Active + Adventure

Great Summer Mountain Towns

by Sarah Tuff

Sandpoint, Idaho

The hills are alive with: Trout splashing about in crystal waters

Get elevated: The fish of Idaho's Lake Pend Oreille are so fat…
How fat are they?
They make yer mama look skinny!
Er, anyway, a 37-pound rainbow trout, a 37-pound bull trout, and a 43-pound lake trout have all tusseled with (and lost to) anglers on the cobalt-blue lake, which glistens beneath the 6,500-foot peaks of the Selkirk and Cabinet mountains. Sitting on the shores of Lake Pend Oreille (pronounced pon-duh-ray) is the water-mad townlet of Sandpoint. In the winter, skiers hit frozen stuff at Schweitzer Mountain, which towers above town. In summer, they buzz boats around the lake, whose 111 miles of shoreline and depths of up to 1,160 feet offer more than enough fishing spots for the scant population of 8,000. Seek out fishing guide Kurt Artner for half- or full-day charters for up to six anglers. At night, swap tales at the Selkirk Lodge, located at the base of Schweitzer. Many of the 82 rooms, with knotty pine beds and kitchenettes, have views of the surrounding mountains—and maybe even a glimpse of the next day's catch.

Peak time: All summer

Kurt Artner
Tel: 208 265 6781

Selkirk Lodge
Tel: 800 831 8810
Doubles from $145

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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