Floating the Coeur d'Alene River on a Lazy Summer Afternoon!

Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty Coeur d'Alene AB37665

Floating the Coeur d'Alene RiverFloating the North Fork of the Coeur d'alene River is the ticket for a pleasant afternoon with friends and family.  Off the beaten tourist track in the summer, the Coeur d'Alene River attracts hoards of locals with their flotillas of fun.  It's a party on the river!  Young and old, in tubes, kayaks, pontoons, and all manner of rafts, hooked together and gently floating with the slow moving current.  Literally, from babies to seniors and even dogs in life jackets, towing floating coolers with their picnic lunch and cold drinks.  Meandering down the river.  Once in a while someone breaks into song.  Or a baby cries, briefly.  A dog barks, a duck quacks.  Mostly, the sounds are laughter and conversation.  And everyone you pass, or who passes you, is smiling.

Floating the Coeur d'Alene RiverMy sister Kerri turned us on to river floating.  When my sister Ronna came for a visit with her family, a bunch of our extended family spent a day of fun on the river.  We headed out on I-90 east of Coeur d'Alene to Exit 43 (Kingston).  Once exiting the interstate, head north for about 1.5 miles on Coeur d'Alene River Road.  There, our first stop was The Snake Pit for a hearty breakfast to tide us over for a day of fun in the sun. (UPDATE July 2012 - The Snake Pit is currently for sale, contact me for more information.)

Now if you haven't yet experienced The Snake Pit, it's worth an excursion out there just for that experience.  A local landmark for over 100 years, it's something you don't want to miss! 

Just a Floating the Coeur d'Alene Riverbit further north, past The Snake Pit, you'll come to a little store where you can pay $5 and park all day.  This is the perfect, grassy spot to come out of the river when day is done.  Of course, your caravan of river floaters will leave one car there and then continue up the river about 4 or 5 miles to find a good spot to put in.  Be careful wherever you park, there was a story in the paper a couple weeks ago about many cars being towed from along the river.  One family came out of the water, their car was towed, the sun was setting, they didn't have a cell phone, cash, or any clue what to do.  Apparently, it's important that your parked car tire doesn't touch even a smidge of the road...

Floating the Coeur d'Alene River with Emily ParkOnce you find your upriver parking spot, it's a group effort to inflate the flotilla.  Kerri has all manner of tubes, inflatable lounge chairs, rafts and to the amazement of EVERY passerby, a huge Coleman Party Island!  It was the mother ship of our flotilla, and somehow we managed NOT to get a photo of it!  Most of our photos were taken FROM the mother ship, shaped like a huge blue donut about 10 feet across, with a hole in the middle for dangling our toes, a back rest encircling it, and Floating the Coeur d'Alene Riverenough room for 6 or 7 people to comfortably float, lounge, eat, take photos and direct the other members of the flotilla. 

Once we were inflated, we waited our turn to launch.  Kerri, floating veteran that she is, has collected nylon dog leashes that we used to clip the floatibles together into a giant flotilla.  We had a wonderful time.  The river was full of happy people that day.  We stopped a couple of times when the water was deep, to swim.  For one long stretch my nephew snorkeled behind the flotilla.  And when it was very Floating the Coeur d'Alene Rivershallow, the neices and nephews played frisbee down the river while we bobbed along at a snails pace.

The sights and scenery along the river are incredible.  It's a pleasant way to connect with nature and those you love, and it's right in our backyard!  One more tip from the veteran river floaters is that it gets quite chilly along the river when the sun sinks behind the tall pines that line the river in late afternoon.  The best time to launch is late morning.  Four or five hours later you'll be 4 or 5 miles down the river to your car before the shady river starts to chill you to the bone!

If you decide to take a float down the North Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River, keep your eyes open for our giant blue party island.  You can't miss it! 

Coeur d'Alene River Float Trip

Janna Rankin Scharf provides a superior level of real estate services to home buyers and sellers in Coeur d'Alene and Kootenai County, Idaho. Visit www.JannaScharf.com to search for homes in the Coeur d'Alene MLS for anywhere in spectacular North Idaho.

No matter how grand or modest your real estate dreams may be, you can turn to me in confidence.  Give me a call today and let me know what I can do to be of service to you!

Janna Rankin Scharf, AB, GRI, CSP, CNS, CLHMS  208.651.9700 

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Janna Rankin Scharf provides a superior level of real estate service to home buyers and sellers in Coeur d'Alene and Kootenai County, Idaho. Visit www.JannaScharf.com for area information and to search for all homes in the Coeur d'Alene Multiple Listing Service. 

No matter how grand or modest your real estate dreams may be, you can turn to me in confidence.  Give me a call today so I can  be of service to you!

Janna Rankin Scharf AB, GRI, CLHMS, PMN, SFR  208.651.9700

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Comments (7)

Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

Janna - There is nothing that exudes relaxation like a rafting trip on the river. . .Especially with the rubber ducks coming along:-)  I live a couple of blocks from the American River, and we have similar activity here, and it NEVER gets old!

Aug 18, 2009 11:20 AM
Andrea Swiedler
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties - New Milford, CT
Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT

Janna, first of all, THERE IS MY DUCK AGAIN! Hope you are taking good care of him, just send him home before next Memorial Day. He has a race to win here.

Next, what a great post. That just sounds like so much fun. I envy you with all that family around, and so many wonderful things to do with them. Way to go. The photos are great, the area is beautiful, it is really a no brainer, if you know what I mean!

Aug 18, 2009 11:36 AM
Loreena and Michael Yeo
3:16 team REALTY ~ Locally-owned Prosper TX Real Estate Co. - Prosper, TX
Real Estate Agents

This looks like super fun and relaxing. I sure would love to try it.

Aug 18, 2009 12:41 PM
Caren Wallace
Premier Property Group LLC - Tualatin, OR
Portland Caren Real Estate

Janna, that looks like loads of fun...love the blue flotilla! Y'all know how to party~right down to the little yellow rubber duckie!!

Aug 18, 2009 10:53 PM
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
New Hampshire Home Stager

This sounds like so much fun!  It is so hot out today, that would be heavenly!  I love the rubber ducky photo!

Aug 19, 2009 04:27 AM
Chanelle Cassandra Charon

I love floating this river! We are from Seattle, Wa and I can tell you it is worth the 6hr drive every year! I dream of the cool clear water, good company, and great camping at Alberts Landing! See you again this year!

Jun 20, 2014 12:00 AM
Josh Winters (Spud)

Oh how true it is! The Coeur D' ALene River north Fork is a north Idaho gem! If your interested in overnight trips on the CDA River, you can launch at Big Hank Campground (way north) and float all the way to CDA lake! It might take 2-3 days but its very relaxing and a great float for beginners who need to hone in their skills in their kayaks or rafts!

Apr 10, 2015 01:45 AM