Sandpoint Idaho

An Outdoor Paradise!

Green highway sign for the Idaho city of Sandpoint, county seat of Bonner County

Eighty miles east of Spokane, Washington, snuggled in between the mountain ranges of northern Idaho and located on Lake Pend Oreille is the outdoor paradise of Sandpoint, Idaho. Active with life year-round, Sandpoint has it all. Let’s take a peek.

Sandpoint is the home of the largest theme park in the Northwestern United States, Silverwood Theme Park. The main attraction is the Aftershock. A wild and woolly rollercoaster that stands 191 feet tall, hits 65 mph and pulls in 4.5 Gs. Not your style? That’s ok. There are a couple of other rollercoasters that will get your heart rate up, and even, has an attached waterpark, Boulder Beach.

A man and a woman are riding their bikes on a cyclocross course in the fall.

More of the biking type? Sandpoint has several biking trails that entertain both the beginner and the extreme bikers. Get your GoPro ready and make your own action film. These trails range from 2.1 miles to a 28-mile loop, and are available starting in mid- to late spring.

Hikers often use these trails, as well, and others to see the gorgeous countryside. Just make sure you know your skill level. Some of the trails may be short, but steep, like the Maiden Rock Trail. Hiking up to the Maiden Rock, is only 2 miles up, with a round trip of 4 miles and gets really steep the closer to the rock you get. The view is worth it, if you are in good shape!

A wakeboarder is catching air in an early morning session as fog slowly lifts in the background.

Sandpoint has golfing, horseback riding and, my favorite, water sports including kayaking and rafting. If you are not looking for a trill and just want a peaceful paddle, Sand Creek is a good choice. Not only is the water calm and relaxing, you can see much of downtown Sandpoint from your kayak. For a more adventurous outing, the Priest River is good for beginning rafters with eight miles of Class II-III rapids to keep you busy. More experienced? The Moyie River is for you, with challenging Class III rapids that may turn into Class IV when the water is higher.

Add all this up with the usual winter sports and you have an outdoor lover’s delight. But for the ones looking for something else, Sandpoint is also known for its music festivals, craft breweries and, of course, a spa. Even a floating restaurant at the marina offers a unique experience in dining.

a beautiful rural countryside scene in northern Idaho.

There are several campgrounds and RV parks that offer beautiful views, B&B’s or luxury accommodations, and even glamping, for those who want a little more than just a tent. In short, Sandpoint, Idaho has something for everyone at anytime of the year. Of course, you can get there by flying into the Spokane airport, but did you know that Amtrak also could get you there? But that’s another adventure!

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