Idaho Trips – Getting Here

Travel & Lodging for Middle Fork & Main Salmon


Middle Fork Salmon River ~ Travel to Stanley, Idaho

Starting in 2023 this trip begins in Stanley, Idaho and ends in Salmon, Idaho. You either need to shuttle your vehicle from Stanley to Salmon (~$150) or fly from Salmon to Boise (~$250/person) at the end of the trip.

There is commercial air service to Boise, Idaho. Then you have 3 options to get to Stanley.

  • Rent a car and drive (131 miles or 3 hours)
  • Shuttle Service with Caldwell Transportation (131 miles or 3 hours)
  • Fly (45 minutes) with a small Cessna airplane

Drive: Rental cars – Budget, Payless, Alamo, Hertz, Avis. Costs around $300/week.
Shuttle: Caldwell Transportation– 800-727-9925- departs at 4 pm from Boise airport and 7 am from Stanley. Reservation must be made 48 hours in advance. The cost is $80/one way or $155 roundtrip.
Fly: Sawtooth Flying Services– 800-798-6105 or 208-342-7888. ~$300 Boise/Stanley per person roundtrip.

Sun Valley Option: Another option is flying into Sun Valley (Hailey Airport) and taking a taxi (~$150/van one-way) to Stanley, which is ~1 ½ hours north. It costs more to fly to Hailey than Boise but is more convenient. WR Taxi in Hailey- 208-788-TAXI.


Lodging is needed before and after your trip.
We have 14 rooms reserved under “Middle Fork River Expeditions” at the Mountain Village Lodge (800) 843-5475 for the evening before your trip and on day 6 of your trip. Please call them right away after booking your trip as they release the room block 14 days before the date. We also recommend the Sawtooth Hotel at 208-721-2459.
Call them directly after you decide on a trip date.


Plan to arrive in Stanley, Idaho by early evening the day before your trip for our 7:30 pm meeting at the MFRE warehouse, located ¼ mile west on Hwy 21 from Mountain Village on the left hand side of the street, between the Triangle C Ranch and the Meadow Creek Spa. There are three wooden oars with MFRE on them at the driveway entrance. We will get acquainted and answer questions, and have a short orientation to show you how to pack the waterproof bags (one large for sleeping kit and camp clothes and one small one for on-river gear) we provide for your personal gear.

After The Trip

You will need to arrange to either have your car shuttled to Salmon or to fly from Salmon.

We arrive at the take-out around 10am on Day 6. We depart for Salmon by 11am and arrive by 1-2pm. We have guests make a sack lunch this morning to have with them along the way. We will first stop at North Fork, Idaho after 1.5 hours and drop guests to their cars that are headed to Montana. We will continue on for 30 minutes to Salmon and stop at the Stagecoach Inn to drop people at their cars. Contact the Stagecoach Inn (208-756-2919) direct for rooms for this night.

Our last stop will be the Salmon Airport for guests with flights out to Boise. Extra luggage will either stay in your vehicle which is shuttled, or if you are flying to Stanley- your extra luggage
can be placed in our truck that meets us at the take-out.

Car Shuttle: from the Mountain Village Resort overflow parking lot in Stanley (they charge $5/day to keep your vehicle there- do for 2 days as it can take a couple days for the shuttle company to pick up) to Stagecoach Inn Parking lot please arrange with River Shuttles at

Flights: Please arrange your flight to depart Salmon at 3pm and do not make your flights out of Boise homeward before 6pm. To arrange a flight from Salmon to Boise or Salmon to Stanley contact Sawtooth Flying Service at 208-634-7774 or Gem Air at 208-756-7382.

Main Stem of the Salmon River ~ Travel to Salmon, Idaho

Travel to Salmon, Idaho

Guests are responsible for their travel arrangements to Salmon. There are two transportation options to choose from, driving or flying. There is commercial air service to Boise, Idaho or Missoula, Montana. Then rent a car and drive to Salmon (5 hours from Boise or 2 hours from Missoula) or fly in a small 5 or 9 seater airplane with Sawtooth Flying Service (800-798-6105).

  • If you are driving to Salmon, you can drive right to Salmon, Idaho either by personal car or rental car from Boise or Missoula airports. Please arrange with River Shuttles (208-756-4188) to shuttle your vehicle from the Stagecoach Inn in Salmon to Carey Creek, which is the take-out for the river. The cost is ~$400/car and $50 gas deposit. Please make the reservation for this immediately after booking your trip to be sure they have enough drivers to do your shuttle. Upon your arrival at the Stagecoach Inn, there is a desk with paperwork to fill out and an envelope to put your keys in which is locked in a box for River Shuttles to pick up. Please be sure you bring 2 sets of car keys, one to leave with the shuttle company and one to bring with you on the river. If you have only one key, you must state on your paperwork you want the key left on the tire outside the car otherwise they will assume you have an extra key and lock the keys in the car.
  • If you are flying to Salmon, you can fly into Boise, Idaho, and then take the flight (approximately 1 hour and $220) directly to Salmon, Idaho the day before your trip begins. You can contact Sawtooth Flying Service (800) 798-6105) to reserve your flight. These are small 5 and 9 seater aircraft and it is a spectacular flight. When you arrive in Salmon, the Stagecoach Inn will pick you up at the airport and drive you to the hotel. If you need assistance with your travel arrangements, please ask MFRE.

*Please note we will provide transportation from Salmon to the river put-in point on Day 1.


Please secure your own lodging for the night before your trip. We will meet at the Stagecoach Inn (208-756-2919) at 7:30 pm the night before your trip begins. The best rooms are on the river side of the hotel and a little more expensive but well worth it.

At the end of the trip, the Super 8 in McCall (208) 634-4637 has clean rooms, or the Hotel McCall (866-800-1183) is a more expensive and very nice hotel. For Boise, we recommend the Best Western Vista Inn (800) 727-5006) which is right next to the airport and has a shuttle service. There is also a nice restaurant adjacent to the hotel for dinner. Please call them directly after you have signed up for the trip.

After The Trip

We will arrive at the take-out point at Carey Creek at approximately 10 am on Day 6.

If driving, your car will be waiting for you and you can be on your way.

We provide transportation (2 hours) from Carey Creek to McCall, Idaho, arriving by 2-3 pm for flights (~$200) with Sawtooth Flying Service (800-798-6105) back to Boise or Salmon, arriving by 3-4 pm. If you plan on flying out of Boise this day please book after 6:30 pm. We recommend you stay the night in Boise and fly out the next day to avoid complications in flight connections after the trip.  We recommend the Best Western Vista Inn (800) 727-5006) which is right next to the airport and has a shuttle service. There is also a nice restaurant/brewpub adjacent to the hotel for dinner.

Frequently asked questions Middle Fork Salmon River are easy to answer.  Most Frequently asked questions Middle Fork Salmon River can be found by reading the detailed itinerary first.  If you still have questions about logistics, give us a call or visit the Frequently asked questions Middle Fork Salmon River hyperlink at the top of the page.  If you don’t get your answer in the Frequently asked questions Middle Fork Salmon River section please give us a call!

We hope to see you this summer on the Middle Fork of the Salmon River or the Main Salmon River in Idaho.