Mesa Falls Scenic Byway
National Forest: Caribou-Targhee National Forest
Length: 28.7 mi / 46.2 km
Time to Allow: Allow 1 hour.
Connecting with the Teton Scenic Byway at Ashton, the Mesa Falls Scenic Byway takes you to two of the last undisturbed waterfalls of consequence in the West. Main attractions, the Upper and Lower Mesa Falls are the last major falls in Idaho that have not been used for irrigation or hydroelectric projects. At 110 feet and 85 feet, respectively, they offer equally spectacular views in a beautiful forest setting. The upper waterfall has been developed with paths and viewing areas and is easily accessible to all. At Lower Mesa Falls, the Snake River is squeezed into a gorge that drops 65 feet. The best view is from Grandview Campground and Overlook. The glassy waters froth to mist in an even higher 11-story, 114-foot plunge. Simply awesome!
Beginning in gently rolling farmlands, dipping into a tumultuous river confluence, and traveling over the rim of the nation's largest volcanic caldera, Mesa Falls Scenic Byway takes you through some of southeastern Idaho's most compelling scenery. In addition to enjoying breathtaking vistas along the route, devotees of intermountain recreation find countless activities to indulge their passions on the route's 27 miles. Originally a popular path to Yellowstone National Park, the byway offers plenty of reasons to justify a trip in itself.