South Central Idaho Virtual Tour
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 • Activities:

»  Fishing
»  Backpacking
»  Swimming
»  Bird Watching
»  Camping
»  Observatory

»  Hiking
»  Boating

»  Interpretive
»  Nature Walks
»  Equestrian Trails
»  Stargazing
»  Wilderness Area
»  Wildlife Viewing
»  Ice Skating




Bruneau Dunes State Park
Located in Bruneau, ID

The dunes at Bruneau Dunes State Park are unique in the Western Hemisphere. Others in the Americas form at the edges of natural basins; these form near the center. They include the largest single-structured sand dune in North America, with a peak 470 feet above the lakes.

The combination of 1) a source of sand; 2) a relatively constant wind activity; and 3) a natural trap have caused sand to collect in this semicircular basin for about 12,000 years. Unlike most dunes, these do not drift far. The prevailing winds blow from the southeast 28 percent of the time and from the northwest 32 percent of the time, keeping the dunes fairly stable. The two prominent dunes cover about 600 acres.

Desert Habitat

The park contains lake, marsh, desert, prairie and dune habitats. Since most desert wildlife is nocturnal, early morning and late evening are the best times for spotting the park’s inhabitants. However, a sharp eye often is rewarded with a daytime glimpse of lizards and rabbits, or raptors such as owls, hawks and eagles. Look for tracks in the sand. There is no hunting in the park—except with cameras and binoculars. Motorized vehicles are not allowed on the dunes.

The Lakes

The small lakes at the foot of the dunes provide an excellent bass and bluegill fishery. Sport fishing from nonmotorized boats, canoes, rubber rafts and float tubes is a popular activity.


Bruneau Dunes has one of the longest camping seasons in Idaho's system. Campers often start coming in March and continue to enjoy the park's warm weather late into the fall. Shade trees and shelters are abundant in the campground. A new group camp area with shelter and 25 sites has been added.


A facility for day-use and overnight camping is available.

For More Information:

(Source: The Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation)