The historic mining town of Wallace
(population 784) is nestled beneath Interstate 90, halfway
between two ski and recreation areas in northern Idaho's
beautiful Silver Valley.
The town has long been famous as the
"Silver Capital of the World"
with 1.2 billion ounces of silver produced in
Silver mining is still a big part of our economy,
but today it is carried out in total harmony with a pristine
mountain environment that attracts
enthusiasts from around the world. Some folks come for the
at the two ski areas, or the variety of
or the solitude of alpine lakes,
but all agree, this is the place to play.
And for us lucky ones, this is a
great place to live.
The 76th Lead Creek Derby
Winning Time was 3:22:52
time was 3:58:17 based on the
the linear regression of 15 previous Derby times paired with
maximum snow depths at Lookout Pass as recorded in the
2016/17 Ski Season Commentary.
Why was I off by 35 minutes? There is an easy explanation.
Please check out my
Amazon Associate Store, where you can access
books and outdoor recreation gear tailored to Wallace and the Silver Valley.
Unfortunately, Amazon is "retiring" this feature on
October 27, 2017.
Therefore, I am selecting books from my aStore
and building separate and secure product pages featuring these books
presented in logical categories.
The first five categories are
These tours of points of interest include flights from either
Mullan up I-90 to Lookout Pass on the Montana border,
or from Pinehurst east on I-90 to the Silver Mountain resort. The tours
continue by looking at various runs on the mountain(s) from all sides...
as they were a couple of summers ago.
The Lookout Pass tour also looks down at the eight alpine lakes
that face the ski area from the south.
If you have the
FREE Google Earth program installed,
check out these
LOCAL BICYCLE TOURS.
Notice that taken together, these seven trails make up a
185 mile route that promises to gain worldwide attention
for the variety of scenery and topography that it encompasses.
With that in mind, the
Friends of the Coeur d'Alene Trails presents this
amazing loop to the world as the
300K Bitterroot Loop.
A variety of
other bike routes documented with maps, elevation charts,
and milepost descriptions are available from the Friends website, as well as a
form to request copies of their popular
Recreational Trails of the Idaho
Panhandle map and brochure, now in it's ELEVENTH edition.
They printed 15,000 copies in May 2016 featuring their new Wallace store front
on the back panel, and 28 hospitality and recreation providers within.
Alternate and Original Milwaukee Road
Avery to Plummer: 47 miles from Avery to St. Maries on the multi-use
Milwaukee Road Trail, and 19 miles from Saint Maries to Plummer on country
roads & Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes
The Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes
72 miles on a paved bike path may be riden in three sections:
Plummer to Harrison:
15.3 mile ride downhill to Heyburn State Park on
Lake Coeur d'Alene, across the Chatcolet Bridge and along the lake shore
to Harrison, population 267
Harrison to Enaville:
31.8 miles of flat terrain from the Lake
along the Coeur d'Alene River through the isolated Chain Lakes region to
Enaville on the North Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River
Enaville to Mullan:
24.3 miles gradually climbing through a series
of small towns that make up the famous
Silver Valley, until Wallace,
when the grade increases to a maximum of 3% as the trail follows the
South Fork uphill to Mullan
Pass Ski and Recreation
Areas a dozen Interstate miles away in each direction,
the area around Wallace is a full-season
mountain recreation paradise.
Winter embraces alpine and cross-country
skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling and snowshoeing. Fishing,
and road biking, mountain climbing, hiking and backpacking,
river rafting and kayaking, golf, and
exploration on two or four wheels
occupy outdoor recreation enthusiasts from spring to fall.
Bow, rifle and muzzleloader hunting for deer and elk
is naturally popular each fall. Moose tags are awarded by lottery to
Idaho residents who then have one chance per lifetime to harvest the
huge game. Black bears may be hunted
during the fall and spring, while mountain lions are
fair game September through March.
New in 2012, two zipline tours high above Wallace combine adventure
with spectacular scenery. Open May thru September, these are
the only ziplines on I-90.
(lower trailhead for Route of the Hiawatha)
Take the tour of Burke Canyon and see what
the famous silver mining camps of Frisco and Black Bear look like
today...and what they looked like a hundred years ago.
21 alpine lakes within a 23 mile radius
of Wallace, presented in alphabetical order.
Looking northwest toward Idaho's Silver Valley from Lookout Pass,
I-90, Montana Exit 0.
Click image to open the
Weather page featuring regional weather maps and local
information. This page also shows
webcam views of I-90, Wallace Exit 62W,
looking back toward Wallace. A webcam looking west from I-90 two miles below
Lookout Pass is also shown. The page also explains why many of us feel that
Wallace has the
best four season climate in the world!
By all accounts, our first annual
Historic Wallace Blues Festival
on July 13-14, 2012, was a great success for the town, the performers
and the approximately 2000 Blues Fans who attended.
The most amazing thing is that our little town of 784
individuals pulled this event off in 90 days from concept initiation!
A photographic reprise of
the performances and a
depiction of festival
ambiance tell the story of a great day in Wallace's cultural history.
Click on the variable band photo to go to their place in the reprise.
96 interactive photos
+ Festival Committee photo
If you have followed this website since 1998, you know that it is
my personal effort to bring attention to my adopted hometown.
Although I charge $100 to build a webpage for a Wallace business, I
host that page free forever. Therefore the major way that I receive revenue is
when readers chose to enter amazon.com
through a wallace-id.com widget,
either directly or via my
Wallace Store .
You only need to do this once if you then bookmark a page of your choice.
My tag will be part of that URL, and I will receive 4 to 6% of your purchase.
Thank you for your support, Greg Marsh
The Mayor joined with jubilant delegates to
2004 to proclaim Wallace as the
Probalistic Center of the Universe.
They were inspired by the new scientific principle adopted by the EPA:
"If you can't prove something false, it must be true."
The world famous Sunshine Silver Mine, in operation from 1884 to 2001,
was refurbished by a
Wallace mining company,
and resumed shipping silver ore concentrate in
Mining prosperity, four-season mountain recreation and a sense of humor
were all found at the Center of the Universe.
In October 2009,
Budget Travel magazine and budgettravel.com featured Wallace,
a place that mines its own history,
as #5 in a list of America's Coolest Small Towns.
"Every now and then, you stumble upon a town that's gotten everything
right: great coffee, food with character, shop owners with purpose.
These 10 spots have it all, in perfectly small doses."
The American Planning Association presented Bank Street
with their GREAT PLACES IN AMERICA: STREETS AWARD
at our 2010 Wallace
The APA awarded Bank Street, Wallace,
the honor of being
a great place that "celebrates excellence in planning."
The Association presented Bank Street as #3 in a list of
TEN GREAT PLACES IN AMERICA: STREETS.
The American Planning Association is an independent, not-for-profit educational organization
that provides leadership in the development of vital communities by advocating excellence in community planning,
promoting education and citizen empowerment, and providing the tools and support necessary to meet the challenges of growth and change.
Their reason for choosing our street begins:
"During the course of its 126-year history, Bank Street has brushed up
against fate, and total ruin three times. ..."more details
2011, the town responded to the census
news that our population had decreased from 960 to 784 individuals by hosting
TWO MORE FESTIVALS, bringing the total number of major events for the year to
when we heard that
the famous Blues Festival in Ritzville Washington had been discontinued,
we jumped into the void with only three months lead time. The resulting
Wallace Blues Festival in July
was such a success that we were awarded the
"The Best Blues Event of 2012" by the Inland Empire Blues Society!
The Wallace Swimming Pool was built in 1939 as a WPA project. Full
restoration was carried out by the community from 1999 to 2007 at
a cost of $265,000. The pool is open during the summer from 11 AM to 5 PM,
Monday thru Saturday, and from noon to 5 PM on Sundays.
Kids 12 and under are 50¢; everyone else is $1.
Lap swim: 5 to 6 PM, weekdays, 50¢. Night swim: 6 to 8 PM, $1.
During the summer of 1996, Wallace was the location
of the spectacular volcano disaster movie
Dante's Peak, starring Pierce Brosnan
and Linda Hamilton. Fourteen years after the mayor of
Dante's Peak (Linda Hamilton) accepted
an award for the "Second Best Small Town In America," we accepted an
award from the American Planning Association for the
"(Third) Best Street in America" at the same location: the
intersection of Sixth and Bank Streets. ... A spot also regarded as
the Center of the Universe
However, EVERY year our village of 784 hosts an amazing range of
festivals and special events
that help make this the most unique and fascinating small town
For three days in July 2009, the 10thSlippery
celebration since 1920 was held in concert with an
All-Class Reunion and the town's 125th birthday party.
The graceful Girls of Slippery Gulch and the hilarious Wallace Men's
Culture Club made nine, five-act stage performances in the packed Civic
For the holiday season, you
can order the two hour, 15 minute DVD,
Wallace Idaho's Slippery Gulch, 1920 - 2000,
two different T-shirts and/or the Culture Club poster!
So when you think "stocking stuffer"
in the months ahead, remember your special times in Wallace,
the most festive small town in America.
Twenty-two interactive photos from the 1910 Fire Commemoration and
2010 Huckleberry Festival, August 19 - 21, are presented on a new
"Photos and Winners"
page, along with key references about the Great 1910 Fire,
and the complete list of winners from the
annual 5K Huckleberry fun run.
After a fun day spent
hiking, fishing, rafting, mountain biking, motor biking,
4-wheeling, fishing, hunting,
and/or picture taking somewhere
in the vast North Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River Basin,
visit the ever-expanding and very historic
Pole Museum in Murray Idaho, just 24 miles from Wallace
over Dobson Pass. Murray (pop. ~100) was the central city
of what was the last great gold mining stampede in the Lower 48
(1883-1885), and became the Cradle City of the
Coeur d'Alene Mining District.
This district, now centered in the Silver Valley, has been producing
silver, gold, lead, zinc and copper continuously since 1884.
Have a good meal and a learning experience at the same time.
From 1884 through 2015, the Silver Valley produced
1.243 BILLION OUNCES OF SILVER, as well as gold, lead, zinc, copper and antimony.
In 132 years, the Coeur d'Alene Mining District has produced metals valued
at $7,443,975,000. In 2015 alone, the district produced metals
valued at $139,166,000. Unfortunately, national metal prices have dramatically
decreased while local production costs and repairs have increased, leading
once again to a depressed, but improving, Silver Valley metals market.
2015 silver production was up 25% from 2013, but 8% less than 2014.
While the table does not show gold, copper and antimony
production, their value each year is reflected under Total.
Remarkedly, 8000 Troy ounces of GOLD were produced in 2015.
This information is provided by the Wallace District Mining Museum.
Be sure to visit them when you are next in town!
Total thru 2015
If you have the
FREE Google Earth program installed,
you may visualize travel from Wallace over Dobson Pass to the
North Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River and then up Placer Creek to Murray:
The presentation includes two dozen placemarks and a "hang gliders'"
tour of the route.
You may now also visualize travel from Wallace up Burke Canyon past the
lost mining towns of Gem, Frisco, Black Bear, Yellow Dog, Cornwall,
Mace and Burke, to finally circle above the Glidden Lakes on the Montana
One Outstanding Weekend in May 2012
The 27th Annual Northern Pacific Railroad
Depot Museum Festival and Classic Car Show on May 12, 2012, was very well attended
with over 300 vehicles on display in historic downtown Wallace.
See photos, video and the winners.
Dates indicate when the content or structure of a page
This Wallace HOMEPAGE was last modified on
August 12, 2017.
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is an 18 year work in progress, from which I
receive only trivial financial rewards. If you have found my efforts useful
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Or you may simply make a direct contribution to my ongoing effort to
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Thank you for your support. Greg Marsh, Ph.D.
Marsh Scientific Services
Wallace is at the center of
a universe filled with mountain recreation and Old West history
that you will want to visit more than once.
Please tell me what you would like to see on this and other pages at my
Historic Wallace Idaho webworks.
Northern Idaho's Silver Valley
Four Season Mountain Recreation Paradise:
two ski resorts, two long bike trails, a dozen
alpine lakes, bountiful wildlife and backcountry
solitude in harmony with 133 years of mining history
and legend silver-valley.com
homepage updated January 18, 2017