The Perfect Idaho Vacation

Sandpoint, Idaho, is the spot for a wonderful vacation experience. National Geographic Magazine described this area as "one of the ten most scenic and desirable areas in the country. An undiscovered Aspen of the Northwest on a spectacular lake." The lake they were mentioning is Lake Pend Oreille.

The lake's name came from the early French trappers. "Pend Oreille" translates to "Hangs Ear." The trappers were referring to the earlobe pendants worn by the local Native American Tribe, the Kalispels.

Today, Lake Pend Oreille is the source of numerous aquatic activities for visitors to Sandpoint. Swimming, windsurfing, jetskiing, waterskiing, and wakeboarding are just a few of the things you can experience on Lake Pend Oreille.

Rent a houseboat and spend your entire Idaho vacation afloat on the lake! Or take in a scenic evening dinner cruise meant for just the two of you to rekindle romance. At measurements of 6 miles wide and 43 miles long, the lake is never too crowded to enjoy whatever you desire.

If your perfect getaway includes searching for fish, Lake Pend Oreille will not disappoint. It has been known to produce some seriously large fish, and it is not uncommon for anglers to pull Rainbow Trout out of Lake Pend Oreille weighing over 20 pounds! With 111 miles of shoreline to explore on Lake Pend Oreille, it might be worthwhile to hire a local fishing charter to show you the hotspots for Kokanee Salmon, Kamloops; Rainbows, Browns, and Brook Trout. Other game fish in Lake Pend Oreille include Large Mouth Bass, Whitefish, Yellow Perch, Black Crappie, Bluegill and Brown Bullhead.

Lake Pend Oreille is Idaho's deepest lake (measuring in at almost 1200 feet) and the nation's 5th deepest. It's no wonder stories abound of a large water monster since Lake Pend Oreille is deeper than Scotland's Loch Ness. But don't worry; this aquatic adversary has affectionately been named the "Pend Oreille Paddler." Various sightings over the years could be explained by a giant sturgeon, which historically reached lengths of 12 feet and longer, but doubts linger that the sightings amount to anything more than folklore.

The shoreline of Lake Pend Oreille serves as a resting and nesting area for Bald Eagles and Osprey. And the 4,000 scenic acres of Farragut State Park alongside the southern tip of Lake Pend Oreille provide many opportunities to watch for Deer, Elk, Bear, and Moose while picking wild Huckleberries. If Farragut State Park doesn't provide enough wildlife watching opportunities for you, the Idaho Panhandle, Colville, and Kootenai National Forests and the Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge are all within easy access of Sandpoint.