Sunday, October 7, 2012

McKinnick Trail - Sandpoint, Idaho

Inspiration has finally hit me upside the head with nature's version of a 2 by 4! We have moved to the beautiful town of Sandpoint, Idaho. North Idaho is a gem in many ways, especially for those that have a thirst for the outdoors. The myriad of trail running options has motivated me to begin running more and explore the area before the snows begin to hit in earnest.

So far, one of my favorite places to run is McKinnick Trail, located just outside of the Sandpoint city limits near Schweitzer Mountain. This is a 3.5 mile trail (one-way) that "switchbacks" through 160 acres of gigantic rock outcroppings, grassy meadows, and  tall old growth timber There are views of Lake Pend Oreille, Sandpoint, and the Cabinet Mountains. The top boasts an elevation of 4300' for a total elevation gain of 2150'. This is a great hike, trail-run, or snow-shoe in the winter. However, I plan to run it as long as possible. I am guessing I will finally need to purchase some spikes for my running shoes.

View of Lake Pend Oreille and Sandpoint

My German Shorthair Pointer finishing our run together

Directions: From Sandpoint, take Hwy. 95 north 1.3 miles to Schweitzer Mountain Road; turn left and go 0.5 miles; turn right at the T junction and go 0.8 miles; turn left (at Schweitzer Sign) and go 0.5 miles to Woodland Drive; turn left and go 0.7 miles. The trailhead parking area is located on the right. There is also an outhouse there.