Snake River Trail #1726

Snake River,  courtesy Gary Halvorson, Oregon State Archives.

This trail begins at Dug Bar and follows the Snake River south to its junction Saddle Creek Trail #1776 which enters Hells Canyon Wilderness to the west of the Snake River. The road to Dug Bar is a narrow, winding dirt road and can be slick when wet. The stretch from Cow Creek to Dug Bar is very rugged and not suitable for passenger cars. High clearance vehicles are strongly recommended.

There are many wildflowers along the trail and it is popular for its prime fishing, hiking and packsaddle recreational opportunities. The trail offers excellent wildlife viewing. You may even catch a glimpse of some bighorn sheep that reside in the area. Various large rapids such as Rush Creek and Waterspout can be seen from the Snake River Trail.

Dispersed camping is available along the Snake River. There is a unique section of trail known as the Eagles Nest which has been constructed through a cliff, similar to going through a tunnel except that 1 side remains open. There is a 50 foot drop off to the river on the side that remains open. Spring and fall are the best time to hike the lower elevation trails. Because of the dramatic elevation differences in the Hells Canyon National Recreation Area, weather and temperature conditions can vary greatly, so be prepared for both hot and cold weather conditions, even during the summer months.

There is one location where the trail leaves the Snake River and climbs 3,000 feet in elevation over Englishman Hill. The trail has several sections that have been blasted through rocky bluffs that rise out of the Snake River. One section, the Devils Slide between Temperance Creek and Saddle Creek, has been constructed like a cement staircase in an effort to assist stock and hikers to maintain footings in loose steep rock. Caution should be used in these sections of trail. This trail is recommended for experienced stock animals only. Certain sections of the trail are narrow making it difficult for pack stock. Beware of poison ivy and rattlesnakes that may be along the trail.

This moderate trail can be used year round. Practicing minimum-impact techniques will help preserve wilderness for everyone's enjoyment.

At a Glance

Current Conditions: Current Conditions
Fees: No fee required.
Usage: Heavy
Busiest Season: Fall
Restrictions: Within the Wild and Scenic Snake River corridor open campfires are not allowed within 1/4 of a mile of the Snake River, fire pans are required yearlong. See Hells Canyon Wilderness Regulations.
Closest Towns: Imnaha, OR
Information Center: Wallowa Mountains Office

General Information


Take State Highway #350 from Joseph, OR approximately 30 miles to Imnaha. At the town of Imnaha, turn left onto paved County Road #735, which turns into a steep, narrow dirt road, Forest Road #4260.

Dug Bar is approximately 27 miles from Imnaha. This road is slippery when wet. High clearance vehicles are recommended.


Day Hiking


Horse Riding

Viewing Wildlife

Related Information

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


  Area/Length : 
45.5 miles

  Elevation : 
1005 - 3050