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Arrowleaf balsamroot, the big yellow flowers blooming on hillsides right now, is vibrant from Lydle Gulch near Lucky Peak Dam to the Owyhee Mountains south of Marsing.

If you’re looking to combine mountain biking or hiking with wildflowers, Lydle Gulch is the perfect spot. But, get there fast. The big yellow flowers won’t last long.

Trailheads at Lucky Peak Reservoir are located opposite the Barclay Bay parking lot after crossing Lucky Peak Dam from Highway 21. The Turner Gulch boat ramp parking lot, a little further down the road from Barclay Bay, is also a popular jumping off point for hikers who want to do another trail on distant ridges.

Trails in the Lydle Gulch area provide more than 6 miles of trekking Both Lydle Gulch and Turner Gulch are popular with dog walkers. Dogs need to be leashed in picnic areas but are allowed off leash in all areas south of the main road (opposite the reservoir).

By the way, disc golfers will be surprised to learn that there are two 20-basket courses in the area. What variety in a recreation area.

Getting there: 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.

Have fun at the Lucky Peak Dam recreation sites from disc golf to hiking and wildflower photography.

Pete has been writing about the outdoors in Idaho and the Northwest for decades. Give him a shout at

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