Northern Idaho Byways

Elk River Backcountry Byway - This is a 57-mile route to adventure, fun and relaxation for travelers of all types.  Travelers quickly enter a vast evergreen forested landscape that draws one deeper and forward towards the horizon of the Clearwater Mountain range along the horizon. Through a series of dips and turns the route reveals the diversity of landscapes in this backcountry region of Idaho... 

Gold Rush - Rich in scenery, history, and wildlife, the route along Idaho 11 begins in Greer at the junction of U.S. 12 with an easy climb up the Greer Grade, providing a breathtaking, panoramic view of the Clearwater Valley. At the crest of the mountain lie the beautiful rolling fields of grains and grasses cultivated by local farmers....

Lake Coeur d'Alene - The Lake Coeur d’Alene Scenic Byway travels an area where the lakes, mountains, and beautiful summer weather have made it one of the most famous summer playgrounds and resort destinations in the Pacific Northwest. It’s also home to a variety of wildlife, including moose, deer, elk, bear and several bird species, still roaming the pristine forests of northern Idaho....

Northwest Passage - In 1803, President Jefferson commissioned Meriwether Lewis and William Clark to find the Northwest Passage – the link between the Missouri River and the Columbia River through the unexplored Rocky Mountains. This 202-mile byway, stretching across north-central Idaho, follows the explorers' route through the ancestral homeland of the Nez Perce people... 

Panhandle Rivers - The Panhandle Historic Rivers Passage begins at the Washington state line and follows the northern shore of the Pend Oreille River through Oldtown, Priest River, and ends in Sandpoint. This byway is the southern leg of the International Selkirk Loop which extends into Washington on the west and heads into British Columbia on the Wild Horse Trail Scenic Byway from Sandpoint on the east... 

Pend Oreille - The Pend Oreille Scenic Byway offers travelers some of Idaho’s most spectacular water views. Beginning at the intersection with U.S. 95, Idaho 200 meanders eastward to the Montana state line across farmlands, through river deltas, and along the rocky northern shores of Lake Pend Oreille, all sculpted by the massive force of glaciers and the floodwaters of Glacial Lake Missoula. Pullouts along the byway allow visitors to stop and enjoy breathtaking vistas of mountainous horizons framing miles of open water...

St. Joe - Your journey begins at the town of St. Maries where tug boats still ply the water. East you travel along the shadowy St. Joe River so named for the towering Cottonwoods which adorn the shore lines. Among these trees are bald eagles and osprey, which use the trees as nesting sites and perches where they launch themselves to pick up dinner from the feast provided by "The Joe." As you travel the first half of the byway the river is deep and still with picturesque mountain landscapes that are captured on the watery canvas... 

White Pine - The White Pine Scenic Byway begins on Idaho 3 at Interstate 90 near Cataldo, home to Old Mission of the Sacred Heart. Built in the mid-1800’s, the mission itself is the oldest building still standing in Idaho; travelers can also visit the nearby Parish House and two historic cemeteries on the grounds, and enjoy the visitor center, walking trails, and picnic areas.  The byway winds through rolling hills of the Palouse region to the historic town of Potlatch, once the site of the largest white pine lumber mill in the world. 

Wild Horse - The Wild Horse Trail Scenic Byway, part of the International Selkirk Loop, starts on the northwestern shores of Lake Pend Oreille in the resort community of Sandpoint. Heading north along the eastern side of the Selkirk Mountains the roadway follows the Kootenai Tribe’s historic path to fishing grounds at Lake Pend Oreille. In 1808 the first white explorer David Thompson also utilized this trail. The "Wild Horse Trail" became more than a path in 1863 when gold was discovered in “Wild Horse Creek,” 120 miles to the north of Bonners Ferry, Idaho, in British Columbia...


Blue Creek Bay, Wolf Lodge and Mineral Ridge