Flat, easy riding makes traversing the panhandle of Idaho a breeze. Our biking begins in the state of Washington, crossing into Idaho’s Silver Valley, eventually dipping into Montana enough to access the renowned Route of the Hiawatha.
The Silver Valley of Idaho is packed full of Mother Nature’s beauty. Thick forests, rambling rivers, and vivid-blue mountain lakes will have you asking yourself why you haven’t explored this paradise sooner. Set in the Coeur d’Alene Mountains in the northern part of the state, the valley gets its name from gold rushers panning for gold but finding an abundance of silver instead. In fact, a few of the trails we’ll be riding on were once old mine railroad lines.
Washington and Idaho have both made huge efforts to create fabulous recreational tree-lined trails cutting through mountainsides via train tunnels and skirting around beautiful rivers and lakes. We’ll enjoy a number of these on our adventure – from the 73-mile Trail of the Coeur d’Alenes, originally used as a footpath by the Coeur d’Alene Indians, to the Route of the Hiawatha, a 15-mile long, all downhill trail that runs through 10 train tunnels and 7 sky-high trestles.
Throw in cute mountain towns, the Inland Empire of Spokane, and prolific outdoor nature and you have one outstanding bike tour.
Private Tour Info
Want to make this trip even more memorable? Grab your friends and pick a date.Start planning your private tour
- Dates: July 21 - 25, 2019
- Cost Per Person: $2,300
- Optional Single Supplement: $600
- Private Tour Minimum: 10
- Activities: Biking
- Difficulty: All Abilities
- Guides: Aaron Rothfolk, Beth Peluse
Other Info: Bike rental $35/day is additional charge.Book this Tour
- Bike 72 miles on the continuous, car-free paved Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes.
- Meet the "Prime Minister" of historic Wallace, Idaho and have your photo taken at the "Center of the Universe."
- Explore the fun lake resort town of Couer d'Alene.
- Bike through tunnels and over soaring trestles on the Route of the Hiawatha.
- Cross off three states (Idaho, Washington and Montana) on your biking bucket list!
We meet in Spokane, Washington either at the airport if you fly in that morning or downtown if you arrive the day before. Spokane is a hip, growing city that is a fun alternative to Seattle in the Evergreen State. We begin our trip with introductions to each other and our bicycles and a nice warmup ride on the Columbia Plateau State Park Trail. We then check into our hotel, located on the Spokane River, and walk through Riverfront Park to dinner at a family-owned Italian restaurant. Biking Distance: Up to 15 miles.
Today we head east on the Spokane River Centennial Trail out the back door of our hotel and cycle from the hotel to the resort town of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. Located on the shore of beautiful Lake Coeur d'Alene, you will have time here for lunch on your own and a little exploring. We then shuttle by van to the small mountain town of Wallace, Idaho - population 759! Join the "Prime Minister" of Wallace on a walking tour of town or journey to the Center of the Universe before we head to dinner at a local restaurant. Biking Distance: 20 or 37 miles
Today’s destination? The "Crown Jewel" of Rail-to-Trail Adventures: The Route of the Hiawatha! This section of the Milwaukee rail line boasts 15 miles of blissful biking with ten train tunnels, including the 1.6 mile-long St. Paul Pass Tunnel (also known as the Taft Tunnel) and seven sky-high trestles. The best part? It's all slightly downhill! There will be plenty of time to enjoy our ride, stopping for photos and interpretive markers. We'll then head back to Wallace where you can choose from a number of activities including a hike on the Pulaski Trail commemorating Big Ed Pulaski, his crew and the Fires of 1910; the Oasis Bordello Musuem; the Northern Pacific Railroad Depot Museum; or a locally brewed beer at Wallace Brewing. Biking Distance: 15 miles or 27 miles
Yesterday's trail was the "Crown Jewel" of rail trails, but today's trail, the Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes, is in the Rails-to-Trails Hall of Fame, and likely to be a day of bicycling you will never forget! Whether you choose to do all 72 miles or just a portion you'll be amazed at how the miles fly by as you bike almost all the way across the Panhandle of Idaho along the Coeur d'Alene River, through forests, farmlands, wetlands and over Lake Couer d'Alene via the Chatcolet Bridge. Tonight is our farewell dinner in Coeur d'Alene. Biking Distance: 27, 49, or 72 miles
Our final morning ride is a perfect out-and-back on the North Idaho Centennial Trail along the shores of Lake Coeur d'Alene. We turn around at the trail's end, Higgens Point, and pedal back to the hotel, arriving in time for a shower before checking out. You are then free to grab lunch before we depart for the Spokane Airport. Biking Distance: 14 milesBook this Tour
NIGHT 1 >> OXFORD SUITES / SPOKANE, WA
This conveniently located hotel is right on the bike path, near Riverfront Park and within easy walking distance of downtown Spokane shops and restaurants.
NIGHTS 2 & 3 >> WALLACE INN / WALLACE, ID
At the base of the Bitterroot Mountains, the Wallace Inn is the perfect base camp for us to explore Idaho's Silver Valley. It is is also located in a charmingly cute little town.
NIGHT 4 >> BLACKWELL BOUTIQUE HOTEL / COEUR d'ALENE, ID
The Blackwell is the juxtaposition of historical grandeur blended with contemporary design, in a quiet Coeur d'Alene neighborhood close to the bike path, downtown and the lake.Book this Tour
Arrival & Departure
We meet you just after lunch in Spokane, WA either at the airport (airport code: GEG) or at a designated hotel. We then shuttle straight to our first trailhead so you'll want to dress ready to ride. On the last day of the tour, we'll have time for a morning ride and a quick shower before we check out of the hotel and head to the airport, arriving by 1:00 pm.
- At least two Zephyr guides accompany each trip and a third is added as necessary.
- Double occupancy lodging is included. If you are traveling solo, we will match you with another traveler of the same gender. However, you may pay a single supplement to have your own room.
- All of your dinners and breakfasts are included. Gratuity for these meals is also included. In general, we leave lunches open so that you have time to explore and enjoy the local flavors en route.
- All your transportation is included once you meet your guides on the first day.
- All trail fees and permits are included.
- NOT INCLUDED Beverages, desserts, lunches, gratuities to your guides, personal expenses and travel to and from the destination.
July is a great time to visit the Silver Valley, with mostly blue skies and very little chance of rain (though we'd still recommend packing rain gear just in case!). The average high temperate is 81 degrees so it can get quite warm during the day and the average low temperature is 50 degrees.
Extending Your Stay
You might consider spending an extra day in Spokane before or after the tour, as we don’t spend much time there during the tour. There is also plenty of additional biking as well as hiking and water sports to be found in North Idaho, and we'd be happy to make recommendations based on your interests.
Changes to Your Itinerary
While everything under “What is Included” will remain the same, the actual restaurants, hotels, and activities listed in our itineraries are subject to modifications. Changes that are out of our control are common – a restaurant closes or loses its awesome chef, a winery changes its visiting hours, a hotel gets remodeled, a road or trail undergoes construction. You are entrusting us to create an outstanding vacation for you and so it is possible we may take the liberty of making necessary changes (even at the last minute, during the guides’ scout trip) to the itinerary that will improve your overall trip experience. If there is any one experience that is going to make or break your trip, please discuss this with us in advance! We will attempt to keep our website itinerary as current as possible and communicate any major changes with you in the weeks prior to the tour.
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