Lucky Peak Dam Recreation Area is the largest and most popular portal to recreation at Lucky Peak Lake. Comprised of Barclay Bay, Turner Gulch and Lydle Gulch, this area hosts the bulk of Lucky Peak Lake visitation and offers many recreational opportunities. Barclay Bay and Turner Gulch are our largest boat launch areas and closest ones to the City of Boise – just 15 minutes away. Lydle Gulch offers many options for hiking, biking, and equestrian enthusiasts with primitive roads connecting to adjacent public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management, Idaho Department of Fish and Game, as well as connecting to the Oregon National Historic Trail. Disc golf enthusiasts will also find two new 20-basket courses under construction here. River access near the Arthur and Mary Hallock Foote House historic site offers opportunities for fishing the river; exploration of the basalt cliffs, canyons and riparian areas south of the river; and is a perfect launch pad for dog walks along the river’s sandy banks in fall.
“While it’s always been oriented to boaters, we’ve been working hard to round-out and improve the options here for everyone – boat or no boat,” says Park Manager, Keith Hyde. “Folks ride the Greenbelt out from town or drive out to picnic, take a quick dip in the lake, hike, mountain bike, run their dog in our off-leash areas, ride horses, bird watch, read a book, or throw a round or two of disc golf. Folks are taking more interest in this area it seems, like some newly discovered area of the Boise Foothills they never knew of before, and they seem to like it. And unless you’re launching a boat and parking your trailer in the lots, it’s free.” Hyde continues, “One of my favorite things to do in this area is to hike up to tee pad 20 on the disc golf Gold Course and just take in the view. You’re way up above, and can see halfway up the lake on the one side and all the way down the river canyon to the Boise skyline on the other. The summer sun sets right into the canyon, and with the lake teaming, everyone mulling around, catching glimpses of kestrels and other wildlife… I think it’s just a neat spot to hike my dogs to, hang out for a while, be quiet, and watch.”
Please consider the following when planning a trip to Lucky Peak Dam Recreation Area:
- There is no entrance fee to Lucky Peak Dam Recreation Area; however, boat launch parking is $5 per day. Fee season is annually May 15 to September 15. Single cars need not pay the launch parking fee and are not allowed to utilize the longer spaces designated for boat and trailer parking. Paddlecraft users without trailers need not pay a launch fee.
- This area is managed by the Corps of Engineers therefore Idaho State Park annual passes are not honored at this location.
- Parking is in designated areas only. Overflow parking and parking for oversized vehicles that do not fit painted stalls is available on designated road shoulders and at the Spillway adjacent to the dam.
- Dogs are to be leashed in picnic areas but are allowed off leash in all areas south of the main road (opposite the lake). Pets are not allowed, nor glass containers, at the Barclay Bay swimming area.
- This area, as all of Lucky Peak Lake, is a “Pack It In – Pack It Out” area. In summer months there are two dumpsters nearby to drop off waste: one at Turner Gulch and one at Barclay Bay.
- There is no potable water in this area.
- Lucky Peak remains in Stage 1 fire restrictions year-round. Ground fires (wood and charcoal) must be kept in Agency-provided grills and attended at all times. Rock rings are prohibited. LPG and other liquid fuel cooking stoves are allowed. Charcoal fires in portable grills are not allowed.
- Cellular phone service is limited at best. A payphone is located near the restroom at Barclay Bay Host Site.
- Lucky Peak Dam Recreation Area is not gated closed at night but is posted a Day Use Only area. Camping is not allowed. Overnight users to boat-in campsites and others on the water may leave vehicles and trailers parked in the launch areas overnight, but land visitors in the area may be asked to leave after daily published Sunset times.
- From the junction of Interstate 84 and Highway 21, travel North on Highway 21 for 6.5 miles to Lucky Peak Dam
- Turn right to drive across Lucky Peak Dam and continue straight for .8 miles to Barclay Bay. Turn right towards Lydle Gulch and Foote Park. Continue straight another .7 miles to Turner Gulch.
- Latitude: 43.520004 Longitude:-116.054642