Goldbug Hot Springs

The last weekend in May, after going to Missoula for a Ryan Adams concert, a few friends and I set out for Goldbug Hot Springs in Idaho. The images we saw were amazing. Stepped pools of hot springs hanging out on the side of a mountain. We were told the three mile hike was strenuous. And that we would probably see people skinny dipping since it’s so remote.  It was amazing. Simply amazing.

We started out from Missoula which made our drive there only about three hours, it’s around four hours from Bozeman. We used this article to guide us to the falls. They are just south of Elk Bend, ID. You turn at mile marker 282, there is not a sign, and drive down what looks like a private road. It’s not. At the end there is private land and the trail head. You will walk through private land for about a quarter mile before you’re back on national forest land. The trail climbs pretty quickly with some switchbacks then levels out for about a mile. The last section is pretty straight up, but the hike is only two miles, it’s not as bad as everyone made it sound. It would be brutal in the sun, there was not a lot of shade, but we had a perfect overcast sky.

You climb all the way up the valley – Photo by Noah Bostrom

Once we arrived at the top, we did not run into anyone skinny dipping, through I can see why you would. There was a large family up there. We tried out a few pools and settled on one of the warmer ones for a bit. Once the family left, we took over the larger pool they were in. The temperature was perfect to sit in forever. And there was a waterfall on the side of it that was also perfect. I don’t really know how else to describe it. Go check it out. It’s worth a diversion.

Photo by Noah Bostrom

Photo by Noah Bostrom

Photo by Noah Bostrom

Photo by Noah Bostrom On our way back down we meet a few groups hauling their camping gear in to set up for the night. We chose to camp back down the road, North of Elk Bend, along the Salmon River. It was beautiful. There are a couple of campsites along there, no amenities and it was awesome. We sent up camp, including a hammock and had dinner done in an hour. Perfect car camping.

Photo by Noah Bostrom

Moon Rising

On the way home E and I were on the look out for another adventure, hiking or otherwise. We turned around to go down a promising looking dirt road leading to Vipond Park near Dewey, MT and wound up in an ghost town that was apparently an old silver mine. There was a a saw mill or something up there too.

It was kinda of awesome and one of the wonderful things about Montana.