Boise National Forest Service Nearly Closed Kirkham Hot Springs For Good, Instead They Implemented New Rules for Use
Idaho has so much to offer in the outdoors. We have more hot springs than most states and some nice and close to the Boise area. One of the most popular and stellar hot springs nearby is Kirkham. The area used to be open for over night use and had an operational camping community with a few spots that could be reserved. Due to the unkept manner of Kirkham hot springs and surrounding area the camping became prohibited.
Last summer a photo went locally viral that showed a disastrous garbage mess left behind near at the top the parking lot in the public bathroom building. The gate doors have been closed and now visitors must walk to the springs. The area continues to have problems and issues with garbage left behind and people going off the tails and damaging areas.
Due to the continued issues there was a time when the Forest Service seriously considered closing the area all together as in not letting people even walk down to it. After meeting with locals from Lowman they decided to instead keep it open but locals will help the Forest Service by volunteering and taking turns going by to check on the area. Lowman business owners get business from people coming to visit the hot springs in the area so it is well worth it for them to keep them open and operational.
The moral of the story though... pack out what you pack in, follow the rules and be respectful to nature and other people. According to Idaho News 6, "Moving forward the forest service is working on a redesign for Kirkham Hot Springs using funds from the Great American Outdoors Act, they are still hashing out ideas but did say they expect to complete the process sometime this year."