One of five units in Thousand Springs State Park, this beautiful island in the Snake River is accessible year-round for hiking, sight-seeing, and admiring the clear springs that give the area its name.
Ritter Island is home to one of the last remaining natural springs in the Thousand Springs complex, Minnie Miller Springs, named after an enterprising Utah woman who built a successful dairy farm on Ritter Island in the early 1900s. Minnie’s barn is preserved on the island today and is open to the public. You can follow a trail from her old farm to the clear springs that bear her name.
There is a two-mile path that circles the island (maintained by state park employees), and Ritter Island is a great place for a picnic. When the weather is warm, it’s an ideal swimming hole or place to paddle a canoe, kayak, or stand-up paddleboard around the island. Follow the channel below the springs to the Snake River to tour the island in a clockwise direction.
For a different view of the island, check out the 1.5 mile trail to Bonnieview, named for Miller’s daughter. The trail leads to the site of the Payne Lewis Ferry Crossing on the Snake River.
In September, Ritter Island hosts the popular annual Thousand Springs Festival, featuring arts and crafts, music, and food and drink.
Ritter Island is easily accessible from the Thousand Springs Scenic Byway.