Discovering the Charm of Priest River: A Treasure Trove of Outdoor Adventures

Nestled in the heart of Idaho’s panoramic landscapes, Priest River is a quaint town that offers a blend of serene beauty and adventurous activities. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, an adrenaline junkie, or someone looking to unwind, Priest River has something special for you. Let’s dive into the top activities and attractions that make this place a must-visit destination.

1. Explore the Great Outdoors at Priest Lake Priest Lake under a clear blue sky

Just a stone’s throw away from Priest River, Priest Lake is a paradise for outdoor lovers. Known as the “Crown Jewel” of Idaho, its crystal-clear waters and stunning mountain backdrop provide a picturesque setting for various recreational activities.

Boating and Fishing: Take to the waters with a boat rental and enjoy leisurely fishing for trout and bass. Don’t forget to soak in the breathtaking views of the Selkirk Mountains that reflect off the lake’s mirror-like surface.

Hiking Trails: Priest Lake offers an extensive network of trails for all levels. The Lakeshore Trail and the more challenging Upper Priest Lake Trail will lead you through dense forests, to hidden beaches, and can often reward you with wildlife sightings.

Camping: With numerous campsites around the lake, you can pitch a tent or park an RV to fully immerse yourself in the tranquil wilderness.

2. Relive History at the Priest River Museum

Dive into the past at the Priest River Museum and Logging Exhibit. The museum offers a fascinating glimpse into the region’s logging industry and local heritage with an array of artifacts, photographs, and stories.

Educational Exhibits: Explore exhibits that showcase vintage logging equipment, pioneer life, and the impact of the railway in the area.

Themed Events: The museum also hosts events that celebrate the town’s rich history, including demonstrations and interactive activities perfect for families.

3. Hit the Slopes at Nearby Ski Resorts

While Priest River itself isn’t a ski town, it’s within reach of some of the best slopes in Idaho. Resorts such as Schweitzer Mountain offer some of the finest skiing and snowboarding experiences, with a mix of runs catered to both beginners and experts.

Winter Sports: Apart from skiing and snowboarding, you can also engage in snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and tubing.

Year-Round Fun: The fun doesn’t stop in the winter – during the summer, activities such as mountain biking, hiking, and zip-lining become the main attractions.

4. Paddle the Priest River

A popular activity for those who prefer a more tranquil pace is to paddle down the Priest River itself. The river winds through some of the region’s most stunning scenery and offers various points to start your journey.

Kayaking and Canoeing: Whether you bring your own gear or rent from local outfitters, a peaceful day on the river is a rejuvenating experience.

Wildlife Observation: Keep your eyes peeled for ospreys, bald eagles, and moose along the banks of the river, a testament to the abundance of wildlife in the area.

5. Savor Local Flavors

After all the outdoor excitement, indulge in some local culinary delights. Priest River’s restaurants and breweries offer hearty meals and refreshing beverages.

Farm-to-Table Dining: Enjoy a meal made with locally sourced ingredients, showcasing the best of what the region has to offer.

Craft Breweries: Sample unique Idaho brews in an inviting atmosphere, often accompanied by live music and events.


Priest River, Idaho, is a vibrant town with captivating natural splendor, an interesting history, and a plethora of activities for everyone. Whether you’re paddling through the calm waters, hiking in the Selkirks, or merely relaxing by the shore of Priest Lake, you’ll find tranquility and adventure around every corner in this hidden gem.