Description - *Note: All information presented is non-seasonal, as per the wishes of the State of Idaho.
The Coeur d’Alene Indians were the first inhabitants of the area now known as Heyburn State Park. It was an ideal place for an encampment. Then, as today, the lakes provided an abundance of fish, the marsh areas had plentiful waterfowl and the heavily timbered slopes and open meadows were ideal habitat for deer, bear and upland birds.
With the coming of settlers, Lake Coeur d’Alene began to see a variety of uses. Steamboats frequented the south end of the lake bringing settlers, prospectors and loggers to the St. Joe River Valley. Travel and commerce increased so much that Lake Coeur d’Alene was nicknamed the “Little Lake Erie of the West.”
Heyburn State Park was created from the Coeur d’Alene Indian Reservation by an act of Congress, on April 20, 1908. The deed, signed by President William Howard Taft, granted 5,505 acres of land and 2,333 acres of water to the State. The park was named in honor of U.S. Senator W.B. Heyburn of Idaho.
Heyburn is the oldest state park in the Pacific Northwest. Much of the early construction was performed by Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Camp SP-1. Starting in 1934, Camp SP-1 members built roads, trails, bridges, campgrounds, picnic areas, picnic shelters and the Rocky Point Lodge (now the Rocky Point Interpretive Center). Today, many of these facilities are still in use—the CCC's proud legacy.
- The park has 132 sites in three campgrounds: Reservations are recommended at Hawley’s Landing and Chatcolet campgrounds. Benewah campground is first come-first served. Hook up sites and showers are available at Hawley’s Landing and Benewah. Tent sites and flush toilets only are available at Chatcolet.
Heyburn State Park has two cabins that were former summer homes. Each has a furnished kitchen, furniture, etc. Visitors need to provide their own linens. The cabins rent for $85 a night. Call the park for reservations and more information, 208-686-1308.
The Rocky Point Interpretive Center features displays and information from the Civilian Conservation Corps days, the Coeur d'Alene Tribe, local history and wildlife.
You can take a leisurely cruise on the lakes in Heyburn State Park aboard the cruise boat Idaho. Join us for regularly scheduled cruises, or charter the boat for your wedding, reunion, meeting or party. Call Heyburn State Park for details, 208-686-4030.
Recreation - Fish for pike, bass, or pan fish in the lakes. Bird watching is terrific at Heyburn, with osprey and blue heron as common as sparrows back home. Boating, water skiing, sailing and canoeing are also popular pursuits. Trails for hikers or horseback riders are shaded by 400-year-old ponderosa pines. The Rocky Point Marina offers a public boat ramp, store, fuel dock, restroom and parking.
The Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes, a 72 mile paved bike trail, goes right through Heyburn State Park. You can bike the 3100 foot bridge/trestle across the St Joe River to the other side of Lake Coeur d’Alene. The gentle grade is easy for just about anyone. Bicycle rentals for adults and children are available at the park headquarters.
Climate - The climate in Idaho varies with the elevation. The bottom of Hell's Canyon, Boise and other locations at low elevations receive hot summer weather. Temperatures at these elevations often reach 90 degrees or more during the summer months. At the same time the mountains will get mild temperatures with cool nights.
Winters are just as extreme with the mountains experiencing extreme conditions and temperatures. An average of 500 inches of snow falls on the Idaho highlands. Temperatures are known to dip below zero degrees F on many winter nights. The lower elevations enjoy a more mild winter season with less precipitation than the mountains. The sun is a constant throughout the year. Be sure to wear sunscreen and layered clothing in Idaho's unpredictable weather.
Near Plummer on State Highway 5