Official Government Website

Idaho’s public trust lands are the lands submerged below the ordinary high water mark of navigable lakes and rivers. Title to these lands is held in trust and is administered for the public benefit.  IDL manages these lands to provide for their commercial, navigational, recreational and other uses. Part of that management is administering dock/encroachment permits on Idaho lakes and rivers.

Additionally, the IDL administers ownership of public trust lands along navigable rivers by processing land disclaimers and issuing easements and riverbed leases for commodities such as sand and gravel.

Please help your friends learn more about our mission by sharing this page on social media!

We administer the Idaho Lake Protection Act and regulate encroachments and activities on, in, or above the navigable lakes in the State of Idaho. Encroachments are anything permanently fixed to the lake bed or natural features of the lake bed (such as rocks). Examples of navigational and non navigational encroachments permitted by the IDL include docks, marinas, bridges, utility lines, mooring buoys, and float homes. Authorization and sometimes compensation is required to construct or otherwise use the space above, in, or under the beds of navigable waterways in Idaho.

Services Menu

Navigable Waterways

At any time, the State of Idaho may determine through court action or some other means that additional lakes and rivers will be declared navigable for title purposes. The authority to conclusively determine navigability rests with the State Board of Land Commissioners and ultimately with the courts. However, IDL employees may determine the location of the ordinary high water mark along public trust lands.

Program Contacts


Marde Mensinger
Navigable Waters Program Manager

To find and contact your closest Idaho Department of Lands office see our Supervisory Area map.

ver: 3.5.2a | last updated:
Jump back to top of page button