Council Mountain Hot Springs

General Description: A poop load of hot water flowing out next to another Warm Springs Creek
General Location: Western Idaho Southwest of McCall
Pool Type: Sand and Gravel
Pool Temps: Extremely Hot (106° - 110° F)
Accessibility: Year round
Restrictions: None
Elevation: 4400 feet.
Distance from road: 2.00 miles.
Map Reference: Payette National Forest West Half (springs not marked) or Council Mountain ID USGS 7.5 minute quadrangle

The Hot Spring:

  Council Mountain Hot Springs are in a forested valley at the end of a beautiful 2 mile hike in the Payette National Forest.  Extremely hot water emerges from several springs on the side of a steep river bank cascading into Warm Springs Creek.  Large portions of the hillside are colored with an orange algae that we have learned to associate with hot springs.  The soaking situation changes throughout the year depending on the season but there is enough hot water that a soak is always possible.  During the winter and spring the hot water mixes with the cold creek water in rock lined sand and gravel pools along the edge of the creek.  The temperature can be controlled by moving the rocks around on the walls.  During the summer and fall the entire creek is hot.  Sometimes it is so hot that you can not soak near the springs and need to go further down the creek.  Volunteer built log dams create pools along the creek at different locations.  There are even a couple bedrock slides into bedrock pools that can be the perfect temperature at the right time of year.

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There seems to have been a

There seems to have been a "gullywhumper" sometime in 2015 that washed out all the log pools. The log pools existed during my previous visit in 2014. Bring tools to create your own pools!

This spring is fabulous in

This spring is fabulous in late spring. You are trying your luck anytime before or after. (To cold, to hot) it has a natural waterslide and a wonderful 2 to 3 foot deep pool that holds 2 to 3 people comfortably. The hikes during the early morning or evening are beautiful to see the sunrise or sunset. And after nighttime is great to watch the stars and a full moon if it's available. Make sure you take all your camping supplies with you, however you have small towns on side after you travel. It is a good 20 miles to a town, so make sure you have all your amenities.

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