Pull out your trusty atlas and locate the state of Idaho. Way, way up towards the top of the state, just north of Coeur d' Alene you'll see Sandpoint and Priest River. Priest Lake is located 33 miles north of Priest River on Highway 57. Located just south of the Canadian border in the Idaho panhandle, Priest Lake offers something for absolutely everyone.
You can camp with a tent, camper, or motor home. Or, stay in a lodge or a fancy resort. There are a variety of lodging choices at Priest Lake.
Where To Stay: Priest Lake State Park offers several choices for campers - Dickensheet and Indian Creek campgrounds are the two most popular areas. Kaniksu Resort at the far north of the lake offers camping spots, RV hookups and a lodge.
Three of the most excellent resorts are the Elkins Resort, Grandview and Hills Resort. They are a bit pricey, but have wonderful cabins and suites - many at the edge of the lake. During the height of the season expect to find only weekly packages. A group of 6 to 8 people can rent lakeside cottages from $750.00 to $1,000.00 a week.
When To Go: From Memorial Day (May 31st) to Labor Day (September 6th) Priest Lake campgrounds, resorts, restaurants, lake-front bars, and locals haunts are all open and hopping. Luckily, Priest Lake is large enough to get away from everyone but small enough to run into old friends at the local gin-joints.
Wintertime brings lots and lots of snow, with Priest Lake businesses finally taking advantage of the snowmobile market. The lake area sports 400 miles of groomed snowmobile trails now, which is great for northwest winter getaways.
About the Lake: Elevation of 2,500 feet in the Selkirk Mountains. Priest Lake stretches 19 miles with 7 islands - perfect for exploration, hiking and boating. The surrounding mountains rise above 7,000 feet.
What to do at Priest Lake: Fishing (the largest Mackinaw trout in the United States was captured here!), swimming, boating, water skiing, huckleberry picking, hiking, lounging and snowmobiling in the winter.
Priest Lake is known for it's perfectly clear and clean water. There isn't any pollution . . . which is a rare find these days.
Upper Priest Lake: There is a second and more isolated lake called "Upper Priest Lake." The only access is by boat or on foot. This is our favorite haunt. it's not unusual to motor up the channel separating the two lakes and end up right next to a lazy moose making his way across the channel. Upper Priest Lake is pure beauty and isolation.
Many folks in the northwest United States know about the beauty and isolation of Priest Lake, Idaho. However, if you have not heard about it - and you love deep woods, a huge lake with secret little coves, and fabulous summers, Priest Lake could be your next great discovery.
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