Welcome to North Idaho

To live in a place other people dream of visiting is incredible. Through the lens of my camera OnLocation North Idaho will bring you a slice of life as we know it in the Idaho panhandle. Enjoy!

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Take the Plunge!

On the first day of the new year, start with a run along Lake Coeur d'Alene in the Hangover Handicap and then at the stroke of noon, the 31st Annual Polar Bear Plunge takes place at Sanders Beach ... water temperature 40 degrees! Either way, you're likely to get wet and sure to be cold, with snow in the forecast for North Idaho on the first day of 2010!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Towering Lights

McEuen Terrace, which overlooks McEuen Field, Tubbs Hill and Lake Coeur d'Alene in downtown Coeur d'Alene, is dressed for the season.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Wet Winter

North Idaho has seen far more rain than snow so far this winter. Last year was epic in snowfall volume which made for some incredible images in white like these steps down to Lake Coeur d'Alene at Independence Point. Winter recreationists won't be disappointed by the snowpack at Schweitzer, Silver Mountain and Lookout Pass, though.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Eagle Eye View

I spend a lot of time on location with the eagles on Lake Coeur d'Alene this time of year. As I watched several swoop and soar and dive for fish I wondered what the view was like from their vantage point ... kokanee salmon in post-spawning death throes and people with cameras.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Frozen Fish

A fisherman checks his frozen fishing hole on Fernan Lake Monday afternoon. A light snow was falling and the ice is several inches thick on the small lake at the east end of Coeur d'Alene.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Centennial Trail Sunset

Even on a winter's day, walkers, cyclists and runners enjoy the view of Lake Coeur d'Alene from the Centennial Trail on Coeur d'Alene Lake Drive. This sunset is just one of the reasons the trail is used year around.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Frozen Falls

The water features on Spokane Street's I-90 on and off ramps in Post Falls are looking more like ice sculptures this week after several days of single digit and below zero temperatures in North Idaho.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Eagle Watching

The eagles have arrived on Lake Coeur d'Alene! As many as 100 bald eagles spend the month of December at Wolf Lodge Bay and Higgens Point to feed on Kokanee salmon before continuing their southern migration. Higgens Point has eagle viewing informational kiosks and public parking right at lake's edge. Eagle photographs HERE. More information on eagle watching cruises and education from the Idaho Dept. of Fish and Game click HERE.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Ramping up the season

The iconic Cedars Floating Restaurant, off of Blackwell Island where Lake Coeur d'Alene flows into the Spokane River, is dressed for the holidays. The lake level is at its winter low. In the summer months, this ramp is not so much of an incline.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Frosty Green

The world-famous floating green at the Coeur d'Alene Resort Golf Course is covered in frost on a very cold December Sunday morning.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Full Moon

I enjoy far more moon rises than sun rises in the course of my nightowl lifestyle. On the first day of December a beautiful full moon was rising on the east as the sun was setting in the west in North Idaho.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Countdown to 2010

The 24' wide pine wreath on the parking garage of the Coeur d'Alene Resort reminds us of the year about to come to an end. Weighing nearly 3 tons, the wreath is handcrafted each year by Post Falls florist, Connie O'Neil.

Lighting up the lake

The annual fireworks display over Lake Coeur d'Alene dwarfed the Coeur d'Alene Resort cruise boats which were filled with revelers as Coeur d'Alene's downtown was officially lit up for the season.

Dressed for December

The grounds of the Coeur d'Alene Resort and downtown's Sherman Avenue are all dressed in lights, although Mother Nature has yet to blanket North Idaho in white.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Nothing says Christmas like ...

... shotgun shell lights on the tree. These, and other outdoors-themed lights like Coleman lanterns, are displayed at Cabela's in Post Falls.

Kicking off Christmas!

The day after Thanksgiving, the Christmas season kicks off in Coeur d'Alene with the Festival of Lights Parade at dusk. At parade's end, thousands gather on the lawn of the Coeur d'Alene Resort for the official flipping of the switch to light up the downtown. At the Resort alone there are over a million lights strung.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Birds on a wire

On a sunny but cold North Idaho November day, hundreds of starlings surveyed the landscape from overhead wires. Every few minutes they'd swoop as a group to feed in the fields below.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Gobble Gobble

With less than a week before Thanksgiving, a family of wild turkeys parades through a Fernan Lake neighborhood.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

First snow

The first measurable snow of the season fell on Friday the 13th. By Saturday it was still dusting the fields of the prairie and Rathdrum Mountain. At the Idaho/Montana stateline Lookout Ski and Recreation area opened this weekend for early season skiiers.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

In like a lamb

November arrived in North Idaho without a roar. Beautiful blue skies and mild temperatures made for some great late season golf at the Highlands Country Club in Post Falls. Dozens of golfers were out on the links and the driving range on a sunny Sunday ... which just happened to be November 1.

Fire on the Mountain

On Saturday, smoke and fire could be seen on the south side of Rathdrum Mountain, high winds sending the smoke nearly horizontal. No cause for alarm ... evidently it was a controlled slash burn.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The difference a day makes ...

The first flakes of measurable snow fell on North Idaho this morning, even before all the leaves have fallen from the trees.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Shades of Picnics Past

A gazebo at Q'emlin Park on the Spokane River is framed by fall foliage on one of these bonus sunny days of fall. Picnic tables are stacked for storage with the first North Idaho snowfall just around the corner.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Autumn Art

At every turn the artistry of Autumn is visible in North Idaho. Even a leaf-covered lawn on a rainy day is reason enough to pause and enjoy.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Rainy Monday

The rains fell in North Idaho and the grassy swale in the Kootenai County Admin building parking lot resembled a lake. Is that the floating green or just a stormwater cover? :)

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Slipping Away

The vacant boat slips at Redlion Templin's Marina on the Spokane River in Post Falls have shed their blue canvas canopies but the colorful fall foliage provides a feast for the eyes.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Hunting Season

Last year Coors featured a camoflauge design on their canned beer and this year, just in time for hunting season, Miller and Busch weighed in with colorful camo cans. 'Tis the season in North Idaho.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Day's End

Sunsets in North Idaho are beautiful any time of year but in the Fall, they come much earlier in the day. This view is from Chase Road in Post Falls at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Deserted Lake

The summer crowds have gone, leaving the shores of Lake Coeur d'Alene's Booth Park empty except for a few broken branches. On a windy October Day the ripples on the water create an artistic visual.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Fishing at Fernan

On a brisk but sunny day, the public fishing dock at Coeur d'Alene's Fernan Lake is a popular spot for all ages.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Season of the Cat

In advance of All Hallows Eve a black cat hides in plain sight behind a shrub in the midst of changing colors for fall.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Birds of a feather

A flock of young sparrows perch near berry bushes after a fall feeding frenzy during a windy and cool North Idaho afternoon.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Fall Fell

I'm usually dragged kicking and screaming out of summer each year, but I do enjoy the beautiful north Idaho autumns once summer's over. This driveway at the east end of Fernan Lake offers a postcard view of the beauty that's there for the looking.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

So long September

On the last Sunday of September warm weather was the only excuse these youngsters needed for an afternoon in the Spokane River at Post Falls' Corbin Park.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

On the lake

A kayaker glides away from Sanders Beach on Lake Coeur d'Alene with The Terraces luxury condos and the Coeur d'Alene Resort golf course as a backdrop.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Good Shot

On Saturday, Vicki Isakson of Coeur d'Alene bagged a 5X5 point elk in the Idaho Panhandle. Fall means hunting season for many North Idahoans, and right now bow season is open. Check HERE for Idaho's rules and regulations for hunters from the Fish & Game Department.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Sun Setting on Summer

The temperatures are dropping and the coming of fall can be felt in the air but sunsets on the Spokane River in Post Falls are reminders of summer on the water in North Idaho.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Fernan Lake Rainbow

Sam Crawford captured a rainbow over his Fernan Lake neighborhood on Tuesday evening. In North Idaho, summer storms often create beautiful rainbows before the blue skies return.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Monday Masts

Sailboats in the harbor at Bayview signal summer's swan song. Formed by glaciers Lake Pend Oreille (pond-or-ey) is Idaho's largest lake and one of the largest inland lakes in North America. A renowned recreation and fishing mecca with a shoreline of 143 miles, its depth has been measured in excess of 1,170 feet. The name came from the early French trappers, referring to the earlobe pendants worn by the local Indian tribe.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Practice Makes Perfect

The Spirit Lake fireboat put on quite a show for those along the shore at Spirit Lake's Silver Beach while performing an equipment check on what might very well have been the last summer day with temperatures in the '90s.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Dog Days of Summer

As August comes to an end, near triple digit temperatures return making a swim in the lake the perfect way to spend the day. Pebbles, a long-haired Chihuahua, enjoys cooling off with a dog paddle in North Idaho's Spirit Lake.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Fair Food

The North Idaho Fair kicks off today at the Kootenai County Fairgrounds and runs through Sunday. A favorite fair treat is found at the award-winning Ekness booth ~ North Idaho Beer Balls. Add a little kraut and some onions and they're delish. There are the standby elephant ears, cotton candy, deep fried everything including Twinkies and Snickers bars. The Lutherans have a long-time favorite food-on-a-stick ... The Viking, which is breaded, deep-fried meatballs. If you want to eat something a little more diet friendly ... try a fresh ear of corn-on-the-cob from the Lions. What melted butter? :)

Monday, August 24, 2009

Monday in Paradise

As the dog days of summer begin to turn the corner into back to school, Monday afternoons are still time for play in North Idaho. On the Spokane River a boat pulled two tubes of thrill-seekers through the waves.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Simple Pleasures

We have an abundance of natural and spectacular beauty in North Idaho so sometimes it's good to be reminded of the simple yet special places. Rathdrum's city park is just such a place. Right on Hwy. 53, with a gazebo, pavilion and a playground, my favorite feature is the creek that runs through the center of the park. Rathdrum Creek is the quintessential small town swimming and fishing hole and in early evening on a summer's day, it's the perfect place for a picnic dinner.

Friday, August 21, 2009

On the water

Today and tomorrow is the free Wooden Boat Show at the Coeur d'Alene Resort's boardwalk marina. I never tire of seeing these beautiful boats so lovingly restored. And any excuse to be in or on or near the water in August is good.

Murray or Bust

This weekend the little North Idaho mining town of Murray rolls out the welcome mat for their annual celebration. It's everything Idaho used to be, and then some.In the 1800s there were more people living in Murray than in Spokane. I love that even now with a population in the double digits, Murray still boasts a post office and their own zip code. Not to miss: The Spragpole bar and museum and the historic cemetary where many of the Silver Valley's most colorful characters reside for eternity.
How to get there: Take Kingston Exit 43 from I-90 and follow the Coeur d'Alene River Road north about 30 miles.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

History Revisited

The new Post Falls Historical Society Museum opened with much fanfare on Saturday. Located in the restored former Chapin Drugs building on the corner of Spokane Street and 4th Avenue on the Post Falls City Hall campus, it's filled with artifacts and mementos of this milltown on the Spokane River. For hours and information use this link.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Sparkly web

A remnant of overnight thundershowers in the Idaho panhandle were captured in a spider's web on my front porch steps.