ATV owners in Idaho have likely spent most of the summer hitting trails surrounded by beautiful backcountry with friends and family. For Magic Valley enthusiasts, there are miles and miles of trails to hike two and a half hours north of Twin Falls that also offer a history lesson in 1800s Gem State mining, and the Access to the site is open to the public.
The Mackay Mine Hill Tour is a self-guided ATV ride that takes off-roaders on over 25 miles of trails alongside many abandoned 19th century mine sites. Mackay, which is 135 miles north of Twin Falls, was the site of a copper boom in the late 1800s, and many of the structures built at the time still stand and have been preserved for more than 130 years old.
To make the full trip, about six hours are needed, and don’t forget to pack your lunch and water. There are several great spots to retreat and snack on, as well as capture incredible photographs of these ancient mining relics.
Runners are not allowed to enter mining structures at all. The age of the site makes this incredibly dangerous. Entering the old mine tunnels is also dangerous and prohibited by state law. The Bureau of Land Management oversees this site and may prosecute anyone who violates the law.
There are several different routes that cyclists can take depending on time and difficulty. To view these trail maps, click here.