Idaho Hiking, Nature September 30, 2016
10 Glorious Waterfront Trails In Idaho To Take On A Fall Day
When you want to experience the true beauty of Idaho’s vibrant, colorful autumn foliage, you can always take a road trip or Sunday drive down one of our incredible scenic byways. But for truly getting out and enjoying the seasonal beauty, what could be better than a leisurely stroll through the trees? Feeling the fallen leaves crunch beneath your feet and smelling the crisp air on your face is a simple pleasure that only comes but once a year – and now’s the time to enjoy it!
Fortunately, Idaho is home to numerous waterfront trails, bike paths, and nature trails that feature beautiful waterfront views alongside lush autumn foliage, perfect for enjoying with family and friends. And don’t forget to take a few photos along the way! Here are 10 gorgeous waterfront trails in Idaho that are perfect for fall:
1. Pend Oreille Bay Trail
This brand new waterfront trail alongside one of northern Idaho's most scenic lakes is lined with plenty of deciduous trees that make a colorful contrast the crisp blue water.
2. Idaho Falls River Walk
Idaho Falls is renowned for its breathtaking path along the Snake River, which runs straight through town. Here, visitors can overlook the falls and enjoy multiple picnic and garden areas, but come fall, this scenic trail bursts into photogenic color.
3. Big Wood River Trail
Tucked away near Hailey and stretching over the water, this unique bow-and-arrow shaped bridge connects both sides of the Draper Wood Preserve. The Big Wood River is already a gorgeous, lushly lined river, but the greenway path through the area is a beautiful addition that is breathtaking in autumn in particular.
4. Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes, Harrison
The Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes is an extensive walking and biking path along Coeur d'Alene Lake. While the most traveled portions are directly in CDA, exploring this waterfront path just outside the city keeps the waterfront views and perfectly colored trees at their scenic best without the distractions of city buildings.
5. Big Springs
Nestled inside Island Park, Big Springs is a beautiful and historic natural spring to explore in any season, but when the weather turns chilly the magnificent foliage creates an especially postcard-worthy scene that features Johnny Sack Cabin.
6. Boise River Greenbelt
25 miles of lush, well-maintained waterfront beauty along the river, quaint crossing bridges, and views of the foothills make this gem a major draw for Idaho's capital city residents. The vibrant foliage come fall is just icing on the cake and absolutely perfect for a refreshing mid-morning bike ride.
7. Blackwell Island Park Nature Trail
Meandering through the trees as well as overlooking the water, this quaint trail in northern Idaho is popular for good reason, especially during the vibrant fall season. There are also plenty of benches for nature and wildlife viewing.
8. Mesa Falls Nature Trail and Scenic Byway
The Mesa Falls Scenic Byway is absolutely breathtaking in autumn and perfect for a Sunday drive, but to get up close and personal with the fall colors, simply exploring the nature trail around the upper and lower falls will offer more beauty than you can possibly imagine. And the dramatic cascade in the background makes it all the more romantic!
9. Palisades Creek Nature Trail
We've written about this hike before, but if you haven't explored the Palisades yet, it's a bucket list must-do. Framed by the dramatic Tetons and leading up to two mountain lakes after meandering alongside the picturesque creek, this wooded trail has plenty of reds, golds, and oranges to light your heart on fire.
10. Silver Creek Preserve Nature Trail
This scenic refuge and fishing haven is mind-blowingly colorful when autumn hits, and the quaint boardwalk nature trails that meanders over the water is nothing short of perfect for families and couples alike.
Oh, Idaho. There are so many miles of rivers and trails in our gorgeous state that no list could ever be complete. Do you have any favorite trails to explore in fall? Do they come with waterfront views?
For more of Idaho’s best fall activities, check out these
charming pumpkin patches, unique corn mazes, or check out the fall foliage road trip we mentioned earlier.
For another trail not included on the list (waterfront overlook included), this “
Fairy Trail” is inspiring and rejuvenating beyond words.