Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail In Idaho

Here is everything you need to know about the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail:

  • Trail System: National Recreation Trail
  • State: Idaho
  • Length: 3 miles.
  • Type: Hiking
  • Surface: dirt
  • Managed By: Boise Parks and Recreation
  • Permit Required?: No
  • Website:

The Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail, located in Boise, Idaho, holds a significant historical background that dates back to the early 19th century. The area was originally inhabited by the Shoshone-Bannock tribes, who utilized the land for hunting and gathering. They recognized the natural resources and beauty of the region, making it an integral part of their culture and livelihood.

In the mid-1800s, European settlers began to explore and settle in the Boise Valley. The discovery of gold in the nearby Boise Basin attracted a large influx of miners, leading to the establishment of Boise City in 1863. As the city grew, the Hulls Gulch area became a vital resource for timber, providing wood for construction and fuel.

During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the Hulls Gulch area witnessed various logging operations. The timber industry played a crucial role in the economic development of Boise, providing employment opportunities and contributing to the growth of the city. However, the extensive logging activities also had a significant impact on the natural landscape, altering the ecosystem and depleting the forest resources.

Recognizing the importance of preserving the natural beauty and historical significance of the area, efforts were made to protect and restore Hulls Gulch. In the 1970s, the City of Boise acquired the land, designating it as a recreational area. The Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail was established to provide visitors with an opportunity to explore the area’s rich history and diverse ecosystem. Today, the trail serves as a reminder of the region’s past, offering a glimpse into the historical significance of Hulls Gulch and its transformation from a resource extraction site to a cherished recreational destination.

While On The Trail

Access Points

1. Hulls Gulch Nature Trailhead: This is the main access point for the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail. It is located at the end of 8th Street in Boise, Idaho.

2. Lower Hulls Gulch Trailhead: This trailhead is located off Bogus Basin Road, near the intersection with Curling Drive. It provides an alternative access point to the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail.

3. Upper Hulls Gulch Trailhead: Situated further up Bogus Basin Road, this trailhead offers another entry point to the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail. It is located near the intersection with North Mountain Cove Road.

4. Red Cliffs Trailhead: This access point is located along the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail, providing a connection to the Red Cliffs Recreation Area. It is accessible from the Upper Hulls Gulch Trailhead.

5. 8th Street Trailhead: This trailhead is located at the beginning of 8th Street in Boise, Idaho. It serves as an alternative access point to the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail, connecting to it via a short connector trail.

6. Crestline Trailhead: Situated near the intersection of Bogus Basin Road and North Mountain Cove Road, this trailhead provides access to the Crestline Trail, which intersects with the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail.

7. Military Reserve Trailhead: Located off Mountain Cove Road, this trailhead offers access to the Military Reserve Park trail system, which connects to the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail.

8. Camel’s Back Park Trailhead: This trailhead is located within Camel’s Back Park in Boise, Idaho. It provides access to the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail via a connector trail.

These are some of the major access points or trailheads along the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail. There may be additional smaller access points or connectors along the trail as well.

Transportation Available

1. Boise GreenBike – Bike-sharing program with multiple stations around the city.
2. ValleyRide Bus – Public bus service with routes covering Boise and surrounding areas.
3. Uber – On-demand ride-hailing service available in the area.
4. Lyft – Another on-demand ride-hailing service operating in the vicinity.
5. Boise Airport Taxi – Taxi service providing transportation to and from the Boise Airport.
6. Boise Shuttle Service – Shuttle service offering airport transfers and transportation within the city.
7. Boise Electric Bike Rentals – Rental service providing electric bikes for exploring the area.
8. Boise Carriage – Horse-drawn carriage rides for a unique transportation experience.
9. Boise Pedicab – Pedicab service offering eco-friendly transportation in downtown Boise.
10. Boise Trolley Tours – Guided trolley tours showcasing the city’s landmarks and attractions.


The amenities available at the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail may include:

1. Restrooms: There may be restroom facilities available at the trailhead or along the trail for visitors’ convenience.

2. Parking: There should be designated parking areas or parking lots near the trailhead where visitors can park their vehicles.

3. Camping Sites: Depending on the specific regulations and policies of the trail, there may be designated camping sites available for overnight stays. It is advisable to check with the local authorities or trail management for any permits or reservations required.

4. Picnic Areas: There might be designated picnic areas along the trail where visitors can stop and enjoy a meal or snack amidst the natural surroundings.

5. Interpretive Signage: The trail may have interpretive signage or information boards along the route, providing educational and informative content about the local flora, fauna, geology, or history.

6. Trail Maps: Visitors may find trail maps or brochures available at the trailhead, providing information about the different routes, distances, and points of interest along the trail.

7. Benches or Seating: There may be benches or seating areas strategically placed along the trail, allowing visitors to rest, take in the views, or simply enjoy the surroundings.

8. Trash Receptacles: To maintain cleanliness and preserve the natural environment, there should be trash receptacles available at various points along the trail for visitors to dispose of their waste properly.

9. Water Stations: Depending on the length and difficulty of the trail, there may be water stations or fountains available for visitors to refill their water bottles and stay hydrated.

It is important to note that the availability of these amenities may vary, and it is recommended to check with the local authorities, trail management, or visitor centers for the most up-to-date information before visiting the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail.

Nearby Services

1. Lodging:
– Inn at 500 Capitol: Upscale hotel offering luxurious accommodations in downtown Boise.
– Hampton Inn & Suites Boise-Downtown: Comfortable hotel with modern amenities located near the heart of Boise.
– Hyatt Place Boise/Downtown: Contemporary hotel featuring spacious rooms and a rooftop terrace.

2. Food Services:
– Fork: Trendy eatery serving locally sourced American cuisine in a stylish setting.
– Bittercreek Alehouse: Lively brewpub offering a wide selection of craft beers and pub fare.
– Goldy’s Breakfast Bistro: Popular breakfast spot known for its delicious pancakes and omelets.

3. Emergency Services:
– St. Luke’s Boise Medical Center: Acute care hospital providing comprehensive medical services.
– Boise Police Department: Law enforcement agency responsible for maintaining public safety in the area.
– Boise Fire Department Station 4: Fire station equipped to handle emergencies and provide fire protection services.

Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail Difficulty Notes

The Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail offers a moderate difficulty level, making it suitable for hikers of various skill levels. The trail spans approximately 8 miles round trip and features a mix of flat sections, gradual inclines, and some steeper sections. While the trail is well-maintained and clearly marked, hikers should be prepared for uneven terrain and occasional rocky patches. The trail also offers some scenic viewpoints and opportunities to observe wildlife, adding to the overall experience. Overall, the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail provides a satisfying challenge without being overly strenuous, making it a popular choice for outdoor enthusiasts.

Features And Attractions

The Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail is located in Boise, Idaho, and offers a variety of scenic views, historical sites, natural landmarks, and more. Here are some notable points of interest along the trail:

1. Hulls Gulch Reserve: The trail itself is situated within the Hulls Gulch Reserve, a protected area known for its diverse wildlife, plant species, and scenic beauty.

2. Foothills Overlook: This viewpoint provides stunning panoramic views of the Boise Valley, the city skyline, and the surrounding mountains.

3. Shafer Butte: Located in the Boise National Forest, Shafer Butte is a prominent peak visible from the trail. It offers breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape.

4. Old Penitentiary Site: Along the trail, you can find remnants of the Old Idaho Penitentiary, which operated from 1872 to 1973. It now serves as a historical site and museum.

5. Table Rock: A popular landmark in Boise, Table Rock is a large sandstone formation that offers sweeping views of the city and the Boise River.

6. Wildlife Spotting: The Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail is home to various wildlife species, including deer, elk, foxes, and a variety of bird species. Keep an eye out for these animals during your hike.

7. Native Plant Species: The trail is lined with a diverse range of native plant species, including wildflowers, sagebrush, and various types of trees. Take the time to appreciate the natural beauty of these plants.

8. Boise River: The trail follows the Boise River for a portion of its length, providing opportunities for scenic river views and potential wildlife sightings.

9. Interpretive Signs: Throughout the trail, you will find informative signs that provide insights into the area’s history, geology, and ecology. These signs enhance the interpretive experience and offer educational opportunities.

10. Peaceful Atmosphere: One of the highlights of the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail is the peaceful and serene atmosphere it offers. The trail allows visitors to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and immerse themselves in nature.

These are just a few of the many scenic views, historical sites, natural landmarks, and other points of interest along the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail. Exploring the trail will provide you with a deeper appreciation for the natural beauty and rich history of the Boise area.

Usage Guidelines


Seasonal Information

The Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail, located in Boise, Idaho, offers a fantastic outdoor experience for nature enthusiasts and hikers alike. The best times of the year to visit this trail are during the spring and fall seasons. In spring, the trail comes alive with vibrant wildflowers, and the weather is generally pleasant with mild temperatures. Fall, on the other hand, treats visitors to breathtaking foliage as the leaves change color, creating a picturesque landscape. The cooler temperatures during these seasons make hiking more enjoyable, and the trail is less crowded compared to the summer months.

It is important to note that the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail has seasonal closures during the winter months. Due to snowfall and potentially hazardous conditions, the trail is closed from December 1st to March 1st. During this time, it is not recommended to attempt hiking on the trail as it may be inaccessible and unsafe. However, if you are an experienced winter hiker, you can explore the nearby trails that remain open during this period, such as the Lower Hulls Gulch Trail or the Red Cliffs Trail.

To make the most of your visit to the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail, it is advisable to check the weather conditions and trail status before planning your trip. Additionally, it is always a good idea to bring appropriate gear, such as sturdy hiking shoes, water, snacks, and sunscreen, regardless of the season. Whether you choose to visit in the spring or fall, you are sure to be captivated by the natural beauty and tranquility that the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail has to offer.


1. Wheelchair Accessible Parking: Designated parking spaces close to the trailhead with sufficient space for wheelchair users to enter and exit their vehicles.
2. Accessible Trailhead: A level and paved area at the beginning of the trail, allowing easy access for wheelchair users.
3. Paved Pathways: The trail features paved pathways, ensuring a smooth and accessible surface for wheelchair users.
4. Restroom Facilities: Accessible restrooms equipped with grab bars and ample space for wheelchair maneuverability.
5. Interpretive Signage: Informational signs along the trail are designed with large fonts and accessible heights for wheelchair users to read and enjoy.
6. Benches and Rest Areas: Strategically placed benches and rest areas along the trail, providing opportunities for wheelchair users to take breaks and enjoy the surroundings.
7. Handrails and Guardrails: Sturdy handrails and guardrails are installed in areas where the trail may have steep slopes or uneven terrain, ensuring safety for all visitors.
8. Accessible Picnic Areas: Picnic areas with accessible tables and seating options for wheelchair users to enjoy a meal or a break.
9. Trail Surface Maintenance: Regular maintenance of the trail surface to ensure it remains smooth and free from obstacles, making it easier for wheelchair users to navigate.
10. Accessible Water Fountains: Accessible water fountains with lower spouts for wheelchair users to easily access and drink water along the trail.

Safety Information

When visiting the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail, it is important to keep the following safety information in mind:

1. Stay on designated trails: Stick to the marked paths and avoid venturing off-trail. Straying from the designated trails can lead to getting lost or damaging the delicate ecosystem.

2. Carry and drink plenty of water: The trail can be physically demanding, especially during hot weather. Stay hydrated by carrying an adequate amount of water and drinking it regularly throughout your hike.

3. Dress appropriately: Wear comfortable, sturdy shoes suitable for hiking. Dress in layers to accommodate changing weather conditions and protect yourself from sunburn or insect bites. Consider wearing a hat and applying sunscreen.

4. Be aware of wildlife: Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail is home to various wildlife species. Respect their habitat and keep a safe distance. Do not feed or approach any animals you encounter, as they may become aggressive or pose a threat.

5. Inform someone about your plans: Before heading out on the trail, let someone know about your plans, including the estimated duration of your hike. This way, if you encounter any issues or get lost, someone will be aware and able to assist you.

6. Carry a map and/or use a GPS device: Familiarize yourself with the trail map and carry it with you. If possible, use a GPS device or smartphone app to track your location. This will help you stay on the right path and avoid getting lost.

7. Be cautious of steep or slippery areas: Some sections of the trail may be steep or have loose rocks, especially during wet or snowy conditions. Take extra caution while navigating these areas to prevent slips, falls, or injuries.

8. Pack essential supplies: Bring a small first aid kit, insect repellent, and snacks to keep your energy levels up during the hike. It is also advisable to carry a whistle or signaling device in case of emergencies.

9. Respect trail etiquette: Yield to other hikers, especially those going uphill. Keep noise levels to a minimum to preserve the tranquility of the area. Leave no trace by carrying out any trash or waste you generate.

10. Check weather conditions: Before embarking on your hike, check the weather forecast for the area. Avoid hiking during severe weather conditions, such as thunderstorms or extreme heat, as they can pose significant risks.

Remember, safety should always be a priority when enjoying outdoor activities. By following these guidelines, you can have a safe and enjoyable experience on the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail.

Conservation Notes

The Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail, located in Boise, Idaho, is considered to be in a relatively stable conservation status. The trail is situated within the Boise Foothills, an area known for its diverse wildlife and natural beauty. The conservation efforts in this region have been successful in maintaining the integrity of the trail and its surrounding environment.

The Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail is carefully managed to ensure the preservation of its natural resources. The trail is regularly monitored and maintained by local authorities and conservation organizations to prevent any degradation or disturbance to the ecosystem. This includes regular trail maintenance, erosion control measures, and the removal of invasive plant species that could potentially harm the native flora and fauna.

Furthermore, the trail is subject to regulations and guidelines that aim to protect the wildlife and their habitats. Visitors are encouraged to stay on designated paths and refrain from disturbing or feeding the animals. These measures help to minimize human impact on the trail and maintain the delicate balance of the ecosystem.

Overall, the conservation status of the Hulls Gulch Interpretive Trail is considered to be in good condition. The ongoing efforts to preserve and protect the trail and its surrounding environment have been effective in maintaining its natural beauty and ensuring the sustainability of the area for future generations to enjoy.

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