Selkirk Mountain Real Estate
 

 

 

548 Rim Drive
Moyie Springs, ID. 83845
Office:  (208) 267-7900
Cell: (208) 290-5701
Fax: (208) 267-6186

 

Contact E-Mail

 

Boundary County Idaho River

North Idaho Wildlife

Bonner County Sunset

Spring Lake Pend Oreille

Winter Lake Pend Oreille

Sandpoint Idaho Sandpoint Long Bridge

North Idaho Sleigh Ride

Priest Lake Idaho 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Welcome to Bonners Ferry

Bonners Ferry, county seat to Boundary County, sits in the northeastern corner of Idaho, nestled in a fertile glacial valley on the banks of the Kootenai River, twenty-four miles south of Canada & sixteen miles west of Montana. Bonners Ferry is surrounded by three mountain ranges: the Cabinets to the south & east, the Purcells to the north, & the Selkirks to the west.
A new, first of its kind in the nation, cable-stressed concrete bridge & sidewalk connects the north & south sides of Bonners Ferry.  The bridge is part of a bypass system which has provided the city with an exceptionally sizeable, well built parking lot.  People from all over the country can now enjoy the Visitor’s Center with lots of information on the area. 
This small city of over 2,500 independent people has grown from a muddy village on stilts, due to spring floods, to a city of brick buildings, paved roads, sidewalks, tree-lined streets, comfortable old & new neighborhoods, many churches, schools, a senior center, a library, & museums.  The business community offers plenty of goods & services to meet the needs of the whole community.  The economy is based primarily on the lumber industry & agriculture, ranching/farming, along with tourism & wholesale nursery production.  Bonners Ferry is truly a unique, pleasant small town, with a help-your-neighbor attitude & plenty of room for growth & new industry.  Bonners Ferry – On the Kootenai River where friendliness flows.

Bonners Ferry History

The city of Bonners Ferry was founded as the "jumping off" place for prospectors traveling the "Wildhorse Trail" northward to the British Columbia gold fields. An enterprising young merchant named Edwin Bonner from Washington State established a ferry in 1864 where the trail crossed the Kootenai River. In the 1880s the community of Bonners Ferry became a major supplier for the mines to the north.  Steamer service on the river began in 1883 & for twenty-five years it created a romantic history of carrying freight & passengers northward.  During this same time period a regular town developed along the south bank of the Kootenai River, formally establishing Bonners Ferry. The surrounding area began to diversify with the lumber industry's rapid growth & with time, Bonners Ferry settled in as a center of a lumber & farming community in northern Idaho.

Bonners Ferry Attractions & Recreation

Backpacking, Hiking & Trail Riding

Over 300 miles of National Forest trails are maintained in Bonners Ferry & surrounding area, extending deep into the unexplored portions of the country.  These trails give hikers & trail riders a real back-country experience.  Untouched mountain lakes, breathtaking views from ridge tops, & wildlife species in their natural setting are among the sites that draw users to these marvelous trails.  There are many unmarred drainages in the county where hikers & horsemen are offered an opportunity for extended travel in a primitive setting.  All Bonners Ferry District Trails are currently open to both hiking & stock use, & many trails are open to motorcycle use.  Users should check with the local U.S. Forest Service office regarding trail use & restrictions prior to their departure.

Fishing

There are over 250 miles of fishable waterways in Boundary County including 150 miles on National Forest Land.  Fishing is permitted on all but a few of these waters.  Consult the current Idaho State fishing regulations before you begin to catch your first rainbow, cutthroat, & brook trout.  There are at least thirteen low-elevation lakes & 25 high-elevation mountain lakes providing a wide variety of fishing. The lower lakes provide rainbow, brook trout, bass, & pan fish.  The upper lakes give you a chance to catch rainbow, cutthroat, & brook trout.  A few of the higher lakes have golden trout & grayling.

Snowmobiling & Cross-Country Skiing

Boundary County's National Forest lands have some of the finest snowmobiling & cross-country skiing opportunities in Idaho.  The 55,000 acre Sundance burn in Upper Falls, Ruby & Snow Creek are popular spots with snowmobilers.  Miles of open windblown snow in a scenic mountaintop setting is the attraction.  From the Sundance area the snowmobiler has spectacular vistas of the Kootenai Valley.  Cross-country skiers have access to the same areas.

Bonners Ferry Profile

Climate

Relatively moderate with four distinct seasons, temperatures seldom exceed 90 degrees during the summer & rarely fall below zero in the dead of winter. The average annual precipitation is 25" with most of this coming from October through March.  Boundary County's average frost-free period range from the middle of May to the middle of September.  In the agricultural region this allows for an approximate 130 day growing period. The residents enjoy a pleasant & moderate year-'round climate conducive to outdoor recreation, water sports, fishing, hiking, horseback riding, golfing, hunting, & some of the best snowmobiling in the northwest.

Population

Bonners Ferry: 2,507

Boundary County: 10,808

Approximately 75% of Boundary County is forested, thus most of the population lives in the Kootenai River Valley, which is where Bonners Ferry is located. The county experienced a drastic increase in population between 1980 and 2002; this was partially due to the scenery, recreational opportunities, quality of life, & affordable housing.

Economic Activity

Timber & agriculture are the county's traditional mainstays.  During the 1990s the timber industry in Boundary County bucked the trend of declining employment seen in most of the Pacific Northwest. Unfortunately, the trend caught up with the county in 2000, slowing the county's economy.  Agriculture's importance as an employer increased in the 1980s when Anheuser Busch developed Elk Mountain Farms, a large hops farm, & when several ornamental tree nurseries & Christmas tree farms opened.  The Busch hops farms are currently not in operation.
Boundary County has worked to diversify its economic base. In 1986 the Kootenai Tribe opened the Kootenai River Inn in Bonners Ferry, giving the county's small tourism industry new potential. In the 1990s the tribe added a casino, drawing more visitors. The tribe & the city of Bonners Ferry (recently selected by tourists as Idaho's friendliest city) have completed a downtown improvement project that brings even more visitors to our community.
In 2003 Boundary County suffered an economic blow when two of its largest mills in Bonners Ferry closed, putting nearly 140 people out of work. The community has responded by rallying together to meet the challenges & aggressively pursue economic development opportunities.

Bonners Ferry Community Services

The city government of Bonners Ferry is conducted by the mayor & four city councilmen.  A city administrator runs the day-to-day business of the town.  There is a pro-active police force & volunteer fire department. The city has a new fire station, city water & sewer system, & a dam on the Moyie River with a power plant. This power plant generates a majority of the cities electrical power.
Service organizations are an intricate part of Bonners Ferry.  The Chamber of Commerce, Lions Club, Kiwanis Club, American Legion & Auxiliary, Eagles & Auxiliary, Rotary, Shriner's, Masons, Eastern Star, Beta Sigma Phi, & POE, along with a host of other organizations, contribute to the activities & social services needed for a healthy & thriving community.

Welcome to Sandpoint

Located on the northern shore of Lake Pend Oreille, with the dramatic backdrop of the Selkirk Mountains, Sandpoint is ideally situated making it a fantastic four-season paradise.  Winter recreation, water sports, challenging golf courses, unique marketplaces, & panoramic views are only some of the attractions that make Sandpoint a great place to live.
Sandpoint residents pride themselves in their community & quality of life.  Known for their commitment to the arts, this charming city is a haven for cultural activity.  Home to many artists & musicians, the traditional Festival at Sandpoint is just one of the many community events...creating memories for a lifetime.
Sandpoint is the county seat of Bonner County. The main industries in the area are forest products, tourism, mail-order catalog retailing, & manufacturing.  Sandpoint continues to attract people from all over the nation, of various backgrounds & lifestyles, each hoping to take advantage of all that Sandpoint has to offer.  A warm welcome is extended to those desiring to be a part of this beautiful & diverse community.

Sandpoint Population: 7,354

Bonner County Population:40,476

Sandpoint History`

David Thompson, a famous explorer & land geographer, was the first white man to visit the Sandpoint area.  In 1809, Thompson & his partner "Big Finan" McDonald, founded the Kullyspell House, the first trading post on Hope Peninsula. Kullyspell only survived for two years.
It wasn't until the early 1880s that settlers took permanent root in the area, as was true with a large number of early Western towns in which the railroad played a significant part in their existence & development.  Once the Northern Pacific Railroad arrived in the area, settlers established the towns of Hope & Clark Fork in order to support the railroad operation.
The history of Sandpoint dates back to the 1880s when Robert Weeks opened a general store & dealt in furs as well.  The town was known as Pend Oreille for a long time. Pend Oreille now exists along the eastern lakeshore, from the current site.  This region grew slowly until the construction of the Great Northern Railroad in 1892.  L.D. Farmin was the one brought to Sandpoint as the agent for the Great Northern Railroad.  He filed on the original town site & laid-out the town of Sandpoint in 1898, ten feet above the high-water mark to the lake.
Sandpoint's beginning was tied directly to the development of the timber industry. The Humbird Mill & other mills in the area sought to harvest the timber resources in the region.  During the early 1990s the Humbird Mill employed around 225 men working two shifts to keep up with timber demand.  Timber played a major role in the local economy as Sandpoint developed & became known for the cedar electric & telegraph poles produced by local companies.  However, the community grew slowly until World War II brought the construction of Farragut Naval Base in Bayview. This boot camp trained over 300,000 seamen for duty in the war & introduced them to this astonishing region.
Since the slowdown after the war this area has grown in spurts, as disenchanted urbanites have sought a slower pace & lifestyle accompanied with the physical beauty of northern Idaho.  It is expected that this growth will continue well into the twenty-first century.

Sandpoint Arts & Entertainment

Generations are interlocked by culture, aesthetic, creative, & spiritual life within various social regions.  The manner in which a city or area appears & feels about itself is a manifestation of its culture.  Culture is composed of ceremony, history, dance, festivals, sculpture, pottery, poetry, painting, music, theatre, literature, & science.  Cultural resources include the arts, history, recreation, environment, ethnic cultures, community events & local education.  The Sandpoint area is rich in all aspects of the culture & arts.
Many of the community's arts & culture-related events are produced by the Pend Oreille Arts Council, a non-profit corporation established in 1978. The council serves Sandpoint year 'round, presenting quality arts & humanities programs for regional audiences.  Each year, the Arts Council sponsors a wide variety of artistic events, including ArtWalk in the summer.

Lake Pend Oreille

Lake Pend Oreille, nature's master-piece, is one of the largest lakes in the west, approximately forty-three miles long & six miles wide with depths of over 1,150 feet.  The lake is a large natural reservoir for a watershed covering 22,000 square miles of western Montana & nearly 1,000 square miles of western Idaho.  More than 200 miles of the snowpack on the Bitterroot, Flathead, & Mission Ranges melts & collects in a network of rivers that eventually drain into the Clark Fork River, the lake's largest tributary.  Lake Pend Oreille has 111 miles of shoreline including mainland & islands with variations of sand or pebble beaches & grassy banks.  On the south end of the lake there are towering cliffs plummeting to the water's edge.  On the northern side of the lake, rise the craggy Selkirk Mountains, home to Schweitzer Mountain Resort. The exclusive sandy beaches which extend into downtown Sandpoint are the reason for naming the town "Sandpoint."   From Sandpoint's City Beach you can tour the lake by boat while enjoying the view at your leisure & visit the small communities situated around the lake such as Hope, Garfield Bay, & Bayview.
Idaho's longest two-lane pedestrian walk & bike path, called the "Pedestrian Long Bridge" crosses the lake at Sandpoint.  This is a great path for endurance & triathlon training.
For deep-water lake fishing, charter a boat & test your ability while trying to catch a record-size rainbow trout, mackinaw, or Kamloops, which have been known to tip the scale at thirty pounds.  Some of the quaint & quieter bays yield largemouth bass, yellow perch, crappie, & bluegill.  Cutthroat, brown trout & kokanee seem to prefer the shoreline areas.
If you enjoy wildlife viewing, the lake affords a panoramic view in every direction, making it simple to spot swans, geese, ducks, loons, & the great blue heron.  Look to the sky overhead for the majestic osprey, bald eagle, & a variety of hawks.  While on the shoreline you may see a lonely moose wandering out of the water from feeding.  At the south end of the lake you may see mountain goats roaming the cliffs of Bernard Peak, just around the corner from Farragut State Park.
There are many ways to enjoy the natural beauty & wonders of the area, from boating, wildlife viewing, fishing, to hiking along the obscure trails that circle the lake.  Just sit back & ponder your surroundings & stunning scenery.

Snowmobiling & Cross-Country Skiing

In northern Idaho snowmobiling is quite possibly the best in the country.  One of the more renowned areas is Priest Lake.  Besides thousands of acres of open country stretching all the way to the Canadian border, there are over 400 miles of groomed snowmobile trails to be explored.  Local folks say the best riding is at the north end of the lake, where groomed trails lead snowmobiles into the backcountry bowls of the Selkirks.
The area is also a cross-country skier's haven with acres & acres of country available to ski.  Schweitzer offers opportunities for the cross-country skier. State parks in the area have cross-country ski trails.
In the summertime, Schweitzer blossoms into a resort with various festivals, mountain biking, hiking, Icelandic horse riders, llama tour hikes, huckleberry picking, & all-around spectacular views of Lake Pend Oreille & the surrounding Selkirks.

Sandpoint Profile

Climate

Sandpoint has a true four-season’s climate that is much more moderate than that found further east in the Rockies. There usually is neither extremely hot nor cold weather; there are only a few sub-zero days each winter, while summer has equally few days where the temperature rises above 90 degrees. Nights are generally cool & crisp.  There is an average of 125 frost-free days each year. Precipitation averages around 33.3" per year.  Snowpack in the mountains during November, December, January, February, & March averages 87.8" per year.  The heaviest precipitation comes during the winter months.  Summer is the driest, with weeks of consecutive clear sunny days, not uncommon in this part of the country.

Economy

The Sandpoint & vicinity economy has traditionally been based on the timber industry.  Although this industry is declining other industries are beginning to offset the loss in the timber industry. Tourism is an important industry in the Northern Panhandle. Each summer sees an influx of visitors who enjoy fishing & boating on Lake Pend Oreille & hiking in the surrounding mountains. The Idaho Club, a Jack Nicklaus signature golf course and home sites, has been a great addition to the county.  Visitors arrive from everywhere to play a round of golf. Recent changes at Schweitzer Mountain Resort have made Sandpoint truly a year-round destination. The quad chair, lighting for night skiing, snow-making equipment, & a new hotel all combine to make Schweitzer a regional destination.

 

“UP NORTH”

The year starts out with winter’s falling snow,
The tree limbs glisten and the children do know,
It’s time for skiing & sledding as snowflakes soar
With snowball tossing, hot chocolate & more.

Spring brings the rain and the rivers flow
Wildflowers bloom & the sunsets glow
Deer give birth & their fawns prance around
The meadows are green and wildlife abounds.

Summer’s gentle breezes waft through the air
With boating & swimming & a real country fair,
Picnics & fishing & nightly stars gleaming bright,
Bring a time of the year that is truly a delight.

Autumn’s colors paint a picture in the mountains high
With orange, burgundy & yellow beneath the clouds in the sky
Fireplace smoke spirals & there’s a nip in the air
And the last of warm weather leaves the area with flair.

“Up North” is more than a state of mind,
It’s a dream, a place, that’s one of a kind.
The sweet smell of pine & the wail of the loon,
The peace & the quiet can be yours soon.

God’s country awaits you, the promise is here,
Contentment, community, peace of mind is near.
Bring your family, your plans to a place without measure;
New lives, new friends - forever to treasure.

By Donna Capurso

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