Box Canyon State Park

Waterfalls and Caribbean blue springs in the Idaho desert

A beautiful waterfall,  golden eagles and marmots, and beautiful spring-fed waters that appear blue and turquoise in the sun: All await visitors to Box Canyon State Park. 

In December 2006, The Nature Conservancy completed its transfer of Box Canyon to Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation.

Twenty miles northwest of Twin Falls, in the heart of Box Canyon, pristine water bubbles up, finally released after a century-long journey beneath an arid lava landscape. The rare crystal waters provide a home for imperiled aquatic species, such as the Shoshone sculpin, before flowing down the mile-long canyon to replenish the Snake River. Along the way, cliffs make the canyon an attractive perch for eagles, hawks, falcons and owls.

The spring, the eleventh largest in the United States, is one of the most unique geological features in southern Idaho.

In 1999, the State of Idaho had negotiated a purchase of nearby Box Canyon from the Hardy family. The state didn’t have the funds to purchase the property, but assigned the contract to the Conservancy. Under state terms, the Conservancy purchased Box Canyon, and simultaneously entered into a purchase and sale agreement with the state.

The Conservancy believes that Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation’s vision for the Thousand Springs Complex offers an incredible future for this area. The Conservancy also recently transferred Ritter Island, also known as Thousand Springs Preserve, to the state, and helped create nearby Billingsley Creek State Park.

  • Hiking
  • Wildlife viewing
  • Bird watching

Beware of abundant poison ivy in the canyon.

Facilities: Restrooms are available. Eventually, the preserve will include constructed trails and interpretive displays.

For more info call Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation at 208.334.4199.


Directions: Take I-84 to Exit #155 in Wendell and go west 3 miles to county road 1500 East. Turn left (follow the sign to Buhl). Follow this road 3.2 miles to the signed parking lot on the right.


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