About Caribou County

The Oldest and the Youngest County Seat in the State of Idaho

  • Established 1919 – Population 6963 (2010 Census) County Seat – Soda Springs
  • In 1864, the Idaho Legislature created Oneida County and designated Soda Springs as the County seat—(the oldest) after three years the county seat was moved to Malad. The 1919 Idaho State legislature passed House Bill No. 4 and created Caribou County, also designating Soda Springs as the County seat (the youngest), the last of the 44 counties in the State of Idaho. Hence the Oldest and Youngest County Seat in the State of Idaho. County Commissioners met and were sworn in March 13, 1919.
  • The county area was 1,263 square miles (808,320 Acres). This size remained until 1949 when a section of Bannock County was annexed. The addition enlarged the area of the county to 1,799 square miles and 1,118,000 Acres. The size it is today.
  • The first white men in the county were trappers from the Wilson Price Hunt Expedition.
  • Donald McKenzie and his men were the first white traders in the region.
  • The first wagons over the Oregon Trail entered the county in 1830 on their way to Oregon and Soda Springs became a famous stopping point.
  • The first settlers came in 1863, led by Col. P. Edward Conner and established Fort Conner.
  • The first mail service was from Bannock to Soda Springs. Mail service was easy in the summer, but had to be carried on snowshoes during the winter.
  • In the summer of 1882, the first railroad, the Union Pacific Oregon Short Line, reached the County.
  • Caribou County is a high altitude county. Elevation varies from 5000 to 6300 feet in the valleys and 6000 feet to 9500 feet in the mountains. Elevation of Soda Springs is 5779 feet.
  • Maximum temperature is 103°
  • Minimum temperature is minus 40°
  • Average winter temperature is 15°
  • Average summer temperature is 80°