Step into the embrace of the Draper Wood River Preserve, a true gem woven into the fabric of Hailey and the heart of the valley. This isn't just a piece of land; it's a testament to the unwavering connection between people and nature. With every footstep, you're walking on a landscape that embodies the soul of Hailey, a place cherished by both locals and visitors alike. Spanning 124.41 acres, the Preserve's story is one of dedication, spanning over six years and three acquisitions, resulting in the protection of half a mile of the Big Wood River. It's a narrative that speaks volumes about the power of collective commitment to safeguarding the land we love.

What sets this place apart is the intimacy it shares with the community. Here, people experience a bond with the land that usually only blooms through private property ownership. It's a remarkable bond that inspires volunteers to shovel snow off the boardwalk in winter, a small act of love that echoes the profound connection between people and this cherished sanctuary. More than just a patch of nature, the Draper Wood River Preserve is a thriving hub of community life. This haven isn't cordoned off; it's an open invitation to come together, to explore, to learn, and to immerse ourselves in the natural world. Educational excursions find a home here, and research opportunities flourish amidst these serene landscapes.

For those seeking solace, a leisurely walk, or a joyful romp with their four-legged companions, this preserve holds a special place. It's a favorite spot where memories are made, where stories unfold, and where the unity of community and nature paints a heartwarming picture.

So come, experience the magic that is Draper Wood River Preserve. Here, community and nature entwine, and every footstep is a testament to the deep-rooted bond that transforms land into a treasured legacy.


Wood River Land Trust endeavors to create Universal Access trails throughout all public access preserves. Universal Access is defined as a stone aggregate trail that complies with the Outdoor Guidelines:

  • Tread Surface: Clear, firm and stable with a minimum width of 36”  
  • Tread Obstacles: 2” high maximum 
  • Cross Slope: 5% maximum 
  • Running Grade must meet one or more of the following:
    • 5% or less for any distance 
    • Up to 8.33% for 200’ maximum 
    • Up to 10% for 30’ maximum 
    • Up to 12.5% for 10’ maximum 
    • For all running grades above 5%, a resting interval must be provided at both ends of the grade. Resting intervals and passing spaces may overlap 
    • No more than 30% of the total trail length may exceed a running grade of 8.33% 
  •  Passing Spaces: 60” width, provided at least every 1000’ where trail width is less than 60” wide, with a maximum 5% cross slope 
  • Signage must provide the following: 
    • Length of the trail or trail segment
    •  Surface type  
    • Typical and minimum tread width 
    • Typical and maximum running grade 
    • Typical and maximum cross slope  

At Draper Wood River Preserve, there is one ADA parking space by Lion's Park. The trail from the parking lot to the boardwalk is flat, crushed rock.Note: While Wood River Land Trust endeavors to upgrade the majority of existing trails to Universal Access status, not every trail is able to be converted because they are in the floodplain and if they were upgraded to Universal Access status, angular rock would be washed into the river during Spring flooding every year which is not ideal for the health of the river.

This preserve has a passport!


Wildlife Image

Draper Wood River Preserve is home to a variety of wildlife. Keep your eyes open and up and you might get to see ground squirrels, migrating waterfowl, elk, moose, beavers, and more! 


Preservation Image

Nestled within walking distance from town, this pristine sanctuary offers a unique blend of accessibility and untouched wilderness. Unlike riverfront properties that restrict public access, the Preserve is dedicated to preserving the river's accessibility for everyone to enjoy. As a crucial corridor for wildlife migration, the Preserve plays a vital role in safeguarding the diverse ecosystems that call this area home.

The untouched landscapes stand as a testament to our commitment to maintaining the land's authentic essence. With its sweeping views, tranquil river, and thriving biodiversity, the Draper Wood River Preserve stands as a living example of how nature and public use can coexist harmoniously


Recreation Image

Hiking, fishing, birdwatching, biking, and more! Discover the ultimate outdoor playground at the Draper Wood River Preserve – an oasis of excitement and serenity waiting to be explored. Put on your hiking boots or saddle up for a biking escapade, winding through captivating trails that lead you across vibrant meadows, through age-old groves, and alongside the gentle currents of the Big Wood River. Let the enchanting beauty of nature invigorate your senses and uplift your soul.

If the river beckons, cast your fishing line into its bountiful waters. Fishing aficionados will find a haven in the tranquil flow, where every cast is a chance to connect with the aquatic world. Whether you're a seasoned angler or a novice eager to experience the thrill, the Preserve offers a sanctuary for all, fostering an intimate connection with the water's rhythm.

Indulge your passion for birdwatching as the Preserve unveils its avian treasures. Armed with binoculars, uncover a realm of flitting wings and melodious tunes. From majestic raptors gracefully navigating the skies to the colorful symphony of songbirds hidden amidst the foliage, every step unravels a new chapter in the captivating tale of the Preserve's feathered inhabitants. 

Ethical Land Use

We thrive as a community united by a deep respect for both nature and one another. Our shared commitment to preserving this precious landscape is what makes our sanctuary truly exceptional. Here's how we embrace these values in our conduct:

Mindful Pet Ownership

While dogs are welcome companions, kindly clean up after them to protect water quality. Keep your furry friends under voice control, ensuring a peaceful coexistence with both other visitors and the local wildlife.

Warm Gestures

A simple smile and wave can go a long way in fostering a sense of camaraderie. Greeting fellow explorers with kindness creates an atmosphere of unity and appreciation.

Heightened Awareness

As you traverse the trails, stay mindful of your surroundings. By respecting the natural habitat and its inhabitants, we create an environment where both humans and wildlife can thrive in harmony.

Nature's Call

Please note that there are no restroom facilities within the Preserve. Be prepared and plan accordingly for your outdoor adventure.

Respecting Our Home

What We Leave Behind

We believe that by upholding certain restrictions, we ensure the longevity and well-being of our Preserve

No Motorized Vehicles

To preserve the tranquility of our haven, we ask that motorcycles and ATVs remain outside the Preserve.

Preserving Wildlife

Hunting, harassing wildlife, or any activity that disrupts their natural behaviors is strictly prohibited.

Leave No Trace

Overnight camping, fires, and fireworks are not allowed. Let's cherish the untouched beauty of the Preserve for all to enjoy.

Smoke-Free Zone

For the safety of the environment and all visitors, smoking and open flames are not permitted.

Stay on the Path

To protect the delicate ecosystems, please refrain from creating new trails. Stick to designated paths to minimize our impact.

In essence, this Preserve isn't just a place to visit; it's a testament to the bonds we form with the land and with each other. By embracing these practices, we cultivate an atmosphere of harmony, shared responsibility, and a deep appreciation for the wonders that surround us. So join us in nurturing this extraordinary environment, and let's continue to write the story of our Preserve together.

Photo Opportunities


Bow Bridge

The Bow Bridge is the iconic installment that connects two sides of the river to maximize the preserve’s accessibility with a bridge made to look like a Bow and Arrow. If you follow the bridge from the Croy Canyon Boardwalk to the other side, you’ll find the large arrow that also serves as a sundial. This bridge is a lovely place to pause and look out on the Big Wood River.


Heart Rock Tree

The Heart Rock Tree speaks to the love locals have for Draper Wood River Preserve. For years, visitors have found heart-shaped rocks and left them on the Heart Rock Tree as a testament to the depth of love and community the Preserve represents.


Dog Beach

As you follow the trail, you’ll see a little sandy beach area where dogs and people alike brave the temps to take a dip in the Big Wood River.



The Kiosk was installed to mark the naming of Draper Wood River Preserve. It’s a lovely spot along the trail to pause and view trail maps as well as what kind of wildlife you can expect to see.



The Pavilion displays the history of the Preserve. It also serves as a beautiful spot to picnic or host celebrations. Reservations are not required, but they can be made through Wood River Land Trust for parties and events.


Croy Canyon Boardwalk

Created during the restoration of Lion’s Park, this boardwalk makes the marsh accessible to visitors and offers great opportunities for birdwatching or just taking in the scenic view

Future Plans

We are always looking for opportunities to restore the river in any way required. There are also plans for a trail dedication with a bench honoring Priscilla Draper. We will continually restore, conserve, and preserve Draper Wood River Preserve in perpetuity so everyone can enjoy this treasured landscape and river access.

43.5139575980149 -114.319761220936 

Getting There

To get to the Draper Preserve from downtown Hailey, head west out of town on Bullion Street.  Just after you cross the river, turn right into Lions Park. Continue through the large parking lot, past the baseball fields, to the small dirt parking lot by the Draper pavilion.

This is an "Access Yes!" property

Preferred Entrance (Lions Park)


Entrance Option 2 (Aspen Dr)


Entrance Option 3 (Cedar St)