In Idaho, BLM manages eight Wilderness designations across over 541,000 acres of public lands. 

Designated in August 2015, the Jim McClure-Jerry Peak Wilderness and White Clouds Wilderness in central Idaho are the BLM's newest wilderness designations. Both of these wilderness areas are jointly managed with the Forest Service.  The BLM's portion is a mountainous brush dominated area featuring plenty of opportunities for hiking, fishing, hunting, and equestrian use, as well as significant opportunities for solitude and enjoyment of beautiful scenery.

The BLM manages six wilderness areas encompassing over 500,000 acres of public land in the remote Owyhee Canyonlands of southwest Idaho. Designated in 2009, this vast high desert plateau includes deep canyons carved by the Owyhee, Bruneau and Jarbidge Rivers. These unique and beautiful canyons are a great place to explore, hike, backpack and enjoy unsurpassed solitude. Volcanic caves, canyons and spire-like hoo-doos tower hundreds of feet above whitewater rafters here. In early spring, this area brightens up with beautiful desert flowers contrasted sharply against the dark volcanic rock. The sagebrush plateaus of the Owyhee Uplands provides habitat for over 200 species of wildlife. Soaring eagles and hawks can often be seen flying over the skylines and nesting along the cliff faces here. The ancestors of the Shoshone-Paiute and Shoshone-Bannock people have used these canyonlands for thousands of years for shelter, weaponry, fish and game and water.

Featured Wilderness Area: Jerry Peak Wilderness

BLM Idaho State Director Tim Murphy overlooks Herd Lake in Jerry Peak Wilderness. Photo by BLM.

Idaho is home to some of the newest Wilderness in the nation including the beautiful Boulder-White Clouds complex of central Idaho. These protected areas, designated in August 2015, preserve approximately 276,000 acres of high mountain backcountry with crystal lakes and abundant wildlife. The BLM manages 23,916 acres in the Jim McClure-Jerry Peak Wilderness.  This mountainous and dry area features hiking, fishing, hunting, and equestrian use, as well as opportunities to just “get away” and enjoy some solitude. The Jim McClure-Jerry Peak Wilderness area also includes the upper Herd Creek watershed with one of the most intact native plant communities in the state.  This patchwork of riparian willows, abundant bunch grasses, forbs, aspen and conifers provides critical habitat for fish and wildlife species in the wilderness area.  A great way to get to the wilderness is to take a short hike from the end of the road to Herd Lake A hike to the top of Jerry Peak will greet you with great panoramic views of surrounding mountain ranges.  Jim McClure-Jerry Peak is the least visited of the three new wilderness areas, so if you want to enjoy solitude, great vistas, and the natural environment with minimal impacts, this is a great place to visit. The public scoping period for the draft wilderness management plan (the proposed action) began November 21 and will conclude on January 5. Learn more about the planning process in our newsletter and storymap. Review the interim map and guidelines here.

All BLM Idaho Wilderness

A complete list of BLM Idaho wilderness areas is below: