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The Trail of the Coeur D'Alenes

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The Trail of the Coeur D'Alenes

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This article is an itinerary.


The Trail of the Coeur D'Alenes is in North Idaho.

Understand

The Trail of the Coeur D'Alenes is a 72-mile paved bike trail that spans the Idaho panhandle from East to West. It is part of the Rails to Trails project, so it follows the path of an old railroad grade from Idaho's silver mining days. Paving the bike trail helps to contain contamination from unsafe pollutants like lead. It also brings tourism to the North Idaho towns that have struggled since the ore deposits were depleted.

The Trail of the CDA is a luxuriously long, flat, smooth trail that is perfect for riders of all ages and abilities.

If you follow the trail in the same direction as the original railroad, you will see the following destinations in this order:


Prepare

The Trail of the CDA is easy riding, and you may be able to ride farther than you expected. However, a certain level of physical fitness is advisable. You should prepare by taking shorter rides closer to home and building up your strength and stamina. Perhaps take a Saturday to see how far you can ride on a local trail before tiring. Then you will know how far you can plan to ride per day on your trip!

Bring plenty of water, although there are lots of little towns along the way where water can be found easily.

Get in

You can get on this trail from either end: Plummer, on the Western edge, or Mullan, on the Eastern side. There are also numerous trail heads along the way, such as Harrison, Cataldo and Enaville.

Go/Walk/Drive/...

Stay safe

Moose are frequently spotted on this trail. While these animals are not especially aggressive, they are very large and should not be approached. This applies especially to mothers with calves, who will be very protective of their young.

Cell phone reception is spotty at best. If something goes wrong with your bike, you could be stranded along the trail. For this reason, you should bring: innertube patches and/or a spare innertube, a small hand pump, an adjustable wrench, and extra water. You should have a basic knowledge of how to change your bike tube and how to make minor repairs such as re-setting a chain, adjusting brakes, etc.

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