Upper Salmon River

This scenic “River of No Return” was formed 35 to 45 million years ago and is the longest free flowing river (425 miles) within one state in the lower 48. A total of 125 miles of the Salmon River is a designated National Wild and Scenic River. The Salmon River’s granite-walled canyons represent the second deepest gorge on the continent, second only to Hells Canyon. Forty-six miles of the Salmon River are classified as recreational and 79 miles are wild and the canyons showcase some of the oldest rocks in Idaho. A wealth of wildlife call the Salmon River Canyon home, including bighorn sheep, bobcat, black bear and beaver, as well as a variety of fish such as cutthroat trout, rainbow trout and bull trout. The white-water rafting opportunities along the Middle Fork Salmon River are unsurpassed in the state.

Several BLM campgrounds and boat launch facilities are available along the River (Kilpatrick, Elevenmile, Shoup Bridge Campground, Morgan Bar Campground, and Tower Rock Campground). These facilities provide access to some of the calmer stretches of water along the River – ideal for sightseeing, camping, scenic floats, and fishing.

Permits are required for float boats and jetboats on the wild section of the Salmon River from June 20 through September 7.

Floaters are required to carry fire pans, portable toilets, ash containers, shovel, bucket and food strainer.

All boats and non-motorized vessels (canoe, kayak, raft, drift boat, etc.) are required to purchase and display Idaho Invasive Species Law and Boat Registration stickers in order to legally launch and operate in Idaho.