scenic canoeingA casual observer might think there are only miles and miles of sagebrush plains in the high desert of the “Borderlands”. But hidden in the vast country are incredible canyons like those sculpted by the Jarbidge and Bruneau Rivers. And further east is another scenic desert canyon carved by Salmon Falls Creek. The creek flows from Nevada into Idaho and the Salmon Falls Creek Reservoir.

The stretch of Salmon Falls Creek that begins just outside Jackpot, Nevada and flows into the backwaters of the reservoir is a great one or two day trip for canoeists. The put-in for the seven mile trip is just off the highway, but once you’re on the water you quickly leave civilization behind. A couple of boaters who run River Rats White Water Toys in Twin Falls think the two state float is a great getaway.

Dennis Pettygrove canoeing “It’s still kind of remote and wilderness and yet it’s so close it’s like right out your back door. You start a mile from Jackpot where all the lights and almost like being in a metropolis or something and yet you’ve got this wilderness and it’s quite inaccessible as you noticed today.

There aren’t many roads that come down in, not many places you’re going to get out. It’s definitely a wilderness experience. You know that you are out there on your own…Every trip is different. I see different things whether it’s different rock formations. There are all kinds of wildlife…It’s a spectacular canyon. It has a lot of the vertical features people expect in the Sawtooths but in a canyon. It’s a nice stretch of water. It is challenging. A lot of twists and turns to it and for canoeing it’s quite challenging that way.”

--Dennis Pettygrove, canoeist--

tony tucker “The canyon is really pretty. I like the fact that usually when we’re here we’re not here with a lot of people. We’re usually the only group canoeing it on the trip. It’s kind of remote. It’s off the beaten path. There’s no road to intrude. I like that a lot. I like just a good day out on the water, get some good exercise and get away from everything else...

All the desert rivers are just amazing. The canyons, every canyon. I've run the Jarbidge, I've run the Bruneau and Salmon Falls, I haven’t made it to the Owyhee yet. But all these canyons are just incredible. They are kind of like the forgotten thing for most people in Idaho. All of us have seen Stanley and the Sawtooths but the desert canyons. There’s a lot of wildlife. It’s really, really neat to float these canyons because not everybody gets to see them and what is there.”

--Tony Tucker, canoeist--