On the Lake

The Northwest's largest lake has so much to offer

In Sandpoint, you can enjoy beautiful Lake Pend Oreille all year long! Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. 

City Parks

Sandpoint has over 20 parks, public gathering spaces, or designated community locations. With a variety of amenities and activities available, City Parks have something to offer people of all ages year-round.

Sandpoint Ranger District

The Village of Sandpoint was incorporated on February 7, 1901.

On January 15, 1907 the Village of Sandpoint became the City of Sandpoint. The April, 1907 election moved the City onto a mayor/council form of government – the same form of government we have today.

Bonner County was originally part of Kootenai County, but separated from this larger unit on March 18, 1907. Eight years later, on January 23, 1915, the county was reduced to its present size when the northern half separated to form Boundary County. Sandpoint has been the county seat of Bonner County since 1907.

The Kalispel, Kutenai and other native peoples were the first inhabitants of this area. They lived along the waterways and utilized the area’s abundant natural resources for survival.

Sandpoint is famous for having recreational activities for every season. Some of our Forest opportunities range from, camping, fishing, hunting, berry picking, trail hikes, nature walks, horseback riding, bike riding, ATV/OHV trails, skiing.

Visually the Sandpoint area is hard to beat. Framed by the Selkirk and Cabinet mountains, Sandpoint is located on the north shore of Lake Pend Oreille, Idaho’s largest lake. Travelers driving Highway 95 across the Long Bridge into Sandpoint have often reported a feeling of “coming home.”

Priest Lake State Park

Priest Lake State Park lies just 30 miles from the Canadian border, nestled deep below the crest of the Selkirk Mountains. Surrounded by the natural beauty of Northern Idaho and mile-high mountains, Priest Lake State Park sits along the eastern shores of Priest Lake, a 19-mile long, 300-foot-deep waterbody.

Visitors to the park will enjoy the dense forests of cedar, fir and tamarack and will be able to observe the park’s year round inhabitants such as the whitetail deer, black bear, moose and bald eagles. Noted for its extremely clear water, fed by streams cascading from the high Selkirk peaks, the main body of Priest Lake extends north-south for 19 miles. A two-mile thoroughfare connects the main lake to the remote Upper Priest Lake that is accessible only by foot, mountain bike, or boat.

Priest Lake Ranger District

Priest Lake, which is often referred to by the natives as “God’s Country”, was originally called Roothaan Lake by Father Desmet in 1846 in honor of his Jesuit Superior in Rome. One of the prominent peaks in the Selkirk Range still bears the name Roothaan.

In 1865, Captain John Mullan designated this same lake as Kaniksu Lake on one of his maps. It is believed that “Kaniksu” was the Indian name of Black Robe, although this has never been authenticated. The name was gradually changed in the early 1900’s from Kaniksu Lake to its present name of Priest Lake, which refers to the early-day Jesuit missionary priests who had established a base camp at Kalispell Bay in the 1840’s.

The lake is one of three largest and most beautiful lakes in the Idaho Panhandle, and a very popular recreation attraction. The world’s largest Makinaw trout was caught here in 1963. Dolly Varden, Cutthroat, and Kokanee are also caught in the lake. It is now illegal to fish for Dolly Varden and they are to be returned to the lake when caught.

Upper Priest Lake is part of the Upper Priest Lake Scenic Area. There were five small parcels of private land totaling about 420 acres on Upper Priest Lake. The Forest Service purchased these tracts in 1967 with the assistance of Nature Conservancy. The entire shoreline of Upper Priest Lake is now in either the State of Idaho or Federal ownership, and is administered as a scenic area.

Upper Priest River, which flows into Upper Priest Lake, is one of the rivers to be studied for inclusion in the Wild and Scenic Rivers system along with the lower Priest River which was famous in the early days as a log-drive stream. The first recorded drive was in 1901 and the last in 1949. The greatest drive took place in 1931 when 50,000 cedar poles and 125,000,000 board feet or logs were herded down the river by the “river pigs”.

Priest Lake Chamber

Priest Lake is an ideal year-round family and adventure vacation destination.  Nature’s spectacular backdrop coupled with the myriad of recreational activities make Priest Lake an unforgettable experience. Discover Idaho’s crown jewel while enjoying bikinggolfingfishingrock climbing or snowmobiling and choose to stay in any of our hospitable resorts, cabins or vacation homes for an upcoming group activity, wedding, conference or seminar location for a vacation that will only tempt you to stay longer.

Dover Bay Marina and Resort

Offering seasonal boat moorage, gas, dock and a boat launch, Dover Bay Marina is located in the heart of Dover Bay. With 274-slips and deep-water, it offers premium amenities to ensure an exceptional boating experience.

  • Covered Single Berth Slips
  • 24-hour Fuel
  • Extensive Breakwater
  • Dockside Power & Water
  • Restrooms & Showers
  • Pump-out Station
  • Security Gates
  • On-site Boat Launch
  • Market
  • Boat & Trailer Storage
Long Drift Outfitters

Guided Fly Fishing & Float Trips along Kootenai River, ID. Experience the beauty and isolation of the rugged Kootenai River in north Idaho for your next adventure!    The Idaho section of the Kootenai flows through a beautiful canyon with virtually no access, accept by boat. The seclusion and isolation of the river adds to its Idaho ruggedness and beauty. The Kootenai River provides room to fish with most days leaving you the river to yourself. Come see what has been hiding in North Idaho and book your next trip with Long Drift Outfitters.

Sandpoint Seaplane

About our pilot: Stephen is an experienced professional, with more than 30 years of flying experience, having operated in the Arctic regions of Alaska for twelve years. He has over 7000 hours of flying time, and maintains an Aircraft Mechanic Certificate with Inspection Authorization.

Go Fish! Charters

Go Fish! Charters offers hands-on, multi-species fishing on Lake Pend Oreille and Clark Fork River. Experience the excitement and diversity on the Pend Oreille fishery! Go Fish! operates year-round and offers custom charters, including sunrise and sunset trips. Charters depart from Sandpoint and Hope.

Lake Pend Oreille Cruises

With multiple choices for launching, the 111 miles of Lake Pend Oreille coastline provides routes that will allow you to experience the wilderness, from its mountain heights to its watery depths, from its quiet coves to its broad expanses. Though technically not the lake, the water west of the Long Bridge to Dover Bay allows boaters to explore downriver.

Sand Creek

Peaceful, meandering Sand Creek couldn’t be more convenient or perfect for kayaking, canoeing or SUB’s. Conveniently located in downtown Sandpoint, City Beach is a perfect place to launch and paddle thru the marina and along the banks of town.

Clark Fork River

For the experienced paddler, the Clark Fork is one of many year-round waterways for those who want to meander through Idaho and Montana. There is whitewater, so faster water can present a challenge for novice paddler.

Bottle Bay Resort

Bottle Bay Resort and Marina includes Bottle Bay Bar & Grill, cabin rentals with private beach area, marina with public gas, boat launch and boat rentals, all located on beautiful and peaceful Bottle Bay.

Round Lake State Park

This intimate park, 10 miles south of Sandpoint on Highway 95 and two miles west on Dufort Road, offers seven miles of marked and groomed cross-country trails. Depending on conditions, there may also be opportunities for ice skating, sledding, fishing or a picnic, often served up with a roaring bonfire. $2 per vehicle fee; annual Idaho State Park passes are available for $15. For a map or more information, call 208-263-3489; or click parksandrecreation.idaho.gov/parks/round-lake/.

Farragut State park

With more than 9 miles of groomed trails, Farragut offers easy terrain and great views of the lake. Located on the southern tip of Lake Pend Oreille, about 40 minutes driving time from Sandpoint via U.S. Highway 95, Farragut is a crown jewel of Idaho’s state parks.

Sandpoint Marine & Motorsports

Sandpoint Marine & Motorsports offers a variety of watercraft rentals, from speedboats to pontoon boats to jet ski and kayak rentals. Half day, full day or hourly rentals, all from downtown Sandpoint.

Get the latest four wheelers and side by sides in stock at our Ponderay location!

208-263-1535; SandpointMarineAndMotorsports.com.

A Day on the Lake Rentals

A Day on the Lake Rentals offers full-service rentals of ski boats, pontoons, SeaDoos, and vacation homes on Lake Pend Oreille. Make your vacation memorable by touring the lake by boat. Delivery available.

877-890-2444 or 208-755-4958

ADayontheLake.com

Lake Pend Oreille Cruises

Lake Pend Oreille Cruises offers a variety of public tours including history, eagle watching, and dinner cruises as well as private charters. Please call 208-255-5253 for information and reservations.

Explore all that Sandpoint, Idaho has to offer! Get our takes on must-experience events, activities, attractions, restaurants, and lodging—as well as plenty of tips on visiting our town, parks and far more—all curated by those who know this gem state by heart.

Staying in Sandpoint

Playing in Sandpoint

Dining in Sandpoint

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