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Craters of the Moon

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Craters of the Moon National Monument Craters of the Moon National Monument a vast ocean of lava flows with scattered islands of cinder cones and sagebrush. We invite you to explore this "weird and scenic landscape" where yesterday's volcanic events are likely to continue tomorrow... The visitor center is located off Highway 20/26/93 approximately 20 miles west of Arco. The Visitor Center is open daily.

The Big Lost River and Pioneer Mountains - In addition to camping and hiking, recreational opportunities abound in the National Forest that surrounds Arco. Contact: USDA Forest Service

USDA Forest Service Big Lost River Valley

Fishing in the Big Lost River - Mackay Reservoir, and countless creeks and mountain lakes.
Area hunters scout for deer, elk, bear, antelope, mountain lion and fowl with cameras or guns in the area's beautiful mountain wilderness!
ATV or snowmobile riding up Antelope Canyon, Pass Creek or the Copper Basin is simply beautiful. These are just a few of the routes available.

Hang Gliding

Hang gliders launch off of the mountain slope of King Mountain. There is an annual hang gliding competition also:,

Snake River Plain - A vast area of sagebrush and lava, this high desert is a stark contrast to the mountain ranges that border it. Most of it is managed by the Bureau of Land Management and the area offers a whole new set of recreational possibilities. Visitors can camp, ride all-terrain vehicles (ATV trail starts in our parking lot), hunt, and explore volcanic areas such as Box Canyon, Kings Bowl, Big Southern Butte,
Ice caves and early inhabitants - Arco and the surrounding area have been a crossroads for early inhabitants for thousands of years. Evidence of their activities can be found in several locations.
Prehistoric Idaho / Ice Caves

Ice Caves Photographs
Oregon trail - Follow Goodale's cutoff across the lava fields.

Goodale's Cutoff - Oregon Trail

Ghost towns - South of Arco towards Craters of The Moon you'll find Champagne Creek rd. leading to the small settlement of Era. This town, which once had nearly twelve hundred residents, blossomed into existence when the Horn Silver Mine was discovered by Frank Martin in 1885. At first the ore was hauled by freight wagons to the smelter in Hailey. Then a twenty stamp dry crusher mill was built just south of the settlement. The mill operated until 1888, when the ore body pinched out, and during these few years Era was at its peak. Like so many mining towns of its day, it had a stage station, a livery stable, three merchandise stores, a drug store, an assay office, dwelling houses, and the usual saloons for the thirsty. Farther up Champagne Creek are several other mines and the remains of old cabins scattered around the hillsides.
Anyone got a metal detector? A list of Idaho ghost towns can be found here:

Idaho Ghost Towns

Mackay Mine Hill - Just outside the town of Mackay, lots of cool old buildings and remains.

MacKay Mine Hill

2015 Lost River Motel


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