Idaho lake with trees

Spring Activities in Stanley, ID

Idaho is said to have 12 seasons: winter, fool’s spring, second winter, spring of deception, third winter, mud season, actual spring, summer, Hell’s front porch, false fall, second summer (1 week), and actual fall. In Stanley, a spring activity means that you are most likely going to experience sunshine, rain or snow, mud, and puddles. Stanley usually has some form of snow on the ground until May in the low country, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy some sunshine along with it. Here are our three favorite spring activities in Stanley, ID!


While the beaches won’t be ready to roam quite yet, there is still plenty of sun in March and April. We love to cross country ski, or fatbike, as the morning conditions are usually incredible! The Sawtooth Ski Festival occurs on the first weekend in March each year. There are many scenic walks in the valley, and we recommend walking into Redfish Lake! Good snow boots are usually all you need, as the path is often packed down and groomed very well. Redfish Lake is gorgeous in the spring, and you will have it virtually to yourself. You can experience the very slow melt of ice off the lake. The ice usually comes off the lake around the 1st week of May. Stop in at the Stanley High Country Inn for Winter Dining until the first week of April, it is the perfect place to eat before or after your Sawtooth Spring Adventure. 


The ultimate spring activity in Stanley, Id is steelhead fishing! These amazing fish travel all the way from the Pacific Ocean back home to Stanley, Idaho to spawn and finish their amazing lives. Steelhead fishing combines winter hiking and fly fishing into one sport. The banks of the Salmon still have lots of snow, but the clearing of the natural ice dams means that the steelheads are on their way home! Our beautiful Redfish Riverside Inn sits right on the banks of the Salmon River, and we have had lucky guests catch steelhead right off our porch! If you are looking for some gear or local knowledge, check out the Stanley Fly Shop! 



Springtime means it is time to hit the road! With three scenic byways all meeting up in Stanley, ID, going for a little day drive from Stanley, Id is the perfect spring activity. A trip to the Yankee Fork and the ghost town of Custer is a beautiful hour drive that follows the wind of the river the whole way.  If you just want to follow the Salmon River, keep driving along highway 75 north towards the great little town of Challis. Or if you would like to head south through the Sawtooth Valley, a quick trip to Sun Valley (one hour) over Galena Summit will provide you with incredible views! There are also lots of great things to do in the historic ski town of Sun Valley once you arrive!

Whatever spring activities in Stanley, Idaho that you choose, making the Redfish Riverside Inn your base ensures that you will have an incredible experience staying right on the beautiful Salmon River!