Challis Hot Springs - Idaho

• Challis Hot Springs is a scenic geothermal oasis on the bank of the Salmon River
• Features large warm swimming and smaller hot pools

Challis Hot Springs is a picturesque location on the bank of the Salmon River. Sitting at the elevation of 5,000 feet in Central Idaho near the town of Challis, this hot springs spot provides fantastic soaking opportunities along with a chance to experience great outdoors.

Challis Hot Springs features two pools, the larger one is 100 by 30 feet and the smaller one is 25 by 18 feet. Hot water at 127°F is bubbled up from several underground springs and comes out through pool bottoms covered by river rocks. The largest pool's water varies by season and is kept at 96°F during summer and 98°F to 100°F during winter. Smaller pool water is around 105°F throughout the year. The temperature is controlled by adding cold artesian water manually. So, enter into the pool cautiously because temperatures can fluctuate.

Both pools function on a flow-through basis with water being constantly replaced, so no chemical treatment is needed. The mineral water is naturally odorless and relaxing making for a more pleasurable soaking experience.

The easiest accommodation to get by the hot spring is to use the campground. It is open for both RVs and tents. Besides, a six room bed and breakfast, changing rooms, and picnic areas are available.

In addition to enjoying hot geothermal water, you can ride the multiple ATV trails in the area, hike, fish for trout and steelhead, kayak or raft on the Salmon River, or simply enjoy beautiful nature of the Round Valley.

Challis Hot Springs - Idaho
Challis Bed & Breakfast
Challis Hot Springs - Idaho
Swimming Pool
Challis Hot Springs - Idaho
Hot Soaking Pool
Challis Hot Springs Source- Idaho
Travertine Source

Brief History

Long before the first European settlers appeared in the area, the land around hot springs was actively used by the First People. The fertile soil of the valley was very productive for gathering and the surrounding area was a perfect place for hunting and fishing.

First Europeans arrived in 1822 and were trappers led by Michael Bourdon in a search for beaver fur. In 1880 homesteader Robert Currie Beardsley became the first European who actually settled in the area. He claimed 40 acres including the water rights and started developing his property which included building a saw mill, a hotel, a barn, and a house. Hot spring was developed too for easier access and convenience.

The hot spring changed ownership multiple times over the years, but the healing properties of geothermal mineral water remain along with owners' desire to let visitors relax and enjoy it.

Challis Hot Springs | Facts

Location: 9 miles east of Challis • Idaho • USA
Open: Year-round except Thanksgiving and Christmas Day
Development: A large warm swimming pool and a small hot soaking pool
Clothing: Required
Amenities: Changing rooms, shower, picnic tables, a boat access
Accommodations: Tent and RV campground, bed & breakfast rooms
Hiking distance: Short
Road Access: Any vehicle
Day-use: Yes with fees

Elevation: 5,000 ft (1,524 m)

Water T° (source): 127°F (53°C)
Water T° (large pool): 96-100°F (35-38°C)
Water T° (soaking pool): 105°F (41°C)
Chemical used: None

More Adventures

Directions to Challis Hot Springs

From the intersection of highways US 93 and ID 75 near Challis,

  • Drive 1.5 miles east on US 93 to Hot Springs Road
  • Turn left onto Hot Springs Road and follow north for 3.1 miles to Challis Hot Springs Road
  • Bear left onto Challis Hot Springs Road and continue 2.4 miles to the destination on the left.

Phone: 208-879-4442

Address: 5025 Hot Springs Rd, Challis, ID 83226

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