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Motor Home Guide to Idaho Outdoors

Idaho is the "Gem State," and motor home enthusiasts love it. What makes Idaho so wonderful? It has some of the best unspoiled natural beauty in the United States. It can also boast that it's one of the most scenically diverse states in the union, despite its small size.

Here are a few facts about Idaho that can help you decide if you want to visit.

- Idaho is the most forested of all the Rocky Mountain States, with nearly half of its land covered in tall, whispering pines.

- More than half of the land in the state is federally protected, which means that it's more than half national park.

- It is also one of the wettest of the Rocky Mountain States, with thousands of lakes, rivers and streams winding through its forested mountain terrain. That also means some of the best fishing in the Rockies!

You can thank the massive ice-age glaciers for the beauty of northern Idaho. When they melted, they left behind all the lakes, rivers and reservoirs that cut their way through the lush evergreen forests. Up in the north, where along the Montana border, are the Idaho side of the Bitterroot Mountains, a favorite mountain range of campers, hikers and fisherman all over the country.

This is also the area where the famous French expedition crossed on its way to see exploring the Louisiana Purchase. The area is rich with history and culture. You can learn about the early journeys of explorers to the great northwest, and the Nez Perce tribe that still lives there and practices its traditional culture to this day.

In the central part of the state, you will find historical highways that cross the great rivers including the Salmon River, Little Lost River and Silver Creek. In the northeast, every highway is a scenic drive, and you'll want to make sure you take your time and make lots of stops along the way. Bring plenty of film!

You can also see Craters of the Moon National Monument, a truly unearthly terrain of lava rocks, sagebrush and cinder cones. Craters of the Moon are so named because of its lunar landscape and eerie otherworldliness. It is definitely a place you'll want to see along the way.

In southern Idaho, the lush forest begins to give way to high desert. The Snake River winds through the high country, leaving an arid valley full of pretty desert scenery and lots of great fishing spots.

Anywhere you stop along the way, you'll find a decent motor home park. Idaho is known all over the RV world as the place to go, and there are great accommodations everywhere. Here are a few of the local RV parks that get the best customer satisfaction ratings.

Hi Valley RV Park - Boise

Open all year round, Hi Valley RV Park is conveniently located just five minutes from downtown Boise. It's a perfect spot the mixes the city conveniences and the wilds of the mountains. They also have all kinds of information about things to do all over the state. You can contact them by phone or email for more information.

Bambi RV Park - Coeur d'Alene

If you're taking in Idaho's beautiful forested north, Bambi is a great place to stay. It is a small and friendly mom-and-pop RV park with 21 spaces and full hook-ups. Located in Coeur d'Alene, it puts you close to grocery stores, restaurants and other city entertainments. They have a toll-free you can call for more information.

Waters Edge RV Resort

For more remote lodging along the beautiful Payette River, check out Waters Edge. You can walk right off your campsite and find wonderful hiking, fishing and other activities. They also offer sailing, horseback riding, and they have a wonderful hot springs nearby. You can contact them by phone or e-mail for additional information.

Idaho is an RVer's paradise. Go there yourself and you'll see why everybody's always talking about "The Gem of the Mountains."

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