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Hell's Half Acre, Idaho Falls

3.5
#6 of 7 in Things to do in Idaho Falls
Hell's Half Acre Lava Field is a basaltic lava plain located on the Snake River Plain of Idaho in the United States. It is the easternmost of the basaltic lava fields on the Snake River Plain, located about west of Idaho Falls, Idaho and north of Pocatello, Idaho. In 1976, the National Park Service designated the northwestern portion of the site a National Natural Landmark. In 1986, the Bureau of Land Management recommended that of the site, located just southeast of the National Natural Landmark, to be a wilderness study area.Description of the siteThe Hell's Half Acre lava plain is located in Bingham and Bonneville counties in the state of Idaho. The site is about 150mi2 in size. The area where a former lava lake existed is marked by a 875yd long by 328yd wide depression near the summit of the lava field. Ten circular pits and two large lava tubes are also located near the summit. Two major lava flows, each about long by wide, extend from the main lava field to the south and southwest. These two lava flows surround "Morgans Pasture," a kipuka (or older geologic feature which was not covered by lava). More recently, scientists studying aerial photographs of the site discovered a 328yd long eruptive fissure partly buried under lava flows just from the northwest boundary of the lava field. This and other features of the site indicate that the fissure vent itself may be long.
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Hell's Half Acre Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.0
87 reviews
Google
2.8
TripAdvisor
  • This is a great leg stretcher if traveling or destination if in the area. Super paved walking trail.....all weather surface. Nice stations with interpretive signs. Great place to study extreme flora a...  more »
  • Hiking across a lava field is not for everyone, especially not for the tender footed. It’s a cool sight to see, but the novelty wears off fast. While the trail is flat and easy, the terrain itself is ...  more »
  • This well-developed 3/4 mile trail through a lava field is a convenient and worthwhile stop if you are travelling south on Hwy. I15 through Idaho. The landscape is so unique and the interpretive signs...  more »
Google
  • Very cool geological site. This is the wrong site though. The right site I rated 5 stars. Find the other one to get driving directions. Google does show it in the wrong place. You come up on unexpectedly right along I-15 heading south out of Idaho Falls. It just looks like a rest stop. The interstate landscape gets very interesting prior to getting there, but you would totally miss it if you were driving in the dark. Mile marker 101.
  • Park at Lava Hiking Trail parking lot on hwy 20. There is a 1.5 mile loop and a long trail to the volcano. Not exactly an easy hike. There are lots of cracks in the earth you need to jump over, and the trail is hard to see
  • DON'T FOLLOW GOOGLE MAPS, IT TAKES YOU TO THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE ON A DIRT ROAD.

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