IDAHO PANHANDLE NATIONAL FORESTS
Three of northern Idaho’s National Forests (Kaniksu, Coeur d’Alene, and St. Joe) are administered together as the Idaho Panhandle National Forests. There are several rugged mountain ranges in the region, including the Bitterroot Mountains, with elevations over 7,000 feet.
Forests are of pine and fir, spruce and larch, plus old-growth hemlock and cedar. Also here are many lakes, ponds, streams, and rivers, including the St. Joe National Wild and Scenic River. Among the wildlife are grizzly and black bear, moose, caribou, elk, white-tailed and mule deer, mountain goat, and lynx.
Activities: Hiking and backpacking are possible on over 2,000 miles of trails, including a section of the new Idaho Centennial Trail (see entry page 000) and the 41-mile Big Creek Trail. Difficulty ranges from easy to strenuous.
Horses are allowed on most trails, and crosscountry skiing is a winter option. Canoeing, kayaking, and rafting are available on the Priest, Coeur d’Alene, and several other rivers. Climbing and spelunking (caving) are other possibilities. Fishing is permitted, as is hunting in season.
Camping Regulations: Camping is allowed throughout the Idaho Panhandle National Forests,
except where otherwise prohibited. Campsites should be at least 100 feet from lakeshores and away from trails. Campfires are allowed but discouraged. A stove is suggested for cooking. No permits are necessary.
For Further Information: Idaho Panhandle National Forests, 1201 Ironwood Drive, Coeur d’Alene, ID 83814; (208)667-2561.