Idaho State Parks

One of the most beautiful things about the United States is its National and State Parks. In these parks, the beauty of the wild is preserved. Here in Idaho there are many of the US's most breathtaking and most exquisite parks.

One of the most famous of these parks is Bear Lake. Bear Lake straddles the southeastern Idaho and northern Utah borders. The park attracts visitors from all over the United States every year. The lake is especially known for it's turquoise water and is often referred to as the Carribbean of the Rockies. The color comes from the natural limestone in the soil of the surrounding area.

The lake is a great place for an inexpensive camping trip. Campgrounds range from basic tent and fire areas to RV hook-ups. Bear Lake is a fully equipt natural resort.

The Lake is also great for boating and fishing. Due to its depth and length, Bear Lake is able to handle most boats. The fishing is quite a great experience as well. Bear Lake is the only place you can catch three rare species of fish. The Bonneville Cisco, the Bonneville Whitefish and the Bear Lake Whitefish only life in Bear Lake. Many fisherman excitedly come to Bear Lake just to fish for these endemic species.

Bear Lake is also the home of the Raspberry Day's Festival. This celebration is held in mid summer and is all about community. There are many different events that are part of Raspberry Days. Some of the most notable events are: the Raspberry Day's Parade, a rodeo and a firework show. Other events like: a 5k run, pancake breakfast, and the Miss Berry Princess Pagent are also part of the fun.

One of the most mysterious aspects of Bear Lake is the local legend of the Bear Lake Monster. Much like the legend of the Loch Ness Monster, the Monster of Bear Lake is an attention grabber. Many different 'sightings' of the monster have emerged throughout the years. These sightings describe it as a crocodile shaped beast or as a giant serpent, not many of the descriptions are congruent.

If you'd rather not chance an encounter with the Monster, than maybe you'd like Eagle Island State Park. The 545 acre park is on the edge of the City of Eagle, (Ada County). The park was originally a prison farm owned by the Department of Lands. However, in 1977 the farm was given to the state for a park.

In Eagle Island Park, there are many different things to do. If you ride horses, there are five miles of trails for that purpose. There's also a beach for swimming, which includes a full functional water slide. With paddles boats, picnic areas and disc golf, Eagle Island is truly a multipurpose park. The beautiful harmony of Eagle Island is a valued pearl of the Treasure Valley.

Lucky Peak Lake is another Treasure Valley favorite. The lake is actually a reservoir of the Boise River, that was a byproduct of the Lucky Peak Dam. The dam was created in 1955 for irrigation into the valley. The subsequent Lucky Peak Lake has become a gathering place for many boaters, water skiers, picnic goers and more.

The lake's location makes it accessible to anyone in Ada and the surrounding counties. Many individuals and groups have come to enjoy Lucky Peak Lake. The picturesque rocks and water are a great place to relax and play. Leashed pets are also allowed at the lake.

A more historic park in Idaho is the Three Island Crossing State Park located in Glenns Ferry. The park is a succession of three islands that provide a pathway across the Snake river. The Park commemorates the efforts of the Oregon Trail Pioneers. When they reached this spot in the Snake River, the pioneers had to decide to cross the river, or to continue on the dry rocky side of the plains. Covered wagons, like the ones they used, were very difficult to use and crossing the a river posed great dangers for them and their belongings, so the decision to cross the river again was a difficult one.

So, no matter what part of Idaho you go to, or what you are into, there is a state park that will entertain you. These amazing parks preserve the beauty of the past and they should continue to do so.