The IDL administers all public trust lands including navigable rivers in Idaho. The Idaho Department of Water Resources may administer the Stream Alteration Act for encroachments along rivers, but IDL still administers ownership of the public trust lands through issuance of easements and land disclaimers. The IDL also administers riverbed leasing for commodities such as sand and gravel.
Applications for riverbed leases are reviewed on a case by case basis.
Each application is advertised in a newspaper legal notice in the county or counties where the riverbed under application is located. The Land Board may order a public hearing to receive oral and written testimony if requested by 10 individuals whose lawful right to use the water applied for may be injured.
The IDL does not regulate suction dredge mining in Idaho rivers, unless the operation involves a hose greater than 8 inches in diameter.
Any applicant seeking to lease riverbed minerals must acquire all necessary permits from the Environmental Protection Agency and Idaho Department of Water Resources before operating on a lease.
Exploration LocationsExploration is the activity performed to locate mineral bodies and to determine their mineability and merchantability [Idaho Code § 47-1503(8)]. All state lands, endowment lands and navigable waters, are open for casual exploration unless they have been withdrawn [Idaho Code § 47-702(1)].
Withdrawn River Segments
Under the authorities of Idaho Code § 47-702(2), 47-1323, and 58-104(9) certain river segments have been withdrawn from mineral entry and exploration.