Hey there hot springs lovers! My name is Tonya and welcome to my article on the Kirkham Hot Springs of Idaho. My husband, Seth and I have been married for over four years and we have three precious rescue pups.
I’m from Gainesville, Georgia (45 miles north of Atlanta) and have lived here my entire life. Travel became a big passion early on in mine and my husband’s relationship. We took our first cruise together to The Bahamas in 2015 and have had the itch to explore the rest of the world ever since.
Visiting Boise & the Kirkham Hot Springs
We traveled to Boise, Idaho for my brother’s wedding in January of 2021. The wedding was held in a western suburb, but we stayed in a hotel downtown for two nights. Outside of the wedding festivities our itinerary included hiking to the top of Table Rock (stunning views of Boise), soaking in the Kirkham Hot Springs, and trying out the restaurants and bars.
Anytime we book a trip, I always go to Pinterest and read other bloggers posts about the destination. It gives good insight on what you want to make time for and the things or places you should skip. Kirkham Hot Springs was somewhere that popped up in multiple posts that I read and thankfully we were able to cut out some time to make the drive there.
These hot springs turned out to be my favorite part of our entire trip – aside from gaining a sister, of course! The springs are located in Lowman, Idaho near the official Boise National Forest Campground – about an hour and 45 minutes drive from downtown Boise. We were there in the winter, so the drive was a bit slower due to some icy/snowy weather conditions.
There are two routes that it gives you from downtown and both had beautiful views. There is a parking lot at the trailhead leading to the springs. It’s a short walk, but does include stairs and rocky terrain to get into the springs. It can be slippery, so I recommend water shoes to protect your feet.
There were around 10 pools – all are different sizes and vary in temperature. The springs are located along the Payette River and are visible from the road. I loved that our experience was during the winter since we were surrounded by snowy mountains and the springs were steaming.
Best Memories from the Kirkham Hot Springs
A group of three was leaving as we made our way down the rocky hillside so we were able to snag the smaller pool that they were using. I remember stepping in and being amazed at how warm the pool was. It was extra welcoming after stripping down to a bathing suit in 28 degree weather.
My favorite part after getting to the pool was just taking in our beautiful surroundings. It was a full immersion into nature. The sound of the hot springs, waterfalls, the river running, and the snowy views were stunning.
Where to Stay & Other Hot Springs Nearby
I recommend staying in Downtown Boise if you want any sort of nightlife. We stayed in a Home2 Suites by Hilton and it was in a great location. We walked a few blocks to restaurants multiple times. We always book with Hilton and use their rewards program to earn free stays, upgrades, etc.
Kirkham are the most well known hot springs in the state. I haven’t been to any other hot springs in Idaho, but here is a list of some that you could check out: Pine Flats Hot Springs, Rocky Canyon Hot Springs, Trail Creek Hot Springs and Burgdorf Hot Springs. I recommend visiting as many as you can because they are all unique. You will be pleasantly surprised.
Need to Know Before you Go
Kirkham Hot Springs are said to be most popular during the summer, but it was crowded while we were there in the winter as well. Be prepared to wait your turn to get into the springs if one is not available when you arrive. I suggest that you pack a towel, change of clothes, snacks/drinks and water shoes. I would also bring a trash bag to ensure you leave no trace.