- 103 miles (165 km)
- From Boise, it is an all-day trip.
The Owyhee Uplands Backcountry Byway is 103 miles of gravel andpaved roads which are suitable for passenger cars. This route providesaccess to one of the best remaining examples of the sagebrush-steppeecosystem. Visitors will also enjoy seeing the habitat of more than 180species of birds and mammals such as coyotes, bighorn sheep andbadgers. Scenic geologic formations, composed of volcanic rockdeposited 8-12 million years ago, are also present in this area.
From expanses of sagebrush and wildflowers, to sheer, red-walledriver canyons, the Owyhee Uplands represent what many people believethe real West is all about. Look in the right places, and you'll berewarded with the sight of deer or antelope. In remote areas, cougarand bighorn sheep roam.
You'll pass through hay meadows nestled amongsagebrush-covered hills and the winding course of Jordan Creek. Soon,you're climbing into the mountains, the drive peppered with gnarledstands of juniper woodlands. The Santa Rosa Mountains and JarbidgeMountains in Nevada, and Steens Mountain in Oregon, frame thepicturesque desert. Idaho's Owyhee Mountains rise to the north. Sheerrock monoliths rise from the river's shoreline, and yellow and green mosses and lichens splash color on boulders