Category Archives: Spring in North Idaho

Spring & Coeur d’Alene Lake – Time for Salmon and Pike Fishing

Spring and early summer fishing on Coeur d’Alene Lake is a fantastic way to relax and enjoy the beauty of North Idaho. Combine the excellent scenery of the surrounding area around our magnificent lake with the ability to catch large fish and you’re in for a great experience!

11 lb. Chinook Salmon Caught in April 2009

11 lb. Chinook Salmon Caught in April 2009

Coeur d’Alene Lake is one of the few places in the United States that has a sustainable land-locked Chinook Salmon fishery. In 1982, Chinook Salmon were stocked in the lake and now the fishery has grown to be one of the most popular in the Northwest. The catch rate in the spring and early summer are good with the average Chinook weighing in at 3 to 8 pounds. However, it is not uncommon to catch 10 and 11 pound fish as well.

If you have never fished for Northern Pike, then you are in for a treat. These aggressive fish are the apex warm water predator in Coeur d’Alene Lake. Continue reading

“Staycations”—Ideas for Locals Who Want to Explore Their Own Backyard

Need to take a break from work without breaking your budget? Why not consider taking a staycation? If you aren’t completely familiar with this term, here’s the official definition:

“A vacation that is spent at one’s home enjoying all that home and one’s home environs offers. A dream vacation right at your doorstep.”
The Urban Dictionary

In light of today’s tight economy, choosing a staycation this year is an excellent way to relax and explore the beauty of North Idaho. We live in such a magnificent place…why not spend some time exploring and experiencing some of the great locations close to home! A staycation offers you the ability to “play tourist” right at home.

Like any vacation, a staycation requires planning. Let TMI Tours help you plan your excursions. Interested in a private boat tour of Lake Coeur d’Alene? Want to try your hand at fly fishing some of the world class rivers and streams in our area? How about about spending a day whitewater rafting?

This is only a sampling of the unique adventures that TMI can create for you and your family here in North Idaho. Please feel free to call us at 1-800-975-7775 or email us at [email protected] for more information about planning your staycation.

Lake Coeur d’Alene Vacation Rentals

TMI Tours has a wide variety of accommodations in and around the Coeur d’Alene area. Our luxury home and cabin rentals come with all the amenities you could want in a summer vacation on Lake Coeur d’Alene—private homes complete with beautiful lake views, open air decks, sandy beaches, dock space for boats, jet skis, and more.

Personal watercraft rentals are a great way to see the lake and a sure fire way to add some excitement to your day. We can arrange jet skis or wave runners for you to enjoy for the day, or park them at your dock and use them anytime during your stay.

If you have never experienced the thrill of sailing your own boat, this is the perfect place to try it. Lake Coeur d’Alene always has gentle breezes on the water and we can arrange for you to learn with one of our sailing experts. The perfect ending to a day of sailing is refreshments on the deck at Silver Beach, where all the local sailors meet!

Water sports are a huge part of lakefront living on Coeur d’Alene Lake. Water skiing, boogie boarding, wakeboarding, and tubing can all be available right from your own dock and we’ll be happy to arrange instruction for beginners.

Your vacation won’t be complete until you’ve spent the day exploring the 130 miles of shoreline on a private lake tour. Armed with sun tan lotion, cool drinks, and a gourmet lunch, we can show you the most beautiful, secluded lake homes, wildlife drinking at the water’s edge, or the world’s only floating golf green. Enjoy lunch and swim at an un-crowded beach or go ashore to enjoy one of the lake crowd’s favorite watering holes. Learn about the rich and lively history of this lake and the small towns that still thrive on its shores. Let us take you up the “Shadowy St. Joe River” where the water is so clear, you’ll be able to spot fish swimming beneath the boat.

A vacation home in or around Lake Coeur d’Alene gives you the ability to enjoy a multitude of activities. To learn more about the many benefits of vacationing in our beautiful resort town, please call Linda Bruno or Rhonda Sand at 1-800-975-7775.

Explore the Northwest by RV

There is something very alluring about the open road and destinations unknown. Renting a RV for your vacation is a great way to bond with the family and still experience that sense of open road adventure. Let’s look at some of the great advantages of a RV vacation:

  • Getting Back to Nature – The great outdoors is what a RV vacation is all about. The Inland Northwest has rugged, unspoiled National Parks, sparkling clean lakes and rivers that are easily accessible from the highways and un-crowded campgrounds and RV Parks.
  • Campgrounds – You can choose the amenities that are important to you and your family. We can find you anything from rustic and secluded locations to parks with swimming pools, fishing ponds, game rooms, restaurants, and preplanned activities for adults and children.
  • The Comforts of Home – You can enjoy the fun and excitement of camping, yet retain the comforts of a full kitchen, TV, DVD, bathroom, and shower. And if the weather is unpredictable, you don’t have to suffer through it.
  • Fun for the Kids – They will love traveling in their “home on wheels” and children of all ages enjoy an old-fashioned campfire complete with stories, songs, stargazing, and of course s’mores!
  • Flexibility – You can change your locations at your own comfortable pace. Driving yourself gives you control over your schedule and allows you to really explore this beautiful country.
  • Relaxation – Get out there and really enjoy the leisurely pace of traveling by RV. You won’t return from this vacation feeling like you need a vacation. Take the opportunity to truly relax and unwind in some of the world’s most spectacular scenery.

TMI Tours, located in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, has all the information you need to start planning a great RV vacation for your family or group. We can plan your road trip, stock your RV, and recommend perfect places to stay and play in the Pacific Northwest. Please contact Rhonda Sand or Linda Bruno at TMI Tours or email us at [email protected] for more unique ideas on how to spend your next vacation.

Private Tours of Lake Coeur d'Alene

Tubbs Hill, Wolf Lodge Bay, Squaw Bay, Arrow Point, Rockford Bay, Kidd Island Bay, Cougar Bay…these are as familiar to the Coeur d’Alene locals’ as their own front yards. For an intimate, leisurely boat tour of Lake Coeur d’Alene, spend the afternoon with one of our expert, local guides.

Armed with sun tan lotion, cool drinks, and a gourmet lunch, we can show you the most beautiful, secluded lake homes, wildlife drinking at the water’s edge, or the world’s only floating golf green.  Enjoy lunch and swim at an uncrowded beach or go ashore at one of the favorite watering holes of the lake crowd. Learn about the rich and lively history of this lake and the small towns that still thrive on its shores.

  Lake Coeur d’Alene is fed by three rivers, the Coeur d’Alene, the St. Maries and the St. Joe, which is one of the highest navigable rivers in the world. An excursion up the “Shadowy St. Joe River” reveals water so clear, you’ll see fish swimming around the boat and the lattice work of fallen trees and limbs on the bottom. The Spokane River drains the west end of the lake and is a popular cruise, running along the city’s public beach, the North Idaho College campus, and the opulent riverfront homes that line its shores. 

Sit back, relax, and enjoy the unique scenery that makes North Idaho such a  popular vacation spot.  Call TMI Tours for reservations and itinerary ideas to make your stay in Coeur d’ Alene a memorable one. Email us at [email protected] or call 1-800-975-7775 for more information.

Spring has Sprung in North Idaho!

After a beautiful, but long winter, spring is finally emerging here in North Idaho. With warmer weather creeping in, it’s time to start planning those weekend getaways and summer vacations. So…what do you want to do?

Interested in whitewater rafting? TMI has many exciting rafting packages available. We can create trips for any skill level. From beginners to expert rafters, we are able to create single day events or multi-day adventures for you.

How about taking an RV to Glacier National Park, Yellowstone National Park…or both? We can set it up! Leave the details to us and let us arrange everything for you – right down to making sure the refrigerator in your RV is well stocked for your adventure. An RV vacation is excellent for families, couples, or individuals seeking to explore these magnificent national parks.

Looking to just relax by the lake or one of our pristine rivers? Let us find the perfect cabin or luxurious lakefront home for your getaway. TMI is able to provide some of the most magnificent homes available in North Idaho. From quaint to super luxurious, TMI is able to secure a property that will match up well with your desires.

These are only a few of the ways to enjoy the beauty of North Idaho and the surrounding area. TMI Tours is anxious to be of assistance to those planning a visit to North Idaho. Please feel free to call us at 1-800-975-7775 or email us at [email protected] to discuss your spring and summer vacation plans!

Moose – Silent Giants of the Forest

Bull Moose

Bull Moose Photographed while Snowshoeing near Spirit Lake, Idaho

Seeing a moose in its natural habitat is an amazing treat. We have the privilege of living in an area of United States which is heavily populated with moose. Along with all of the other wonderful wildlife found here (elk, whitetail and mule deer, mountain lions, wolves, black bears, and grizzly bears), North Idaho is a great place to observe and photograph moose.

The average adult moose stands 6–7 ft high at the shoulder. Males (bulls) may weigh anywhere from 850–1600 pounds and females (cows) may weigh 600–800 pounds. Typically, the antlers of a mature bull may span from 3 ft and 5 ft in width. The moose is the second largest land animal (bison is the largest) in both North America and Europe.

Bulls will drop their antlers after the mating season and to conserve energy during the peak of winter. A new set of antlers will then re-grow in the spring. Antlers take three to five months to fully develop, making them one of the fastest growing animal organs known. Initially, new antlers have a layer of skin called felt which is shed once the antlers become fully grown. Immature bulls may not shed their antlers for the winter, but retain them until the following spring. Spring time in North Idaho is famous for “shed hunting”, which involves getting out in the backcountry by either hiking, riding atv’s, four wheel drive vehicles, snowmobiles, or snowshoes (depending on the weather and terrain) to look for dropped moose, elk, or deer antlers. Continue reading

Ancient Cedars and Waterfalls

Looking for a great day trip or an interesting place to visit on your customized Self Drive Experience? The Roosevelt Ancient Cedars and Granite Falls are an excellent destination for anyone visiting North Idaho. Located near the Idaho/Washington border, on the west side of Priest Lake, Granite Falls cascades down a narrow, sheer rock gorge and hits the bottom with a thunderous roar. A one mile loop trail from the lower cedar grove will take you to excellent view areas about the lower falls where you are able to view both the upper and lower portions of the falls. If you continue another ½ mile on past the vista points, you will arrive in the upper cedar grove.

The Roosevelt Grove of Ancient Cedars is the home of a virgin forest containing giant cedar trees that are up to 2000 years old. The trees here are up to 12 feet in diameter and reach heights of 150 feet. The area was designated a Scenic Area in 1943. These sentinels are amazing. You’ll find yourself stopping constantly and just looking up at their beauty. Don’t forget your camera! If you want, TMI Tours will also arrange a gourmet picnic lunch prepared in advance by one of the top chefs in our area. Imagine sitting in the picnic area under these giant, ancient trees…what a great experience!

This is just one of many great locations to visit in North Idaho. Let us help you arrange day trips or a complete itinerary for your family or group so that you can maximize your enjoyment of the natural beauty that we enjoy here in the Inland Northwest. Call us today at 1-800-975-7775 to start planning your adventure.

Exhilarating Whitewater

Idaho has more miles of whitewater river than any other state; over 3,000 miles of perfect, raftable adventure.    A whitewater vacation in Idaho can mean anything from 1 day to multi-day trips with overnight campsites along the river.

In the Spring and early Summer, the water is high and the rafting is exciting.  1 day trips on the Moyie River and the St. Joe River are a great way to introduce yourself to river running.  These are true northern Idaho rivers, deep wilderness canyons, lush cedar forests and wild, wild water! In late summer and early fall, 1 day trips on the Clark Fork River in Montana, combine roller-coaster waves with warm pools for swimming and relaxing.

Probably the most quintessential Idaho whitewater experience is the Middle Fork of the Salmon River.  This is one of the 10 top whitewater rivers in the world and it is known for it’s trout fishery, natural hot springs, wildlife, ancient pictographs and class III/IV rapids. Running through the Frank Church-River of No Return-Wilderness (the largest forest wilderness in the lower 48), these trips are lengths of 3, 5 or 6 days, combining whitewater thrills, soothing hot springs and luxury beach camping. 

Drive along any river in Idaho during the summer, and you will see people floating along on inner tubes, inflatable islands, rafts … just about anything they can commandeer to get on the water.  This is the local’s favorite way of travel and a great way to enjoy a warm summer day and see beautiful scenery and wildlife.   There are several companies that will rent you floats, drop you off and pick you up at the end of your trip.  All you have to do is relax and enjoy the ride.

Call us at TMI Tours for rates and information on the best whitewater trips.  Come and experience some of the wildest rivers in the country, right in our backyard.

Ride the Hiawatha

Everyone should ride the Hiawatha Trail…at least once! Whether you’re a North Idaho local or you’re just visiting our beautiful area, we highly recommend this beautiful, easy bike ride.

This “crown jewel” of rail-to-trail mountain bicycle trails is located near Interstate 90 at the Idaho/Montana state line, 12 miles east of historic Wallace, Idaho. With 10 tunnels and 7 high trestles, this 15-mile winding route crosses the rugged Bitteroot Mountains between Idaho and Montana. The Route of the Hiawatha is best known for the long, dark Taft Tunnel, which burrows for 1.66 miles under the Idaho/Montana state line.

While a 15 mile bike ride (one way) may seem daunting to many, it’s an easy trail to ride. Keep in mind that it never exceeds a 2% grade anywhere on the trail (due to government regulations when the railroad was built). This makes it an easy trail for children and adults of any age and skill level. For bikers who enjoy longer, more challenging rides, you may turn around at the end and ride back up for a total of 30 miles.

There are several spots along the trail that feature historical markers and beautiful vistas await you at every turn. Don’t forget your camera!

TMI Tours can make all of the arrangements for your group if you wish – tickets, bike rentals, headlamps (required), and even gourmet picnic lunches! Call us today at 1-800-975-7775 to plan your trip. The tentative opening for the Hiawatha this year is May 24th, 2009!