When mother nature cools down Southeast Idaho and covers the landscape with a fresh, soft blanket of snow, winter explorers come out to play.
Southeast Idaho spoils visitors with a variety of winter wonderland adventures. From ice fishing to snowmobiling and yurt camping to down-hill skiing, Southeast Idaho has the cure to your winter blues. So, whether you are a hardcore winter enthusiast or just want a snow day, there’s a perfect adventure waiting for you! Plan your Winter vacation now!
POWDER SLED PARADISE
Sled over 600 miles of Southeast Idaho’s groomed, uncrowded snowmobile trails. Sparkling snowcapped trees, fresh air, and wildlife are only a few of the treasures one can encounter on your route through the majestic mountains and valleys. With easy access to trail heads and rentals available in many locations. Southeast Idaho is a perfect location for your next snowmobile trip. If serenity is what you seek, sled right from the cabin into the green pines at Cub River. Bear Lake Valley is another sublime location for snowmobiling, as it’s surrounded by mountain ranges and 350 miles of groomed snowmobile trails!
Veteran riders can cruise off the groomed trails and into wide open spaces filled with deep powder or summit one of the nearby mountains for a spectacular view. Snowmobile season begins as early as late November and goes well into April. Out-of-staters just need to purchase a non- resident snowmobile user certificate.
Don’t forget your hand warmers!
ADRENALINE PUMPING PEBBLE
Pebble Creek Ski Area is Southeast Idaho’s go-to spot for downhill skiing and is quickly becoming an uncovered gem in the ski community. Switch backs and fresh powder are calling! Located 20 minutes south of Pocatello, Pebble Creek offers 1,100 acres of skiable snow and 54 runs with an extensive bunny hill and challenging upper slopes. Show off your bag of tricks in one of Pebble Creek’s two terrain parks featuring rails, boxes, and jumps.
Advanced skiers can take a ski lift to the upper mountain and methodically carve their way down the mountain in fresh snow. Are you or a family member a first timer? No problem! Pebble Creek offers ski lessons for all ages. Whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, or professional skier, Pebble Creek will test your abilities.
Ski and snowboard rentals, ski passes, and a warm, homey ski lodge are all available on location. Speaking of ski lodge. make sure to try Pebble Creek’s famous fries! The fries are locally farmed and cut fresh to order. Fit as many fries as you can into your basket without paying extra!
So grab your skis or snowboard and a couple of friends and hit the slopes at Pebble Creek!
SKINNY SKI CENTRAL
Step into your skis or strap on your snowshoes. Southeast Idaho provides hundreds of miles of open ski trails for winter expeditions across Idaho’s high country. Check out Idaho’s Park N’ Ski program with the Mink Creek trails close to Pocatello. The area has seven plowed parking lots providing access to five trails. When you buy a Park N’ Ski pass, all money goes to maintaining snow removal for parking spots and grooming trails. Just leave the sticker in your car and hit the trails!
Another site that is sure to be a highlight for the family is the East Fork Mink Creek Nordic Center. This area is only a 25-minute drive south of Pocatello and boasts 20 kilometers of groomed classic and skate trails. Pack a lunch to eat in the 30 foot yurt, available every day for warming up.
Separate snowshoe trails and a sledding hill are on location for families who are itching for some outdoor fun. Lessons, cross-country ski and snowshoe rentals are provided for a minimal fee. For cross country skiing grab a day pass. Snowshoeing does not require a pass!
You’ll also want to check out Bailey Creek and Kelly Park. Kelley Park is located in Soda Springs and offers 7 kilometers of skiing and snowshoeing action. It’s ideal for first timers or anyone looking for some easy, winter fun. Bailey Park also has groomed trails and is located about 6 miles south of Soda Springs. The ski trails are easy at the beginning but become more difficult the further one For a small donation, enjoy the solitude of a wintry day and keep an eye out for wildlife. Dogs are allowed at Bailey Creek and Kelley Park but must be kept under control and waste must be taken care of so bring bags!
The spectacular scenic routes of cross-country ski and snowshoe trails are a wonderful way to enjoy winter in Southeast Idaho!
BRING YOUR BAIT, POP UP & CATCH A COLD ONE
Grab a friend and break the ice! Southeast Idaho is home to 31 reservoirs and lakes which makes it easy to find your next ice fishing hole. Enjoy great fishing and glistening. snowy mountain ranges while drinking a hot cup of cocoa.
Chesterfield reservoir is located east of Pocatello and is 1,245 acres, plenty of space to catch your limit! Chesterfield contains rainbow trout, cutthroat trout, rainbow/cutthroat hybrids, and brown trout. Daniels Reservoir is a smaller ice fishing site west of Malad and offers 361 acres of ice fishing possibilities. Daniels has rainbow trout, cutthroat trout, and rainbow/cutthroat hybrids. Devils Creek Reservoir is a great location for a family ice fishing trip! The reservoir is located a few miles north of Malad City with 142 acres of water, and has an excellent reputation for fishing, with rainbow trout as the primary line puller. Devils Creek is perfect for half-day fishing trips as it is located right off 1-15 You don’t have to worry about getting too far off the beaten path! Make sue to wear warm layers, drink lots of fluids, and check ice conditions before heading out on the ice. Look at fishing regulations before you go and have your licenses with you.
YEARNING FOR A YURT
Make your camping trip memorable by staying in one of Southeast Idaho’s yurts! The uniqueness of yurt camping is a marvelous way to experience Idaho! Yurts are circular dwellings with a domed top. Built with wood or concrete floors, yurts are able to withstand snow, wind, and every other harsh element that can accompany Southeast Idaho winters. Check out the Portneuf Range Yurt System with four locations available for rent. Two yurts are easily accessible and great for families. The other two yurts are located high in the range which give an excellent day trip to back country skiers and boarders.
The Portneuf Range Yurts are each outfitted with bunk beds, firewood, pots, a Coleman gas cooking stove, a wood burning stove, and an axe. Another yurt not associated with the Portneuf Range Yurt System but still close to Pocatello is the yurt at East Fork Mink Creek Nordic Center. This yurt is located right by the ski and snowshoe trails and the big sledding hill so it’s an ideal camping spot for large groups. It has a wood stove, picnic tables, and storage cubbies which double as beds when stacked. Also be sure to check out the yurts at Downata Hot Springs where you can sleep in a real bed and soak in the hot pools.
Warm Your Soul
Get some sleep in cozy Southeast Idaho lodging then get up and do it all over again!
Southeast Idaho is sure to have a frosty adventure that will bring a smile to your rosy cheeks this winter season. Whether it’s hardcore skiing and snowmobiling or a relaxing ice fishing trip, Idaho High Country welcomes you.