Float the Warm Slough

Float the Warm Slough

posted in: Water | 8

People wait all year long for the weather to warm up enough to be able to float down the river. The Warm Slough is one of the best places to do that, as the water isn’t freezing, and it’s a slow gentle ride without any rapids. If you want, you can park a car at each end of the river (the other end is about a mile down the road from the first inlet, and you’ll know when you’ve arrived, as it loops around), but it’s close enough that you can float down, and then make the 10-minute walk back to the start. The float can take anywhere from forty-five minutes to an hour and a half, depending on the current.

The river floats in a generally straight direction with a few turns, except for the end of the float, which almost makes a “U”. You’ll see a sandy area that you can get out and walk back to the cars.

At times, the water gets shallow enough that you might have to stand up and walk a bit. By mid-summer, the water level is high enough that you shouldn’t have to. When we went, the water was nice and clear. We went to Walmart and bought $3 floaties, and they worked fine. If you’re a little bit higher-class than us, you can spend more, although it’s not necessary.

This area isn’t super developed, but there are a few campsites with bathrooms and fire pits if you want to spend the day there. There’s no fee, as far as I’m aware.



  1. Head West on Main Street, as if you’re driving to “R” Mountain.
  2. From the last stoplight on Main Street, your first turn is 1.1 miles away. Turn right onto 3000 West.
  3. Follow this road straight for 5.1 miles. You’ll pass through three stop signs, and “Hibbard School” on your left side.
  4. Turn left onto 4000 North. There’s a sign that says, “Warm Slough — 2.0 Miles.”
  5. 1.2 miles down the road, you’ll turn left onto a gravel road. There’s another sign that says, “Warm Slough — 1.5 miles.”
  6. No more than 2/10ths of a mile, on the left, you’ll see a turn in. Park and start your float here.

8 Responses

  1. Dave Lessnau

    thank you for info on tubing Warm Slough. I’m going to try it today. Any other places you recommend that have put in a take out spots where we can spot a car if too far to walk back?

  2. patrick jackson

    Just moved to Idaho Falls and was told about this place, took my family for a float July 4th weekend and loved it.

  3. Rebecca P

    I was wondering when the water gets warm enough to swim in. I was planning on going around May 14th. Do you think that will be warm enough?

    • matheson

      I (personally) wouldn’t go until June or July, but I’ve heard of people going as early as April (brrr!). It’s really all dependent on your tolerance for cold water.

  4. do you need to provide your own tube?

    • matheson

      Yes, you will need to bring your own tube or something else to float on. This area is not developed.

  5. Amanda Penrod

    Hi there! Would I be able to use one of the photos above for the Standard Journal?

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