Nez Perce National Forest is Wilderness. The remoteness of the Forest adds to its allure, requiring a commitment of time from visitors along with backcountry and recreation skills. Be prepared for quickly changing weather conditions and terrain. There are no communication services in most areas of the forest. Also there are day use opportunities where you can literally step out your back door and enjoy the Forest.

  • Historic Sites

    The Nez Perce National Forest offers the Florence Historic Mining Tour, a long forgotten tale in the area.

  • Horseback Riding

    There are access points into the wilderness areas located on the Nez Perce National Forest. Some points offer a stock loading ramp, stock feeders, hitch racks and/or a corral.

  • Hunting

    The Nez Perce National Forest has excellent big game hunting opportunities. A good amount of the forest is wilderness. The remoteness of the Forest adds to its allure, requiring a commitment of time from visitors along with backcountry and recreation skills. Be prepared for quickly changing weather conditions and terrain. There are no communication services in most areas of the forest.

  • Off Highway Vehicles

    OHV use is allowed on designated roads and trails. Stop by a ranger office and pick up a motor vehicle use map or call ahead to check on certain trails.

  • Picnicking

    Most of the campgrounds provide picnic tables and fire grates. There are many undeveloped picnic spots on the forest as well. Furthermore the Fish Creek Pavilion can be reserved for group picnics (up to 75 people) by contacting the Clearwater Ranger District office.

  • RVing

    Some of the developed sites can accommodate larger RV's and some dispersed sites can accommodate small and medium sized RV's. It's best to check with the local forest service office prior to pulling your RV into an area. Many places could turn out to be a tight spot.

  • Water Sports

    World renowned white water rafting in the area. Jet boats regularly travel from Vinegar Creek to Corn Creek, a 90 mile stretch, and 180 miles round trip.

  • Winter Sports

    There are over 100 miles of trail are groomed by the Sno-Drifters Snowmobile club for snowmobiling each winter. The trails run from Fish Creek Campground south to the Florence town site with side trips along the route. The area boasts a very popular Cross-Country skiing and snowshoeing trail. Recreationists can enjoy 1 to 7 miles of groomed trails. The trails are packed, groomed and tracked as weather and snow conditions permit.

Directions

Driving

From Grangeville, US highway 95 south and State highway 14 east are the primary access routes int the forest.

Phone Numbers

Primary

(208) 983-1950

Links