• Power Plant Recreation Area Hot Springs is a series of hot springs along the Middle Fork Boise River
Power Plant Recreation Area Hot Springs is a remote destination in rural Idaho surrounded by the Boise National Forest. The hot springs area is just a mile and a half away from the historic mining town of Atlanta and attracts tourists to enjoy the hot geothermal water with picturesque views at the Sawtooth Wilderness Area.
One of many hot springs emerging along the Middle Fork of the Boise River, Power Plant Recreation Area Hot Springs is a collection of small pools adjacent to the river bank. Hot mineral water comes out of the ground at 115°F near the river and flows to primitive pools lined with the river boulders and rocks. Pools are generally four to six feet wide and a foot deep. A temperature varies around 100-110°F depending on the weather conditions which is almost perfect for comfortable bathing. You can always mix hot water with cold river water to lower the temperature.
Managed by Boise National Forest, Power Plant Campground has 24 sites with fire rings, grills, picnic tables, a horseshoe pit, and a vault restroom. The camp is open from May to September on a first-come, first-serve basis.
The trail from the recreation area and campground descends to the river and hot springs. Be aware, the hot spring is visible from the campground so bathing suits are recommended.
Besides hot springs bathing, the Atlanta area offers a plethora of outdoor activities including hiking, swimming, mountain biking, fishing, nature viewing, snowmobiling, and much more.
Keep in mind that cell phone connection is spotty in the area. The closest store and lodging are available in Atlanta. There is no gas station in town so make sure to fuel up before coming this way. Roads in the area are unpaved and road conditions highly depend on the season. Some roads are completely closed if conditions are bad. With this in mind, it is a good idea to have a 4WD high-clearance vehicle.
Pack all your trash and leave no trace behind!
Power Plant Recreation Area Hot Springs | Facts
Location: 129 miles east of Boise • Central Idaho • USA
Open: 365 days a year
Amenities: Vault toilet, picnic tables, drinking water
Accommodations: Power Plant and Riverside Campgrounds, Beaver Lodge
Hiking distance: Short
Road Access: A 4WD high clearance vehicle is recommended
Day-use fees: None
Elevation: 5,300 ft (1,615 m)
Directions to Power Plant Recreation Area Hot Springs
Atlanta can be accessed via unpaved forest roads only. With this in mind, a 4WD high clearance vehicle is recommended to navigate the area. Some roads are closed during the winter months. Check directions here.
- Follow 1.6 miles east on Main Street/Middle Fork Boise River Road to the Power Plant Campground, 0.4 miles after passing Atlanta Hot Springs.