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!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Run in the sun

The last day of January in North Idaho is quite a contrast to the first day. Sunshine and temperatures in the high 30s made a perfect day for an afternoon jog for this woman and her canine companions. We had over 100 inches of snow fall in December and through the first week of January. But I've lived in the Coeur d'Alene area for the better part of four decades so have no delusions that we've seen the last of Old Man Winter just quite yet.

Friday, January 30, 2009

A very special torch

North Idaho was the final leg of the 2009 Law Enforcement Torch Run for the Special Olympics World Winter Games so it was a thrill to have the torch come through my home town on Friday. The ceremonial torch runs involve 120 law officers, athletes and support crew. The torch was lit by the sun’s rays in Athens, Greece in November, carried 37,000 miles by volunteers, through five continents. On Feb. 7 the flame will light the Olympic cauldron at the Idaho Center in Boise, marking the opening of the 2009 Special Olympics World Winter Games. The runners will have traveled by bus to 60 different cities in Idaho and taken part in more than 70 public ceremonies by the time the torch arrives at its destination.
Post Falls Mayor Clay Larkin, Police Chief Cliff Hayes and Post Falls PD Lt. Greg McLean pose with the torch at the Post Falls Police Department.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Leftover leaf

A solitary leaf that somehow escaped the rake last fall is covered in light snow on the driveway this morning.

Monday, January 26, 2009


High temperatures that barely broke into double digits in North Idaho have turned the water features into ice sculptures at I-90 offramps on Spokane Street in Post Falls.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Sign of Spring

This past week there have been robin sightings nearly every day. On Sunday a large flock came for a breakfast of berries. While there's no scientific evidence to back up my conclusion that even though North Idaho is in the midst of a near single digit cold snap, the robins are anticipating an early spring.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Frosty Fernan

This tree line along the road on the way to Fernan Saddle, high above Fernan Lake offers a typical picture postcard view of beautiful North Idaho in the winter.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Temps taking a dip

North Idaho temperatures are taking a dip in the next few days, dropping down into the single digits. Bundle up and enjoy the beauty of fog on the lake and the icy artistry on the trees. This solitary boater has a chilly Lake Coeur d'Alene all to himself.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Up the Creek

Rathdrum Creek runs off Rathdrum Mountain and here, where it flows through Rathdrum City Park, outcroppings from the shore create an icy mosaic.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

God Bless America

During the two years of the campaign cycle just one presidential candidate came on location to North Idaho ... former New York Mayor Rudy Guiliani, in August 2007, although other candidates, including President-elect Obama, visited the Gem state's capitol of Boise.
On this historic inauguration day, Idahoans and all Americans can take great pride in our country's incredibly respectful and celebratory transition of power. May God bless President George W. and Laura Bush as they begin their lives as private citizens and President Barack H. and Michele Obama who begin their extraordinary journey in the White House.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Man's Best Friend?

Considering that many neighborhoods in Kootenai County have experienced an over-population of deer, I was surprised to see this advertisement on the side of the farm and feed store on Highway 53 in Rathdrum. Deer Chow? Who knew.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Wash Day

I was on location in the FYImobile at the carwash on Highway 41 this morning, where business was brisk. Seems like the weekend sunshine magnified the grit and grime of winter on all manner of cars and trucks. Even a bright red Dodge Viper was out on the road and looking for a spitshine and polish.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Wild and Wooley

At first glance I thought I'd spotted an eight-legged and very wide sheep in a farmer's field on the Rathdrum Prairie. Alas, it was a pair of wooley pals staying warm on a frosty morning.

Skirting the Mountain

The weekend dawned sunny and bright in North Idaho but for a stubborn band of fog around the mountain near Hauser Lake's Hollister Hills area.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Frosty Fog

We haven't seen new snowfall in North Idaho for the past several days but the fog combined with freezing temperatures has decorated the pine trees on the Rathdrum Prairie in winter white.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Quiet Falls

The dam at Post Falls displays snow-covered rocks now but when the spring thaw in the mountains raises the lake level the gates will be wide open and spectacular. The viewing platform at Falls Park is a popular vantage point all year long.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Nature's Camouflage

What looks like a pinecone amongst the green pine needles is not as it seems.

It's the tail feathers of a ringnecked pheasant that came to visit in our yard this afternoon. Only the vibrant red markings and golden eyes give away the wild bird's true identity.

Polar Bear Pair

As the snow returns to North Idaho, the people at Flaherty's Fine Art & Framing on Government Way in Coeur d'Alene found a way to make lemonade from the weather lemons of late. Sculpted from an icy pile of snow this pair of polar bears is right at home.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Going low

Gas prices in Coeur d'Alene remained at $1.49 a gallon for the past few weeks until this most recent drop to $1.35! A tank of gas in the FYImobile set me back just $15.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Taking back our streets!

On Wednesday morning at the crack of dawn I went "onlocation" in the cab of a Post Falls city snowplow on the first day of the warming trend. It had been exactly three weeks since the snow started falling and fell in great huge record-breaking piles every single day. So as we headed out I asked Steve, my tour guide/plow jockey, what we'd be doing on that slushy morning. He declared, with no small amount of enthusiam, "Today we take back our streets!"Considering the plow crews had been working 12-hour shifts all through the holidays, it was obvious that they were looking forward to finally getting one up on Mother Nature.
So we pushed snow, spread sand, cursed cars parked and buried at the curbs and tried whenever possible to clear storm drains for the inevitable puddles of melted snow to flow.
Thanks to Steve Pritchett and all of the people who kept our streets cleared these past long weeks. But I'm thinking we've not seen the last of Old Man Winter in North Idaho.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Home Sweet Home

This 1905 home once stood on the corner of 9th and Sherman Avenue in Coeur d'Alene and our family lived there for almost a decade. Owned by former US Congressman John T. Wood (served 1951-53), it was a grand house filled with beautiful and ornate furnishings and finishings. To see how my sister Janna and I came to be reunited with this nostalgia from our childhood, go to http://www.cdapress.com/articles/2009/01/07/columns/columns03.txt

Monday, January 5, 2009

Icy Grip

The holiday balls still hanging from our front porch eaves have been encased in ice for days. Now the warmer temperatures are causing the ice to loosen its grip. I far prefer the North Idaho snow to the slush that's coming this week.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Thin Ice

This sign warns against thin ice on the fishing pond at Falls Park in Post Falls. It's also a good reminder that until there are sustained temperatures much colder than we've had here in North Idaho, caution is wise when ice fishing or skating on the lakes.

Sled Dog

This adventurous spaniel enjoyed a trip down the sledding hill with his owner on Sunday afternoon. Sears Hill off of Chase Road in Post Falls is a longtime favorite of sledders.

For a list of places to bring the family for North Idaho sledding fun, click the FYI logo at the top of this page.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Gimme Shelter

South of Coeur d'Alene, this snow white horse finds shelter and a warm coat are the best ways to deal with the Arctic Express that's headed to North Idaho this weekend. Bundle up!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Polar Plungers

I was OnLocation at Sanders Beach in Coeur d'Alene for the annual Polar Bear Plunge, a New Year's Day tradition. Beautiful big snowflakes greeted the new year in North Idaho.
Several hundred plungers and spectators gathered on the beach waiting for the stroke of noon.
Robert Cliff and David Kilmer were enthusiastic polar bear plungers in the 40 degree waters of Lake Coeur d'Alene. The Cliffs hosted a bonfire and afterparty at their historic Sanders Beach home.

Happy New Year!