Points of Interest
Idaho Rafting Guides and Outfitters Listed by River:
Although there are more than 100 campsites peppered throughout the Hells Canyon area, travelers should remember that many of the sites are in remote areas. Amenities vary according to each campground, just as they would in the backcountry. Potable water is available in a limited number of campgrounds, but on the whole, campers must come equipped with water, food and enough supplies to last their stay (corner stores don't exist in the NRA). All campgrounds are restroom-equipped and most are ADA-compliant. Campers are expected to pack out their trash.
Campers have ample campgrounds to choose from along the Imnaha River at the southwestern edge of the NRA. Most campgrounds in this area accommodate tent camping and are accessible by road. There are some RV sites (without hookups). River flows can fluctuate dramatically, so take care to check the current flow level if you're looking at camping at the river's edge.
The north end of the NRA has limited camping facilities. Dougherty CG and Buckhorn, both approximately 45 miles northeast of Enterprise, are located off Forest Road 46 and trade on their remote nature and quiet beauty (RV pull-throughs are available). Their added attractions include eye-popping views of Hells Canyon and the surrounding countryside.
There also are popular campgrounds just south of the NRA on the Snake River. Hells Canyon Park, on Oxbow Reservoir, has 24 campsites with RV hookups, an RV dump and a boat ramp. Copperfield Park, also on Oxbow Reservoir, and Brownlee, on Brownlee Reservoir, have excellent camping and RV amenities with paved boat launches.
Most campgrounds are open only during the summer and fall months (June to October or November). Fees range around $10 per site. Check with the USFS for road conditions, particularly if you are planning a late-season camping trip.
Best selection of books on the Northwest.
Camping Idaho: A Comprehensive Guide to Public Tent and RV Campgrounds, 2nd Edition (A Falcon Guide Camping) by Randy Stapilus. This guide contains descriptions of 300+ public campgrounds in Idaho. Information includes easy to use maps and charts, elevations, facilities, hookups, activities, fees and reservations. Order now...
Snake River of Hells Canyon by Johnny Carrey, John Carrey and Cort Conley. Organized by miles headed downriver from Hells Canyon dam, this is a colorful chronicle of canyon history. A must read for anyone visiting Hells Canyon, whether by boat, on horseback or a foot. Order now...
Island and Rapids: A Geological Story of Hells Canyon by Tracy Vallier. This book, written by a world-class scientist tells the geologic history of the deepest gorge in North America. Also included is a mile by mile guide to the Canyon's features as well as photographs. Order now...
Hiking Hells Canyon & Idaho's Seven Devils Mountains (Regional Hiking Series) by Fred Barstad. Use this guide for up-to-date trail information, accurate directions to popular as well as less-traveled trails, difficulty ratings for each hike, detailed trail maps, and zero-impact camping tips. Order now...
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