DescriptionBounded by the Snake and Salmon rivers and the Middle Fork of the Salmon River in the west-central part of the state, Payette National Forest contains 2,307,897 acres ranging in elevation from 1,400 to 9,000 feet above sea level. More than 1,800 miles of both motorized and non-motorized trails include Lava Ridge National Recreation Trail and Sheep Rock Nature Trail. The forest’s remote rivers and mountains offer exceptional fishing, hiking, hunting, climbing and boating opportunities during summer and fall months.
Winter sports include alpine skiing at Brundage Mountain Resort and the smaller Payette Lakes Ski Hill as well as cross-country skiing and snowmobiling in many other areas. Thousands of burned forest acres continue to regenerate as part of the natural cycle after major fires in 1994, 2000 and 2007.
A small portion of the Hells Canyon Wilderness and Hells Canyon National Recreation Area and a large portion of the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness are within the forest. These primitive mountainous areas overlap several national forests and contain extensive non-motorized trail networks. For more information, contact Payette National Forest, 501 N. Mission St., McCall, ID 83638; phone (208) 634-0700.