Distance: 0.75 miles
Water: Yes (in rest area)
The Southbound Loop of the Lava Trail System in Hell’s Half Acre is an easy 0.75 mile loop that brings weary drivers over a young volcanic landscape along I-15 in southeastern Idaho. The quick and easy loop makes for a great place to stretch your legs along the interstate after being in the car for too long, and provides a snapshot of a wildly unique environment.
Southbound Loop Trail Description
The loop begins lightly ascending a small hill, where the option to continue on the longer loop, or cut the walk short is quickly reached. The main loop continues to gradually ascend up a small lava hill over a switchback where the highway noise begins to fade. From up on the top of the hill a scenic vista of the mountains lining the eastern horizon can be seen.
The trail will dip through a depression in the ancient lava, and shortly after a quick spur trail provides an opportunity to get a panoramic view from a gazebo-type overlook. Back on the main trail, you’ll pass beautifully rugged gorges and sinkholes as the trail descends back down to the beginning of the loop.
From Idaho Falls, head south on I-15 for 17 miles, taking the North Blackfoot – Southbound Rest Area exit. Look for the trailhead at the northern end of the parking area.