Location: East of Coeur d’Alene
Distance: 3.3 Miles
Mineral Ridge Scenic Area and National Recreation Trail
The Mineral Ridge National Recreation Trail is a backcountry hiking area overlooking Coeur d’Alene Lake to the east of Coeur d’Alene. MINERAL RIDGE was the first recreation site developed by the Bureau of Land Management in Idaho. Construction began in 1963 and on April 13, 1982, the trail was designated as a National Recreation Trail.
Mineral Ridge is a “classroom in the forest.” The plant and animal communities are used by local school districts for environmental education. The hike itself is considered moderate and affords enthusiasts sweeping views of the lake and Beauty Bay. Bring your binoculars for eagle watching in January-February. Every year, a population of approximately 150 bald eagles returns to Wolf Lodge Bay to feed on spawning Kokanee salmon. The Mineral Ridge Loop is 3.3 miles long and is open to hikers and mountain bikes. The summit of the Mineral Ridge Trail has an elevation of 2,800 feet, a rise of 660 feet from the parking lot. The main loop trail continues to the west and returns to the parking lot. Most trail-goers hike the loop in roughly two hours. The trail is open from March through November. For more information, visit www.blm.gov.