River Canyon Trail: East Trailhead to Abandoned Homestead is a 4.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Melba, Idaho that features a river and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

Length4.3 miElevation gain127 ftRoute typeOut & back
Kid friendlyFishingHikingHorseback ridingMountain bikingWalkingBird watchingRunningDog friendlyRiverViewsWildflowersWildlifeNo shadeHistoric site
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Getting There

This trail meanders along the Snake River through the Morley Nelson Birds of Prey National Conservation Area, where hundreds of owls, hawks, osprey, eagles, and falcons nest and hunt. The destination is an abandoned homestead built almost entirely from the volcanic rock that the canyon is carved out of.

The following facilities are located at Swan Falls Dam, located 4.4 miles upriver from the trailhead: -Day-use picnic shelter (fees apply, can be reserved) -Garbage services -Accessible restroom facilities -Fishing docks -Interpretive signs -Whitewater boater access to the river (below dam) -Equestrian facility You will pass this on the way to the trailhead. There are also five camping areas between the dam and trailhead.

There is almost no elevation gain or loss on this trail, but it has virtually no shade. Portions of the trail are very sandy and/or rocky. It is possible to walk into the homestead, but one of the roof beams is extremely bowed and looks unsafe. Enter at your own risk. This trail is upriver from Celebration Park and the Halverson Lakes and can be extended to both of them for a longer day hike.

From the Treasure Valley/Kuna area: -Drive south on Swan Falls Dam for approximately 20 miles, down the Snake River Canyon and to the dam -Turn right and cross a large parking lot (this is where the pavement ends, but any vehicle should be able to handle the well-graded dirt road) -Continue on the main dirt road for just over 4 miles to a parking area next to the trailhead You'll pass the trailhead for Dedication Point on the way, another great easy hike with interpretive signs and information about the Morley Nelson Conservation Area (https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/idaho/dedication-point)

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Reviews (17)
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Mario Moreno
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Hiking

Nice and calm hike along side the river with beautiful views. my wife and I enjoyed it.

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Madeleine Bonneville
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Hiking

Beautiful trail. Very easy with more than enough reward. No one else out other than the birds on a Thursday afternoon. Will definitely come back!

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Kelli S.
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HikingBugsGreat!No shade

The trail was mostly dry with only a few muddy spots which made it a nice trail to hike in February. The homestead was pretty interesting to see. I deducted a star because there were quite a few flying insects swarming in the area which was surprising considering it's still winter. They were a little annoying in spots but not too bad overall. It's definitely worth the drive to check out this trail.

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Greg Hart
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HikingGreat!No shade

Nice easy trail along the banks of the Snake River! It was still fairly warm in the low winter sun on a day with no snow on the ground. The homestead is cool, but it looks like part of the roof might collapse any day. Great hike if you're day tripping to Swan Falls Dam.

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Melchor Herrera
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Hiking
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Scott Jones
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Hiking

Well maintained trail along the snake River and below the close of the canyon. Lots of water fowl.

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Sara Gibbons
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Hiking
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Ryan Hogue
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Backpacking
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Paul Hoefer
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Jaime Campbell
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Matt Lynard
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Hiking
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Jackson Shauger
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Hiking
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Kim Sherman
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Hiking
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Michelle Martin
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Randy Roper
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Hiking
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Justin Kellerer
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Hiking
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Hiking Buddies
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