Hardscrabble Campground

Hardscrabble Campground


Hardscrabble Campground is located approximately 12 miles north of Crouch, Idaho. It is one of 5 campgrounds that lie along the Middle Fork of the Payette River, north of Garden Valley at an elevation of approximately 3,215 feet.

The Middle Fork drainage offers excellent trail opportunities. Fishing and hunting are popular activities as well.


Natural Features:

The campground is situated on the banks of the Middle Fork Payette River among Douglas fir and lodgepole pine trees, which offer partial shade. A few sites offer river views through the dense vegetation on the banks.

A variety of wildlife makes its home in the Middle Fork drainage, including deer, elk and red-tailed hawks.



The Middle Fork Payette River offers good to excellent fishing most of the year. Anglers cast for whitefish and rainbow trout.

Many trails for hiking, mountain biking, horseback and ATV riding can be found in the area. Check on the Boise National Forest map and the Emmett Motor Vehicle Use Map (MVUM) for information about trails and road open to OHV use.  The One Spoon Trail, Rattlesnake Trail and 465 ATV Trail are all in the vicinity of the campground.

In-season big game hunting for deer, elk and bear is a popular activity in the surrounding mountains.

At a Glance

Current Conditions: 2021 Scheduled to open May 7. 2019 - Hardscrabble Campground renovations and remodel were completed. 
Reservations: No reservations are necessary.  This campground is first come, first serve.  This is a very popular area with only 6 sites, don't expect a site to be open.
Fees: This is a fee campground. Fee envelopes and a collection box are provided near the entrance. Please bring cash or check.  Six - sites total.  Extra vehicle fees may apply.
Usage: Light
Closest Towns: Garden Valley, Idaho
Water: Not for drinking
Restroom: Vault
Information Center: Facilities:  The 6 campsites all have a fire ring, grill, picnic table and vault toilet.  Three of the units can accommodate small to medium size RVs up to a length of 30 feet.

General Information


From Boise, Idaho, take State Highway 55 north 35 miles to Banks, Idaho.  At Banks, turn east onto the Banks-Lowman Highway 17 and proceed to Crouch, Idaho.

From Crouch, continue north on Forest Service Road 698 approximately 12 miles to Hardscrabble Campground.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Mountain Biking

There are several trails in the surrounding area.
Difficulty Level: Intermediate

Campground Camping

Total of 6 sites.

River and Stream Fishing

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game manages the river fisheries. Fishing is good to excellent most of the year. Fishing occurs from the riverbanks. Whitefish and rainbow trout are the predominate species.
Difficulty Level: Intermediate

Day Hiking

There are several trails in the surrounding area.
Difficulty Level: Intermediate

Horse Riding

There are several trails in the surrounding area.
Difficulty Level: Intermediate

Big Game Hunting

Hunting for big game in season.
Difficulty Level: Difficult

OHV Camping


Picnic tables are in the surrounding area.

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


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