RiderPlanet USA Motorcycle And ATV Trails
HomeFind ATV TrailsATV and Dirt Bike ArticlesCalendar of ATV and Motorcycle EventsSupport CenterDonate
Help 

South Hills

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Other Names

Third Fork Heart Attack Loop, Wahlstrom Hollow Trail #238, Third Fork Rock Creek, Magpie Basin, Sawtooth National Forest, Dry Flat Spring, Cow Spring, Elk Butte, Cotton Spring, Bear Gulch, Pike Mountain, Telephone Canyon, Harrington Peak, Martindale Fork, Rock Creek Trail System, Diamondfield Jack Campground, Porcupine Springs Campground, Pettit Campground, Minidoka Ranger District, Cassia Mountains

Last Known StatusOpen

If you are coming to southern Idaho to ride, this spot should not be overlooked. With over 50+ miles of designated ATV trails, twisty mountain single track, secluded swimming holes, cool camping spots and scenery ranging from high desert rolling hills to rugged, forested mountain and canyon views, there is something for everyone.

Most of the trails are marked and form both short and long loops. Camping ranges from primitive tent sites to designated campgrounds. Bear Gulch, Porcupine Springs, Bostetter and Father and Sons campgrounds cater to the ATV/side by side crowd while motorcycle riders will find direct access to single track at Harrington Fork (day use only), Third Fork and Fifth Fork trailheads.

Most campgrounds are free but are on a first come basis. Porcupine Springs, Lower and Upper Penstemon Campgrounds charge a small fee but can also be reserved.

Off road vehicles must display a current Idaho OHV Sticker. Note that this trail system is also very popular with mountain bikes and equestrian riders, so use caution.

ATV and UTV riders can access South Hills if staying in Jackpot by using the BLM access roads that are found on the outskirts of town and head in a northeast direction.

Trail Map... Nearby ATV Trails...

REGULATIONS

Permit RequiredYesIdaho OHV Registration Sticker
Dates OpenMay 16 - November 30
Other ATV Stickers AcceptedNoA non-resident registration sticker must be purchased. (As of Janury 2020, Idaho no longer honors stickers from other states.)
Spark ArrestorYesA spark arresting exhaust silencer or end cap is required for all vehicles.
Noise LimitYes
Whip FlagsNot Required
Maximum Vehicle WidthYes (50 inches)has entrance gate or posts
Allow Dirt Bikes, Trail Bikes and Motorcycles Motorcycles & Dirt BikesPermitted
Allow All Terrain Vehicles / Quads / Four Wheelers ATVsPermitted(maximum width 50 inches)
Allow Utility Terrain Vehicles, Side by Sides (SXS), RZR UTV & SXSPermitted(maximum width 50 inches)
Allow 4x4 Jeeps, SUVs and 4 x 4 Trucks with License Plates 4x4 & Jeeps (registered)Some Areaspermitted on designated forest service roads
Dune Buggy & Sand Rail
4x4 (unregistered)
Permitted(maximum width 50 inches)
2 Stroke EnginesNo Restriction
MX Helmet RequiredYouth Onlyrequired for persons under 18 by state law
(RiderPlanet strongly recommends helmets for all riders.)
Camping / Overnight RV Parking CampingSome Areas(camp in developed sites only)
Campfire Restrictions CampfiresSome Areas(permitted in developed campsites only)
Night RidingUnknown
Trail BlazingProhibitedkeep vehicle on trail
AlcoholNo Restriction
Rule EnforcementFew/Periodic
CommentMost trails open around mid May through end of November but some open in June through September - see Forest Service MVUM for details.
Advertisement

TERRAIN

Approx Size12,800 acres (20 sq mi)
Miles Of Trail50
Climate TypeForest
Elevation5200 to 7400 ft.
Trail MaintenanceMarked, Not Rated, Lightly Maintained
Loose DirtThis trail has mostly loose dirt.Mostly
Hard PackThe trail has some hard pack terrain.Some
SandThis trail has little sandy areas.Little
MudThe trail has little mud after it rains.Little
DustThe trail has little dust on typical days.Little
RocksThis trail has little rocks.Little
TreesThe trail has many trees.Many
Steep HillsThis trail has some steep hills.Some
Water CrossingsThe trail has few water crossings.Few
Small JumpsThis trail has few small jumps.Few
Large JumpsThis trail has no large jumps.None
BermsThe trail has many berms.Many
Sand/Gravel PitsThis national forest has no sand or gravel pits.None
Single TrackThis national forest has many single track trails.Many
RoadsThis national forest has some roads.Some
IntersectionsThis trail has many intersections.Many
Rider TrafficThe national forest has some rider traffic on typical days.Some
ShadeThis national forest has many shaded areas.Many
Ranges/GunfireThis national forest has few shooting ranges or gunfire.Few
HazardsThis trail has few hazards.Few(hazards not marked)
Easy Terrain NoviceThis trail has mostly beginner terrain.Mostly
Moderate Terrain AmateurThis trail has some intermediate level terrain.Some
Difficult Terrain ExpertThis trail has little expert terrain.Little

TYPE OF AREA

AreaMotorized Trails
LandNational Forest

KEY SERVICES

Gasoline Gasoline20-30 Miles (N)Hansen
Diesel Diesel20-30 Miles (N)Hansen
Potable Water Water1-5 Miles (N)Steer Basin Campground
RV Hookups RV Hookup5-20 Miles (NW)Nat-Soo-Pah Hot Springs (208) 655-4337
RV Dump Station RV Disposal5-20 Miles (NW)Nat-Soo-Pah Hot Springs (208) 655-4337
Primitive Camping Campground1-5 Miles (N)Steer Basin Campground
Convenience Store Conv Store20-30 Miles (N)Hansen Market (208) 423-5547

FEES & PASSES

Parking(None)
Entry(None)
Riding(None)
Camping(None)
CommentBear Gulch, Bostetter and Father and Sons Campgrounds are free. Porcupine Springs is $14/night, Lower and Upper Penstemon Campgrounds are $8/night.

RATINGS

Prosfree, miles of designated trails, cool single track, lots of free camping, nice swimming holes
Conspoor cell reception
Our RatingRatingExcellent
Recommended Stay1 Week
Comments(Scroll Down For Rider Reviews & Comments)

DRIVING DIRECTIONS

Nearest CityHansen, ID
AddressRock Creek Road, Hansen, ID 83334
Go Back To Idaho List
Street Map
Trail MapGo To Trail Map
From: Twin Falls, ID
For Harrington Fork Picnic Area (single track only):
1) Take Hwy 30 East toward Hansen
2) Turn right (south) onto Rock Creek Road, continue about 17 miles
3) Trailhead will be on your left (east).

For Third Fork Trailhead (single track only):
1) Continue south past Harrington Fork Picnic Area about 4 miles
2) Trailhead will be on your left (south).

For Porcupine Springs Campground:
1) Continue south on Rock Creek Road past Third Fork Trailhead about 21 miles
2) Campground entrance is on the right.

From Jackpot, NV:
For Bear Gulch Campground
1) Take Hwy 93 North about 19 miles
2) Turn right (east) onto Shoshone Basin Road, continue 4.8 miles
3) Turn right (south) onto Magic Hot Springs Road, continue about 2.5 miles
4) Veer left to stay on Shoshone Basin Road, continue about 4 miles
5) Turn left (north) onto Magic Mountain Road, continue about 3 miles
6) Bear Gulch Campground entrance is on the left (north).

OFFICIAL CONTACTS

Contact InfoSawtooth National Forest - Minidoka Ranger District
3650 South Overland Avenue
Burley, ID 83318-3242
(208) 678-0430
mailroom_r4_sawtooth@fs.fed.us
www.fs.usda.gov
Contact InfoIdaho Parks And Recreation
5657 E. Warm Springs Ave
Boise, ID 83716
(208) 334-4197
reghelpline@idpr.idaho.gov
idahostateparks.reserveamerica.com
CommentIdaho OHV Sticker Info

RIDER COMMENTS & REVIEWS

South Hills Trail Photo

South Hills Trail

This large trail system has a wide variety of trails for all riders and skill levels. This single track trail can be accessed from the Harrington Fork Staging Area off Rock Creek Road.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of picnic area surrounded by rock wall and grassy trees.

This is one of the unique picnic areas at Harrington Fork. There is no fee charged to park or use the picnic sites but this particular area is open for day use only.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of narrow ATV trail winding through an aspen tree forest.

The South Hills is a must visit for dirt bike riders and ATVs too. Some wider trails like this ensure that a good time is guaranteed for all.

South Hills Trail Photo

Polaris UTV going down trail surrounded by various pine and aspen trees.

Bear Gulch Campground offers direct offroad access to the surrounding trail system and is a good staging area for ATVs and UTVs. The campground offers eight sites that are big rig friendly.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of single track motorcycle trail with wooded bridge crossing.

The single track trail from Harrington Fork day use area is nicely maintained and intended for motorcycles only.

South Hills Trail Photo

Shallow creek surrounded by aspen trees and thick vegetation.

About a mile north of Harrington Fork Staging Area on the west side of Rock Creek Road are some secluded campsites along the shallow creek. There is no direct trail access but you can camp and relax here. It is a short haul to multiple trailheads.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of single track motorcycle trail winding through various vegetation.

The Harrington Fork trail for motorcycles is very scenic as it cuts through the surrounding hills.

South Hills Trail Photo

View of Harrington Fork Staging Area with restroom in the background.

At Harrington Fork there is a paved parking area and a restroom. From there you can access the single track motorcycle trail or choose from one of several very unique picnic sites. There is no camping here, day use only.

South Hills Trail Photo

Polaris UTV with a driver and passenger parked alongside the trail.

It's not all knarly goat trails. There is also plenty of terrain for just cruising.

South Hills Trail Photo

Red UTV riding on hardpacked Forest Service Road.

The wider UTVs are permitted on the massive loops of designated Forest Service roads.

South Hills Trail Photo

Panoramic view of single track motorcycle trail surrounded by sage brush with rock boulders and aspen forest in the foreground.

The single track on Harrington Fork trail quickly breaks out of the aspen forest and into some high desert scenery. You can put the earbuds in and find your flow on this route.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of rolling hills with scattered pine trees.

One of panoramic views from the peak at South Hills. This photo really doesn't do it justice.

Advertisement

South Hills Trail Photo

Single track motorcycle trail surrounded by various sage brush, green grass with rolling hills in the background.

This particular trail can be accessed from the Third Fork Staging Area which is a basic unpaved lot. The initial trail may be a little rocky at the start but it's a good one and you can always connect to other trails so just enjoy the fantastic views.

South Hills Trail Photo

View of cattle gate with signage.

Be sure to pay attention to any signage and close any cattle gates.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of single track motorcycle surrounded by green grass and various bushes with large rock boulders in the background.

A rock formation near the start of Harrington Fork trail.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of grassy meadow with shallow creek running though taken from the trail.

Some single track through the grassy meadows.

South Hills Trail Photo

Narrow single track motorcycle trail surrounded by various vegetation and winding by rock croppings.

South Hills Trail Photo

View of secluded picnic sites with mature shade trees surrounded by rock croppings.

One of many picnic sites at Harrington Fork. Each has it's own unique setup, and some sites even border the shallow creek. There is no fee but unfortunately this area is only open during daylight hours.

Advertisement

South Hills Trail Photo

South Hills Trail

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of single track motorcycle trail surrounded by various vegetation and sage brush.

Much of the Harrington Fork trail is smooth with some nice berms and good twisty flow.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic single track motorcycle trail winding through an aspen tree forest with large rock boulders on the hillside.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of hiking trail with signage and trail map.

The Thompson Creek Trail is one of the few designated hiking trails in the area. But it is something the whole family can enjoy.

South Hills Trail Photo

South Hills Trail

The Harington Fork Staging Area is a paved loop with some pleasant picnic areas and a rustic looking restroom. This is a favorite for dirt bikes to park and access some single track, then haul a short way back to the campsites on the creek.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of grassy meadow surrounded by aspen and pine trees with shallow creek in the background.

This grassy meadow is located off Magic Mountain Road before Bear Gulch Campground. This area on both sides of the road is open for non-motorized use only but there are places like this where you can hike to a pleasant shallow creek.

Advertisement

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of Shoshone Creek surrounded by various bushes and pine trees.

The Shoshone Creek hugs the southern part of the trail system.

South Hills Trail Photo

Polaris UTV parked near campsite with picnic table.

The Bear Gulch Campground has a wide loop that makes it easy to pick a campsite. The campground is very scenic and all sites come with a picnic table and BBQ ring.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of campground main entrance.

This is the main entrance view of Bear Gulch Campground, which offers eight campsites that can accommodate large trailers. Each campsite comes with a picnic table, BBQ grill and some beautiful views of the South Hills.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic photo of two picnic tables and fire ring surrounded by grassy parking, pine and aspen trees.

One of the campsites at Bear Gulch Campground.

South Hills Trail Photo

Father and son on dirt bikes heading into camp.

This trail head north from the Bear Gulch Campground is popular for ATVs and UTVs 50 inches or less. As you continue, the trail remains wide but gets more twisty, making it worthwile on a dirt bike too.

South Hills Trail Photo

South Hills Trail

Some single track that goes past the restroom at Harrington Fork . The trail remains narrow and twisty throughout with some good elevation changes.

Advertisement

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of ATV trail surrounded by aspen and pine trees.

The Bear Gulch Trail is surrounded by mostly aspen and pine trees with various bushes. The further you continue the more twisty and narrow it gets, but is open and passable for 50 inch wide vehicles.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of narrow ATV trail winding through an aspen tree forest.

Another piece of the Bear Gulch Trail.

South Hills Trail Photo

South Hills Trail

A view of Bear Gulch Campground from the trail. Each site is roomy and has grassy parking and some fantastic views of the surrounding hills.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of Shoshone Creek.

Crossing Shoshone Creek on one of the main roads.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of double track ATV trail surrounded by sage brush and juniper trees.

One of the side trails located on the western side of the South Hills.

South Hills Trail Photo

Yellow Can-Am 1000 with winch attached to front bumper parked alongside the ATV trail.

ATVs and UTVs will have a blast exploring this large trail system in southern Idaho.

Advertisement

South Hills Trail Photo

Single track motorcycle trail with loose chunk rock surrounded by sage brush.

Another view of the Third Fork motorcycle trail. Expect to encounter some loose chunk rock the further you venture out.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic view of narrow ATV trail winding through an dense aspen tree forest.

The Bear Gulch Trail is narrow and twisty with some gradual elevation changes. The best time to visit is spring and fall.

South Hills Trail Photo

Small patch of pine trees surrounded by rolling hills and sage brush.

As you head west off Hwy 93 toward the South Hils, the vegetation starts out as typical high desert but gradually gets greener.

South Hills Trail Photo

Red UTV riding on hardpacked Forest Service Road.

Much of the trail system is limited to machines that are 50 inches wide or less. But wider machines can still explore the vast area by staying on the many designated Forest Service roads.

South Hills Trail Photo

Scenic photo of paved highway surrounded by various green trees and rugged canyons in the background.

Rock Creek Road is the paved highway that runs north and south from Twin Falls. You can use this road to access the eastern trails and staging areas like Harrington Fork.

© 2021 Misirena Digital, LLC Home  |   ATV Trails  |   Articles  |   Calendar  |   Support Center  |   Good Stuff