After I dropped Alyse off in Missoula, MT I headed to Spokane, WA to pick up Kayleigh. From there we traveled to Northern Idaho to the sweet little lake town of Coeur d’Alene.
Two years ago on the drive home from my summer trip, Kayleigh and I drove through Coeur d’Alene and thought it was one of the most beautiful places we had ever seen. We decided that we wanted to come back to explore the area and that we did!
Day 1 we stayed local by going to the area park where we hiked around Tubbs Hill. It’s a beautiful spot that I’m sure would make a perfect place to watch the sunset. The weather was pretty cloudy and as we were wrapping up our little hike it started to rain. So we headed to lunch at Crickets!
The weather cleared up in the evening and we spent it back at camp down by the water with the pups.
Day 2 was a whole lot of fun! A definite highlight of my trip. We traveled just across the border into Montana to bike the Route of the Hiawatha. It is a 15 miles bike ride through the mountains on an old railway track that has been converted into a trail! This is a project that spans across the U.S. and is lead by the Rails to Trails initiative! So cool!
The trail starts off through a 2 mile long tunnel 😱 2 miles doesn’t sound that long until you are in the pitch black, wet and windy tunnel with only a little lamp to guide you! Not to mention the gigantic group of teenage boy scouts hollering (so they could hear their echo) behind! I felt like I was in some zombie apocalypse movie! With the light at the end of the tunnel always in sight but never feeling any closer!
Once out of the tunnel there was a nice little waterfall and blue skies! The trail has signage along the way talking about the history of the trail and the surrounding forest. In the Great Fire of 1910, THREE MILLION acres were ravaged by one of the worst forest fires our country has ever seen. The mountains are once again covered in green trees and it is hard to imagine them all once being covered in flames. THREE MILLION, I can’t imagine. It is actually the main reason why forest are managed the way they are now. Controlled burns and other forest maintenance programs would have prevented an event like this from ever occurring.
As we winded our way down the mountain we went through 9 more (much shorter) tunnels and over 7 trestles (my favorite)! The trail took us about 2.5 hours but we had to rush a little bit because I didn’t do enough research. I didn’t realize that we could have easily spent 4 hours making our way through. We had to be to the end by a certain time so that we could catch the last shuttle back up to my car. Also, it shouldn’t go without mentioning that we had the funniest, most knowledgeable and entertaining shuttle bus man, thanks Tim!
Kayleigh and I had the time of our lives getting covered in mud and enjoying the sunshine! The Boy Scouts stayed with us most of the time and had us laughing the whole way down. It was a nice distraction from all the pain I was in. I should have sprang for the comfort seat on my bike! 🤣🤣 ha!
If you are ever in the area I couldn’t recommend this enough!
Almost forgot to include the highlight of the trail!
After an exciting Day 2 we knew we wanted to explore the Idaho-Montana border area a little more so we loaded up the dogs and headed to The Center of the Universe; Wallace, Idaho (more on this in a second)!
Wallace is an old mining town and was at the epicenter of the Great Fire of 1910. One of the hero’s of that fire was Pulaski. He was a National Forest Park Ranger and he saved 45 of his men by leading them into an old mine and out of harms way. The trail that we hiked has signs all along the way about him and the fire. It was an awesome trail next to a nice river.
After our hike we obviously had to check out the local brewery where we got to talk to some locals about why the town is The Center of the Universe. Check out the explanation in the picture below! Obviously, I had to get a picture with the pups at The (exact) Center of the Universe! It was a fun town and one I would definitely visit again!
On the way home we made a pit stop at Elmer’s Fountain. A beautiful fountain that is made up of old mining parts and fed by the neighboring mountain stream!
Day 3 Kayleigh and I went to explore Spokane. It was a beautiful, clean city but a little disappointing for a reason I can’t exactly put my finger on?? We stopped by some of their local art installations (Radio Flyer Wagon playground and Garbage Goat), got coffee and took in the beautiful waterfalls through the center of the city.
Day 4 was spent exploring Coeur d’Alene. We went shopping downtown. Had a delicious lunch at Crafted and then hiked Mineral Ridge. It was a beautiful hike with one of the best views of Lake Coeur d’Alene!
We stayed at Camp Coeur d’Alene and it was perfect! Every morning and evening I would take the dogs up to the top of camp to see the perfect views!
#102 – Funny neighbors.
#103 – Awesome friendships.
#104 – Relaxing and rainy days.
#105 – Entertaining dog parks.
“The major problems in the world are the result of the difference between the wya nature works and the way man thinks.”