July 16, 2017

Complete Guide to Idaho Hot Springs: Second Edition

A review of Doug Roloff's Complete Guide to Idaho Hot Springs: Second Edition. 

Volunteering information about Hot Springs is a tough proposition. The springs listed in this guide are generally public record.

Doug Roloff has put together what I would consider the definitive guide to Hot Springing in the state of Idaho. The book lists over a hundred Hot Springs in Idaho (and a few in Oregon). Having visited 44% of the Hot Springs listed in the book, I can attest to its accuracy (at least for the ones I'm familiar with, and having researched most of the others).

This book is packed full of helpful information. An insightful introduction to various factors of Hot Springery is featured at the beginning of the book. Roloff then cordons off Hot Springs by geographical areas. He has included maps, Global Positioning coordinates (sometimes approximate), hiking information, pool temps, and a wealth of information.

Idaho has over 224 Hot Springs, so this book is not exhaustive. It doesn't feature commercial or privatized Hot Springs (though some closed/privatized ones, like Last Chance/Krigbaum). The content of the book seems to be aimed mostly at unimproved Hot Springs (though the pools at Sharkey or Baumgartner would be exceptions). I think it is generally aimed at unimproved or free Hot Springs. Some of the Hot Springs are probably less than soakable, as they don't all feature pools (such as Ninemeyer, etc on the road to Atlanta). The book features black and white photographs of almost all the springs (Mormon Ranch Hot Springs featured a nice vista).

The Hot Springs chosen evidence thoughtful insight in the presentation of excellent spring choices. One of the bonuses that come with this book is camping information near the various springs. I wish that I'd found this book long ago. It would have saved me from traipsing up a creek in the dark (probably more than once).

Important aspects of this book:

  • Idaho focused
  • Generally unimproved or non-commercial springs 
  • Navigation and hiking directions as well as Global Positioning coordinates
  • Black and white photos of almost all of the springs


Here are a selection of books that I found helpful in finding and enjoying Idaho's Hot Springs:
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