Incredible lava rock formations. Mind-blowing views. The feel of Utah in Oregon. Owyhee Reservoir, Succor Creek, Upper Leslie Gulch and other slot canyons are all other adventures in the surrounding area. Short drive from Boise. Easy 1.5 mile hike with 400 feet of elevation gain.

Leslie Gulch, a canyon on the border of Oregon and Idaho, is full of almost surreal rock formations made up of tuff from volcanic eruptions 15 million years ago.To walk around in these canyons is like being transported into another world. Timber Gulch, one of many hikes located in Leslie Gulch, is a short 1.5 mile hike into a spectacular natural amphitheater.

Getting There

Near Marsing, Idaho from Highway 55, travel 19 miles south on US 95. There will be a sign on the right to Leslie Gulch Recreation Area; turn onto this dirt road (McBride Road). Follow 8.7 miles to Rockville. Take a right on Succor Creek Road. After 1.7 miles, take a left onto Leslie Gulch Road. Reset odometer and drive 11.7 miles to a one-car pullout. (You will pass Upper Leslie Gulch and Juniper Gulch.) The trail starts on the right. Prior to reaching Timber Gulch there are restrooms on the left back at the Juniper Gulch sign.

The Trail

This is a breezy 1.5 mile hike with only 400 feet of elevation gain. The trail starts by hopping through some sage brush onto a sandy wash. Turn right and follow the wash. At about 0.3 miles, it looks like the trail is blocked by some boulders, but climb around them and keep following the wash as it turns slightly left. There is a little bit of small boulder climbing, but nothing too difficult. The trail veers farther left and slightly uphill and leads you straight into the most amazing amphitheater. Allow for plenty of time to climb around on rocks and take in the peaceful stillness of the area.

If you are looking for an upper view of the canyon, backtrack along your trail until you're almost back at the beginning. On the right you'll see a steep mountain side marked with a small cairn and a faint trail. Follow this up about 0.1 miles. You can go further but use caution—this becomes more of a scramble around boulders and rock slabs. If it rains, stay out of the canyon; the rocks get very slick and the area is prone to flash floods.

Camping is limited to the Slocum campground on the west side of Leslie Gulch. Backpacking is not allowed due to the protected area.

Pack List

  • Sturdy hiking boots
  • Day pack
  • Food
  • Water
  • Hiking essentials
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RT Distance 1.5 Miles
Elevation Gain 400 Feet
Activities Chillin, Photography, Hiking, Rock Climbing
Skill Level Beginner
Season Year Round
Trail Type Out-and-Back
Features
Beach
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Scenic
Wildlife

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Beautiful Hike...a Bit Hard To Find

This is not a trail that is marked and as such makes it a bit hard to find. It's a great hike, however, with lots of trails, human and game, to follow. Most trails in Leslie Gulch start out in a riverbed, so it is best to go in late spring so the trail isn't covered in water in the beginning. Make sure to bring water and good shoes for climbing rocks if you are going to go farther into the canyon!


Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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