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DESCRIPTION and RIDING INFORMATION:
Contact IEPCO Call or email IEPCO for
more information about fees or closures.
Inland Empire Paper Company has about
of very scenic, mountainous, PRIME dual
sport timberland in WA and ID. They allow road access only – "officially" they
allow NO riding off established, maintained timber roads. The scenery is simply
stunning and the roads are twisty and steep.
The riding rules are a
little hazy. Officially the rule book says that you are supposed to stay on
“maintained” roads. Since many of these roads appear maintained and then
deteriorate rapidly into a maze of overgrown doubletrack, it’s hard to say
exactly what is maintained and what is not. In talking to a large number of different
officials at IEPCO and Quality Assurance (which administers public access), I
understand that the intent is to stop unauthorized side trail use, which causes
heavy erosion and vegetation damage. The gates and dirt berms at the far end of
many roads are there to stop Jeeps and full sized 4x4s – it is ok for ATVs and
motorcycles to go over or bypass them if you can do so safely AND if there are
no “Keep Out” or “Private Property” signs posted. Any berms adjacent to State
Park land should not be crossed – motorized vehicles are not allowed on most of
the roads in the Park. So all those old overgrown forest roads are fair game if
you ride sensibly and stay on the old grades. Please do NOT abuse this
These roads are for the
most part gravel or smooth packed dirt, but many have mud, ruts and lots of
waterbars (jumps) that make for a very fun ride. Some of the main roads have recently been "improved"
with a thick layer of very round, very large river rock, which makes for
treacherous two-wheeling. Be very careful when riding these slippery main roads.
IEPCO requires that EACH vehicle carries a shovel and fire extinguisher. (As a
side note, they also require you to carry a bucket if you are stupid enough to
ride without a helmet.... the helmet will serve dual duty. Idaho has no helmet
law.) This is a real pain, esp for those with families and kids, but I think
it's a very small price to pay to ride these lands. I carry a compact folding
camp shovel (in a Wolfman Enduro tank bag.) A small Kidde kitchen-sized fire
bottle rides in my backpack. Cost was less than $20 for both items at WalMart.
Permits vary from $5 for a single individual day pass to $45 for an annual
family pass. A family pass is good for husband and wife and two kids for the
calendar year, which typically means riding from early June through snow
closure, but it also gives you winter access by ski or snowmobile. Additional
kids under 14 don't need a permit when accompanied by a parent.
You are "officially" allowed entry only through designated, manned gates – all other IEPCO
gates are NOT to be used for recreational entry. I do have verbal assurances
that it is ok to exit around any of these closed gates if you are not
trespassing. I have also been told that it is ok to RE-enter any of these
secondary gates after you have "officially" entered through one of the main
gates. The idea here is that they want to know who is riding on their land on
any given day. A map showing access points is given out along with a brochure
(rules book) when you get a permit. One gate is located just east of Mt Spokane.
Two more are located north of I-90 (Thompson Creek and Rathdrum) and the final
two are located at the Twin Lakes/ Spirit lake areas of Idaho. I got my annual
permit at White's Outdoor in Spokane – there are several other local vendors. If
you need specifics let me know or contact IEPCO.
UPDATE 09-11-06: There must be additional open
gate(s) that are not shown on the official IEPCO map. I keep encountering lots
of full-sized vehicles on Larch Mountain, due north of Spirit Lake, and so far
the only way I have found to get up there is via an overgrown ATV trail. If
anyone can tell me where these vehicles are entering, PLEASE LET ME KNOW.
Vehicles do not have to be street legal, but if not, you need a current ORV
sticker for the particular state you are riding in (WA and/ or ID) since the
roads often cross pockets of state or private land. Spark arrested mufflers are
mandatory and just common sense. Speed limit is officially 25 mph, just like for
the National Forest Service, and you will encounter oncoming traffic
unexpectedly, so no racing please. I have often seen official white IEPCO pickup
trucks or privately owned Quality Services enforcement vehicles patrolling, and
they WILL stop you to look at your permit and say hello. They have always been
very friendly and concerned that you are having a good time and staying safe. If
they don't like the way you are riding they can revoke your access rights on the
spot and permanently. Be SURE to bring along the original pink permit
form. No photocopies are allowed, but the original can be laminated for weather
NO overnight camping. NO recreational shooting!!!! Hunting is ok in season, and
you see LOTS of hunting ATVs in the fall. Parking is available along the roads
near the access points.
Having ridden the land further north I STRONGLY recommend that you camp at
Spirit Lake at the Silver Beach Resort and then access through the east side of
the area. It is very scenic and has fewer frustrating dead-ends than the land
near Rathdrum and Thompson Creek in the south.
I hope others will take advantage of this great private land, and respect the
rules of the property owners, please! They can lock the gates any time if they
get ticked off by too many rule-breakers, and that would be a shame.
My latest IEPCO TRACKS MAP for 09/11/06.
Updated regularly during the riding season!
IEPCO Tracks and Waypoints 09-11-06:
Latest Tracks and Waypoints GPS DATA (updated
IEPCO Page Updated
April 18, 2008
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