Category Archives: Pocatello Attractions

Hiking and Bike Trails

Hiking and Bike Trails in Pocatello, Idaho

City Creek Management Area

The Hiking and Bike Trails in Pocatello, Idaho, whether on foot, horseback, mountain bike or off road vehicle, provide the outdoor enthusiast approximately 50 miles of exceptional hiking and riding trails within minutes of home. The City Creek Management Area, (CCMA) is within the city limits of Pocatello on the west bench. Comprised of approximately 3,000 acres the CCMA has 55+ trails. The longest trail is the 5.38 mile City Creek/Kinport Road trail and the shortest is the .39 mile Lichen trail. Terrain ranges from mild jeep roads to techie singletrack, through sage and cedar. Trail difficulty starts at novice and goes up to expert.
Pocatello.net City Creek Trail System

The City Creek Management Area Map shows the major trails and more detailed information.

CCMA Trail Map Brochure (PDF)

To the South the City Creek trail system is interconnected with the Gibson Jack and Mink Creek areas providing additional multi-use trail systems on BLM and Forest Service lands within the Bannock Range.

There are also several multi-use trails and connections along the east side of the City that lead into the Portneuf Range.

Southeast Idaho Hiking and Bike Trails

Pocatello.net Pocatello Trails

 

Scenic riding in the Gibson Jack and West Fork Mink Creek areas. Located near Pocatello. This is a loop trail. Strenuous to begin with on the Gibson Jack singletrack but moderate thereafter. Technical difficulty: Easy overall. A few rocky, technical sections rate moderate.

The Valve House Loop on the South Fork of Mink Creek. Located 15 miles southeast of Pocatello.Gorgeous tour of the South Fork Mink and Valve House draws, with splendid views of Scout Mountain off in the distance. Skill Level: Moderate with several strenuous interludes. Technical difficulty: Easy. Nearly all the singletrack on this ride is sweet and buffed. A few rough spots rate moderate.

Dan’s Potpourri. Located 15 miles southeast of Pocatello. Moderate with several strenuous interludes. Technical difficulty: Easy. Nearly all the singletrack on this ride is sweet and buffed. A few rough spots rate moderate.

Three hiking trails southeast of Pocatello:

  • Hiking alt tag
    West Fork of Mink Creek
    Skill Level: Moderately easy for the 6-mile hike; moderate for the 8-mile hike, Length: 8 miles, Duration: Day hike
    A pretty and popular area, ungrazed by livestock and closed to motorized vehicles.
  • Hiking alt tag
    Deep Creek Crest
    Skill Level: Moderate cross-country due to elevation gain and loss and some small cliffs., Length: 5 miles, Duration: Day hike
    Easy access to the crest of a southern Idaho Great Basin mountain range. Fine views.
  • Hiking alt tag
    Scout Mountain – East Fork of Mink Creek
    Skill Level: Easy, Length: 4 miles, Duration: Either a day hike or overnight.
    Pleasant woodland trail leading to good views of Arbon Valley and to an old beaver pond.

Sara W Ifft Grizzly Exhibit

Sara W Ifft Grizzly Exhibit

Sara W Ifft Grizzly Exhibit

The Pocatello zoo began in 1932 with a donation of a female rhesus monkey named Josephine and a  raccoon caught by John Marshall. The two were housed in wire pens at a local trailer park and kept in John’s garage in the winter. Soon after, the mayor of Pocatello, C. Ben Ross, became the Governor of Idaho and appropriated funds for the purchase of land for a park in Pocatello. William Raymond, grandfather of John Marshall, was the superintendent of the Park Department. Raymond and the City Council selected an area south of Pocatello covered with sagebrush and bordered with a natural lava rock cliff. This made an ideal setting for the zoo and a city park. The park was named Ross Park after the governor C. Ben Ross.

For eleven years William Raymond and grandson, John Marshall, continued to build numerous pens for the park until Raymond’s death. A city park on the west side was named in his honor and is known today as Raymond Park.

During those eleven years the first pen built was a monkey house, followed by four pens for bobcat, badger, coyote and raccoon. The lava rock formations made a natural location for a bear pit. The first occupant was called Jigs, an orphan from the Yellowstone Park area. John cared for the cub bear, a pair of deer, three bobcats and four coyote cubs until they could be transferred to the zoo. John and his grandfather added a silver-tipped badger they caught up Pocatello Creek and a coyote den they dug up near the American Falls Reservoir.

The Pocatello Zoo became notorious in 1978 with the addition of a three year old grizzly bear named Charlie. He came from Alaska and was believed to have been an orphaned cub. His gentle nature and amiable ways captured the admiration of both local residents and out of town visitors for over 30 years.

In 1991 Charlie gained a companion, Stripes. Stripes, a two year old female grizzly, came from a zoo in Columbus, Ohio where she was born in captivity. They were companions for 18 years until the passing of Charlie in 2009. Arthritis and a declining appetite led to the passing of Charlie in September, 2009 at the age of 34. His ashes are interred in the zoo’s world-class Sara W. Ifft Grizzly Bear Exhibit located on the bluff above Charlies den.

With the passing of Charlie, Stripes was lonely and began pacing her enclosure. Her loneliness was alleviated in 2014 with the arrival of Shoni. As a young grizzly in the Shoshone National Forest, Shoni  harassed hunters and tourists and was trapped near the Pahaska Tepee Resort outside of Cody, Wyoming.

Sara W Ifft Grizzly Exhibit added to the Pocatello Zoo

A world-class grizzly bear exhibit, The Sara W. Ifft Grizzly Bear Exhibit, was opened to the public on July 3, 2012 and became the new home for Stripes and Shoni. The natural half-acre exhibit has ideal amenities  for a grizzly bear. With the backdrop of Scout Mountain the exhibit has beautiful trees, open space, a recirculating stream with a pond for cooling off and live trout and bass, enhanced with a covered beach. Visitors enjoy the viewing gallery which provides observation of the grizzly bears roaming and splashing in the water. The glass enclosure safely puts the visitor within inches of the bears.

With the housing of numerous orphaned or injured animals from the region who would have died in the wild, the Pocatello Zoo, also known as the Ross Park Zoo, was re-named as Zoo Idaho in 2016.

Other Attractions

Museum of Clean

Pocatello.net Museum of Clean
The Museum of Clean in Pocatello, Idaho has drawn national exposure, primarily through early Associated Press and CBS coverage which sparked an interest and ignited a curiosity as to “What kind of a museum is a Museum of Clean?”

Notable publications and websites have written about it and many have visited it and have aptly described what the Museum of Clean is.

One such visitor was Claire Martin in a Special to the Denver Post in which she quotes the founder, Don Aslett, “We’re selling the value of clean here, not telling people how to clean.”

Pocatello.net Museum of Clean Vintage Vacuums

Steve Hartman of CBS News headlines his article and video “A museum devoted to…cleaning.”

The website TripAdvisor ranks it #1 of 21 things to do in Pocatello.

The reviews in Yelp relate the experiences of visitors from California, Washington, Oregon, Georgia, South Dakota and Illinois. These comments give you a good description of their experiences and what the museum has and is.

The website Atlas Obscura quotes the museum’s Facebook page –“Clean will solve most of our personal problems, hence most of the world’s problems. Clean creates harmony, peace safety and security. Clean speaks with a clear voice that all is well and in control.”

Read the article in Roadside America.

The Museum of Clean is pure clean fun for all ages. Many of the museum exhibits are created for hands-on kid fun. The giant Ark, Windmill and Kids Planet greets visitors young and old as they enter the museum.

Visit Idaho lists ten reasons you should visit the Museum of Clean.

Idaho Power has posted a video on YouTube explaining  their Clean Green rating for energy, power and lighting efficiency for the building that houses the museum.

 

 

The above links illustrate the diversity of interest in the Museum of Clean and an insight into what the museum is and what is in it.

Pocatello.net Museum of Clean

The museum’s history is best told by Don Aslett himself. He begins with:

“My mother told us the reason she married our dad was because he was always so clean. Our home, our clothes, our food, and our yard were always fresh and in top shape. There seemed to be some charm in taking care of things that made life better. 

When I was eighteen and on my own, I put an ad in the Idaho State Journal newspaper; Don Aslett Pro-Cleaner! Calls came in, and Varsity Contractors was eventually founded. I kept a record of my adventures in cleaning, and soon wrote books about it and gave talks about it. I loved cleaning!”

Read the full History by Don Aslett

Other Attractions

 

 

 

The Stephens Performing Arts Center brings you music, dance, theater and more

The Stephens Performing Arts Center brings you music, dance, theater and more was built primarily with the generous support of hundreds of private donors, the 123,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art complex debuted in October 2004. It crowns a Pocatello hilltop that offers vistas as inspiring as the artists who perform here.

The Stephens Performing Arts Center brings you music, dance, theater and more

The Stephens Performing Arts Center brings you music, dance, theater and more, located on Bartz Way on the Idaho State University campus in Pocatello, Idaho, has been funded by an initial gift of $10 million from Mrs. Thelma E. Stephens. The generous support of hundreds of private donors followed to enable the beginning of construction of the 123,000 square foot, state-of-the-art complex on June 10th, 2002. The $34 million dollar facility had its debut in October, 2004.

The first performance in the Stephens Center was “Man of LaMancha,” in October 2004 in the Beverly B. Bistline Theatre. A gala evening featuring a diverse range of musical talent inaugurated the Joseph C. and Cheryl H. Jensen Grand Concert Hall on April 1, 2005. Mrs. Stephens died on Sept. 15, 2006, at age 98.
Today, musicians, actors and other performers from around the world regularly grace the center’s stages.
The center’s most significant performance venues, promenades and other spaces are named for the largest donors to the center. Seats in each performance venue bear the names of hundreds of additional donors.
More names are continually being added through donations managed by the ISU Foundation. Each gift help to assure that the facility is operated and maintained in keeping with the spirit with which it was built.
The L.E. and Thelma E. Stephens Performing Arts Center, unique in the Intermountain West and Pacific Northwest in many ways, is a living legacy that will enrich the cultural life of southeastern Idaho for decades to come.
The performance venues include:
• Joseph C. and Cheryl H. Jensen Grand Concert Hall, 13,890 sq. ft.; 1,200 seats.
• Beverly B. Bistline Thrust Theatre: 8,212 sq. ft.; about 450 seats.
• James E. and Beverly Rogers Black Box Theatre: 3,400 sq. ft.; upwards of 227 seats, depending on how they are arranged.
• Barbara J. Marshall Rotunda.

The Stephens Performing Arts Center brings you music, dance, theater and more

 

The Joseph C. and Cheryl H. Jensen Grand Concert Hall

More information about the Stephens Performing Arts Center
Other Attractions

Kizuna Japanese Garden at the Pocatello Regional Airport

Kizuna Japanese Garden at the Pocatello Regional Airport

Kizuna Japanese Garden at the Pocatello Regional Airport

The Kizuna Garden located in front of the terminal at Pocatello Regional Airport links Pocatello with her Sister City, Iwamizawa, Japan. The Japanese garden, a public space open to the public, features more than 100 varieties of plants, several hundred feet of pathways, a gazebo with benches, water elements and beautiful stones from the surrounding area. An area has been specifically dedicated to honor the relationship with Iwamizawa. The plants on the immediate left are a moon garden, beautiful roses and iris. The plants throughout the garden were carefully selected by Cindy Marshall, Master gardener and are designed to survive in the challenging climate. In the Iwamizawa portion of the garden is a beautiful three-tiered stone pagoda. Immediately to the right of the pagoda sits a small stone bench and a Japanese Zelkova tree planted in memory of Brad Smith, the Pocatello High School Japanese teacher who inspired many students to learn Japanese and to visit Japan.

The  charitable support of the IFFT Foundation, the Bistline foundation, the Hugh Suenaga and Bill Vaughn families and the City of Pocatello funded the project. A group of volunteers worked for almost two years to bring the garden to life.

The garden is loaded with symbolism, and even the stones are placed in a certain direction for a reason. Four large stones symbolize the four main Japanese islands and are laid out the way they are located. A fifth large stone symbolizes the country’s thousands of other smaller islands. The gazebo has five sides that represent the five elements.

A beautiful photo tour was created by local photographer Craig Worth which depicts the awesome plants, flowers and rocks artfully displayed in a meaningful arrangement. Included in the garden are the male and female stones standing at the entrance which represent Mr. and Mrs. Takasago, Keepers of the Garden. Along the way is the crane and tortoise islands often associated with Jo and Uba. One of the islands sports a larch pine with its swooning branches and symbolizes the crane.

For Further Information about Kizuna Japanese Garden at the Pocatello Regional Airport:
Pocatello Regional Airport