[Cdt-l] Hitchhiking in Idaho -- followup

Jonathan Ley jonathan at phlumf.com
Wed Jul 27 14:18:27 CDT 2011

I can't understand how these laws are constitutional. We have a right to 
free speech & free assembly in this country, and that's what hitching is 
- asking for a ride (speech) and getting a ride (assembly). I could 
possibly understand hitchhiking being made illegal for safety reasons. 
But, then you'd have to make it illegal to walk on the shoulder of any 
road as well.

I wonder if you could make a sign that said something like:
I am not asking for a ride to X...
But might consider it if you offered.

That might technically comply with the law ;-). But, good luck 
explaining that to an officer... they generally don't appreciate clever 

There's more about this here:

State specific info here:

Montana - somewhat restricted, but not bad:

Idaho - illegal:

Wyoming - illegal:

Colorado - no problem:

New Mexico - a little restricted but not a real problem:


On 7/27/2011 5:50 AM, Brill Stephen wrote:
> I wanted to follow-up on the recent post concerning hitchhiking in 
> Idaho.Yes, it is illegal to hitchhike in the Gem State.My own personal 
> experience in this may be helpful.
> Last year I was hitching back to my home in Boise after a 4-day CDT 
> hike in Yellowstone.My friend picked me up from the trail and after 
> spending the night at his place in Island Park, drove me to Rexburg, 
> from where I started hitching.
> It was a Sunday morning in the heart of Idaho’s MoCo.I managed to get 
> a ride from Rexburg to Mud Lake but had a very difficult time getting 
> out of Mud Lake.After about two hours trying to hitch out of Mud Lake, 
> a state trooper came by and informed me that what I was doing 
> (standing by the side of the road with a sign reading “Arco”) was 
> against the law in Idaho.Had there been a sidewalk there and had I 
> been standing on the sidewalk with my sign, this would have been 
> ok.But since there was no sidewalk, even though I was well off the 
> roadway, what I was doing was illegal.It is illegal to attempt to 
> solicit a ride with your thumb or sign if you are on a highway (or any 
> public road, for that matter).According to this trooper, it is 
> perfectly legal to simply stand by the side of the road if you make no 
> attempt to solicit a ride.It is also legal to ask a motorist in a 
> stopped car for a ride.This last strategy eventually worked for me, 
> and I was incredibly fortunate to catch a ride all the way from Mud 
> Lake to Boise, a distance of about 250 miles.
> Finally it is worth noting that before the trooper left he said he 
> would return in a few hours..And if he saw me out there attempting to 
> solicit a ride illegally, he would arrest me.
> Hope this helps for all those considering hitchhiking in Idaho.My 
> suggestion is to go to a gas station and ask for a ride, rather than 
> attempt to truly hitch.
> -- Moondancer
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