National Forest Foundation

Unforgettable Experiences: Route of the Hiawatha

The National Forest System, Adventures

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National Forest: Idaho Panhandle National Forests

Nearest major town or city: Wallace, Idaho

Once a Milwaukee Railroad train route from Chicago to West Coast markets, the Route of the Hiawatha trail stretches 15 miles through the Bitterroot Mountains between Idaho and Montana. The route features nine tunnels and more than seven high steel trestle bridges up to 230 feet high for magnificent views of the surrounding mountain range.

The highlight of the Route of the Hiawatha for many visitors is the St. Paul Pass Tunnel, a 1.66-mile dark tunnel that burrows under the state line. It took 750 workers two and a half years to complete in the early 1900s. Bike lights are required and you might want to take your sunglasses off too.

Less-experienced bikers should have no fears about the difficulty of the trail because, surprise, it’s mostly downhill. Better yet, there are shuttles at the end of the route that will bring you and your bikes back to the top with COVID-19 sanitary and social distancing precautions.

Learn more and plan your visit: https://www.fs.usda.gov/recare...


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