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.

Trip Itineraries

Ice Fishing: Hit Up Southern Idaho’s Hot Spots

When the leaves begin to drop, it’s time for late-season hunters and ice fishing enthusiasts to gear up and head out. The Magic Valley is one of the state’s best areas for ice fishing — the long winters here freeze great spots such as Magic Valley Reservoir, Lake Walcott, and Lower Goose Creek Reservoir.

On the Hunt in Southern Idaho

Southern Idaho is a bonanza for hunters. Whether you’re on the hunt for pheasants at a private ranch or plotting your deer strategy in Unit 54, you’ll find ample hunting opportunities. Fans of elusive game, like mountain lions and wolves, can hunt their prey on vast late-season grounds in the Albion Mountains and the South Hills.

Head Into the Great Indoors for Cold-Weather Fun

Southern Idaho is full of beautiful landscapes and year-round outdoor activities, but when the weather gets really nasty it’s nice to have an indoor plan. These favorites offer tons of fun for everyone from kids to seniors.

Keep Cabin Fever at Bay All Winter Long

Does the prospect of another winter of smog and slushy snow have you down? Head to Southern Idaho! Winter is ...

Top 10 Things to Do in Hagerman

Life in Hagerman is built around the water. The Snake River flows to its west, hot springs gurgle up from ...

Top 10 Things to Do in Albion

Albion may be a tiny town — fewer than 300 people reside there — but it’s a great place to ...

Thousand Springs Festival for the Arts

Great entertainment for the whole family at scenic Ritter Island More than 4,000 people are expected to attend the Thousand ...

Top 10 Things to Do in Burley

This charming small town is big on outdoor activities — everything from river boating and bass fishing to some of ...

Make It an Epic Autumn

Orchards ripe with fruit, sunny rounds of golf, the latest vintage — Southern Idaho is bursting with delights during autumn. There’s so much to take in that we’ve developed a best-of-the-best list to use as your guide to fall fun.

Fore! Through Fall at Southern Idaho Golf Courses

Other courses throughout the state may be winding down their seasons, but in Southern Idaho fun on the links lasts well into autumn. Average temperatures in September remain in the high 70s before dropping to the pleasant mid-60s in October and brisk high 40s in November. Autumn golfing in Southern Idaho is perfect for players: Wide-open skies and very little rain.