2 large waterfalls
Short walk on a paved trail with stairs.
5$ per car. $1 motorcycle or bike, $25 tour bus.
Bring a water bottle if needed. There are stairs but it is very manageable
Late spring, summer, early fall
Open year round
Lots of shade
At Visitor Center
Bring snacks if needed.
Trailhead: 44°11’15.89″N, 111°19’40.40″W
You access the falls from Mesa Falls Scenic Byway. This is a beautiful drive and the whole road take about an hour. You can access it from Ashton or Island Park, Idaho. I usually go from the Island Park side to add some scenic views to my ride home from Yellowstone. This is about a ten minute walk on a paved trail with stairs. It is pretty easy and a fun little nature trail. It is suitable for most kids and most anyone not in a wheelchair. My guess would be that you will lose and regain less than 100 feet of elevation. There are two large waterfalls here and you will park in different signed areas. You will have to pay a small National Forest use fee. The river here begins near Island Park at Big Springs. The first fall if coming from Island Park will be Upper Mesa Falls. Upper is 110 feet high and 200 feet wide. Due to the constant nature of Henry’s Fork the water here flows pretty constant year round making it popular in every season. Even in winter it is a popular stop for snowmobiles. This waterfall is spectacular. Its one of the best you can find anywhere and its located in gorgeous lush narrow canyon with amazing views.
Hike back to your car and about a half mile down the road is the parking for Lower Mesa Falls. This is about a 2 minute walk to the lookout. This waterfall is 85 ft. tall. This one is very popular with kayakers and isn’t as big as the first but still very worth the walk.
As you continue on toward Ashton keep an eye out for wildlife. There are often deer and moose visible from the road.
Toward the end of the road you will be awarded with pretty distant views of the Tetons! It was smoky the day we visited so good photos were hard to come by but you can clearly see Grand Teton, and Mount Moran.
Here is short video of the falls:
This is a great 1 hour side trip if you are in the Island Park or Yellowstone area. Its very pretty and very green. The crowds even in July weren’t overwhelming at all and the shade and mist from the falls make it a fairly cool walk. I recommend it to anyone in the area.