Northern Idaho

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by sage, Jun 15, 2004.

  1. sage

    sage On a City lot for now

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    Hi to all, I mostly read and lurk but I have a question for people around Sandpoint and Priest River, ID.

    I know that meth is a problem everywhere and I was wondering how it was in Northern Idaho? I have been reading the local papers around that area and there are a few stories about busting meth labs, so how much of a problem is it there?

    We have our house for sale and plan on moving there when it sells.

    Any info would be very helpful.


    Thanks, sage
     
  2. bare

    bare Head Muderator

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    Oh man, it's a HUGE problem here. Personally, I think every other house is a meth lab. Course, what else is there to do. In the two months without snow, the dang skeeters are so big ya don't dare go outside. At least that's what we tell anyone interested in moving here.

    In reality it's here, as I imagine everywhere else, including Wyoming. Have I ever seen a meth addict? Probably. Have I ever seen a meth lab first hand? No. Do I think it's a problem? No.
     

  3. sage

    sage On a City lot for now

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    Thank you for the response bare.

    Let me tell you about the skeeters here!!! They are very small and hard to see, they attack by the millions!! :eek: You step out side and they eat you before you evan realize they are there!! :eek:

    So give me ones I can see and I'll be happy!! That way I can swat they easier!! :haha: :haha:

    Thanks again, sage

    PS two months without snow will be wonderful, 'cause you know it snows all year long here!! :haha:
     
  4. bare

    bare Head Muderator

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    Yeah right, you must think I wuz born yesterday. I know fer a fact that Wyoming doesn't have skeeters ner snow either, the dang wind BLOWS too hard for either one.
     
  5. sage

    sage On a City lot for now

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    :haha: :haha:

    That just goes to show you that the misconceptions that people believe!!!

    Wind??? What's wind? I have no idea what your talking about! The wind NEVER blowes here!!!!!!! :haha: :haha: :haha:




    sage
     
  6. Idahofarmergal

    Idahofarmergal Well-Known Member

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    Bare, you naughty boy! We want more homesteading types here, don't we? We need to keep even with all the new trophy home builders and $40,000 SUV drivers who suck up our resources, drive up prices, and pay us minimum wage. You know, the ones who think that the knapweed that is taking over their pasture for their $10,000 horse is a pretty wildflower?

    Sage, there are two things about this area that might put you off. Bare mentioned the weather, and he really wasn't exagerating much. We don't see much of the sun for 10 months out of the year, and the temperatures are quite cool except for July and August. Raising meat here is easy, but raising a garden is challenging. I had a very light frost two nights ago, and I'm in a warm spot!

    Sunset magazine published a very favorable article about Sandpoint last winter, and now we are in the midst of a real estate boom that will change the feel of this area. The folks who are moving here from California will change it to be more like California. Already the amount of new building permits issued this year is more than double last year, and they are mostly building homes that no local can afford. Trophy homes are popping up everywhere, along with "no trespassing" and "no hunting" signs. Every Joe Blow who thinks he can swing a hammer is building, building, building, and the land is being subdivided at an alarming rate. Property values are going up way too fast, and the traffic is more snarled than ever. This is mostly happening in the Sandpoint area. You might want to concentrate on the Priest River area, as it is more affordable and not growing anywhere near as quickly.
    Good luck to you. It is lovely here.
     
  7. Joy in Eastern WA

    Joy in Eastern WA Well-Known Member

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    The Coeur d'Alene area and just south of there is very nice for homesteading. Not as much development happening in the St. Maries area which is just south of CDA.
     
  8. ok, this is my first post here as a new member.

    We (my hubby and me) just bought some property in NE Washington State, Kettle Falls. We were first looking at Northern Idaho, Priest River Area, but I am glad we didnt. Did not know about Meth Labs.
     
  9. StinkerBell

    StinkerBell Well-Known Member

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    btw. my name is stinkerbell, and the above post is mine, forgot to sign in.
     
  10. Hi to all that responded and thank you. :)

    Idahofarmgal, gardening there can't be more difficult there than it is here! Atleast there is soil there, all I have is sand, pure sand! And it's alkaline at that as is our water! Our summers are pretty hot and dry, you have to water twice and three times a day and it soaks in so fast that 30 min later you can't tell you watered! Then there is the wind, in the winter it blows all the snow away (which has no moisture in it anyway) and in the summer it sucks all the moisture out of everything! I have brought in top soil twice and compost several times and the sand works up and the soil and compost disapears! :eek: :eek: The wind and sun dries out everything so much that compost won't compost! :waa: :waa:
    So we are ready to go somewhere that is a little cooler and wetter!! :haha: :haha:

    Thanks again for the responses,
    sage
     
  11. sage

    sage On a City lot for now

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    It logged me out.

    That was me, sage in the above post. :eek:
     
  12. This has me as 'unregistered' but I am in actuality Lisa from North Idaho. I've been away for awhile and have been purusing the previous posts and came across this one so thought I'd reply.

    We recently moved from NOrth Idaho to central NY. We spent about 6 1/2 years in North Idaho, first settling in the area between Sandpoint and Bonners Ferry and then buying our own 20 acres north of Bonners Ferry. My daughter attended both Sandpoint and Bonners Ferry schools and I would not recommend them. The local kids make it very difficult (at least at the jr.high/high school level) for 'outsider' kids to fit in and the education the kids receive is, IMHO, extremely lacking.

    As mentioned above, we found the climate to be harsh no matter what time of year; summers were hot and extremely dry (sometimes with no rain for 2 months and 95+ heat), and winters which were pretty intense.

    As far as meth/drugs, we unfortunately got a first-hand view of that. Yes, there are many back road meth labs. Both the property we rented and the property we bought had what we felt were probably meth labs on the road. The smell when you drive/walk by will let you know for sure! Also unfortunately, our DD became involved with this drug while we lived there and we soon found out that many of the local teenagers/ young adults were addicted as well. When we questioned why this was, most told us that 'there's nothing else here.' which is basically true.

    In summation, it is a place of incredible beauty and a part of us will miss it always. However, it is also a land of extremes: in climate, in ppl, in wealth, etc.
     
  13. Blu3duk

    Blu3duk Well-Known Member

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    I lived near Naples for 25 years, moved aay to the cultural hub of the universe in 1988, I knew most of the druggies back then, and meth was just begininng to come there then..... since moving here i have known quite a few of the idiots who pervert themselves with drugs [my sister in law did 2 years in state prison and has 10 years paroll for meth] I know 3 meth cookers personally and would not let them near me on a bet either any more.... only 2 have done time as of yet. Meth use has toned down the past couple years, and yet it picks up once in awhile.....

    As far as labs themselves go, every now and again they have to bust a lab to get more dollars for the sherriff department and the hazmat team...... a million dollars only goes so far to outfit a swat team.

    William

    have hammer will travel
     
  14. boxwoods

    boxwoods Well-Known Member

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    Hey Lisa from North Idaho that moved to central, ny

    How do you like it here? And what part of Central NY?
     
  15. bare

    bare Head Muderator

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    Heyyy Bill, some of us druggies are still here... 'Course these days it's more likely asprin.

    While I was the first to knock N. Idaho, it was obviously (I hope) in jest. Now with Lisa bad-mouthing my county, I gotta respond.

    I would imagine that more than half of the junior and senior highschool kids are newcomers themselves, so I would think that if any particular individual has trouble fitting in, there may be another reason for it. One thing you quickly find here is that there are darn few natives.

    I don't know when you left Lisa, but you are probably aware that the new 20 million highschool in Bonners Ferry is nearing completion. It's construction was hard won, and somewhat divides the community. Idaho is the only state that gives no help to individual school districts in construction funding, leaving it strictly to the local community to build new schools. In counties like Boundary and Bonner, where 80% of the land base is federally owned, it makes it very hard to pay for. Property taxes is how it's done, leaving those with larger land holdings paying a disproportionate amount to fund the new building.

    Since it's a small community, I know many of the teachers first hand. I belive that I would have to look far and wide to find educators that care more for their students.

    I don't know what the demographics are, but it seems to me that there are way more college educated people in this area than others I've been in.

    My kids are always telling me that there's nothing to do here too. That is, when they are around. As I type, two are at the nearby lake, supposedly fishing (but I know they'll return at dark with no fish and soaking wet). One is camped out six miles up the road with friends in huckleberry camp, while another is sitting here reading this over my shoulder, saying, "you just don't get it"! I do get it actually. There isn't a lot of "town stuff" to do in Bonners Ferry. Sandpoint at least has a city beach. My kids haven't lacked much in the activity department in my book though and I can attest to it by showing you the milage on my vehicles. Even though all ours are homeschooled, they are active in sports, music, 4H, and too many other things to think about. Around here Friday night excitement is hanging out at the 24 hour Chevron station on the south end of town. By the same token, there ain't a whole lot for adults to do either unless you like the bar scene or bowling or the movie.

    I don't get around all that much anymore, but it was the same for me growing up in Montana, and I imagine that it's the same in any non-metro area.

    I also doubt the drug situation here is any different from anywhere else. Yup, it's available, but it was available and I partook of it 40 years ago in rural Montana too. In fact, I think drug use is probably less pervasive than it was when I was a kid. Part of the reason is that as parents, we are more aware of the problem than mine were. I know the signs of drug use first hand. It may go by different names these days, but it's the same dang stuff essentially that I used as a teen and young adult.

    Lisa even picked on the climate! We affectionately call this area the banana belt because of our relatively mild weather. It has NEVER been 95 for two months at a time here. Most folks don't have air conditioning in either their homes or vehicles. There's usually a two week period every summer, when I think about maybe purchasing an air conditioner but the by then I'm too dang hot to be bothered with the installation and just jump in the lake instead. For example, the last couple weeks the temp has reached into the 90's but it cools down to the 50's and 60's at night and there is zero humidity. It does get dry most summers, which is really scarey since 99% of the area is forested. Temps in the winter seldom dip below zero degrees although there have been extremes.

    Now that I've typed all this, I'm wondering in the back of my mind if Lisa really doesn't still live here and is just trying to keep it for herself!
     
  16. Well Hello to all in Idaho!
    We just got back from finding our new homestead! (In Idaho I might add)
    We will be in Athol on 5 acres.
    In our search last week the weather was beautiful! Only one day rainy and cloudy, really very nice. Out of 13 places we looked at (from Priest River to Coeur d'Alene) there was only 3 meth houses, (of course we rejected those without going to look at them). Meet one of our new neighbors, seems like very nice people.
    It will be a joy to be able to plant and watch things grow instead of watching them dry out and die! We are looking forward to that very much! :D


    sage
     
  17. bare

    bare Head Muderator

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    Great, now you can be the butt of all jokes. Good luck!
     
  18. Joy in Eastern WA

    Joy in Eastern WA Well-Known Member

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    Sage, congrats on moving to the Inland NW!!! You will enjoy living up here, with the four pleasant seasons, snow and water skiing, hiking, many national parks within a days drive, fine fishing and hunting, clean towns and cities, lots of things to enjoy all year long!

    We moved up to the Spokane area eight years ago from back east and will NEVER move back to the place of my youth. This region is home until I die.

    Please keep us posted on your journey up this way!
     
  19. StinkerBell

    StinkerBell Well-Known Member

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    We intially looked at that area (Priest RIver, Sandpoint and up in Bonners) but decided not too.

    We ended up buying somme land up in Kettle Falls (about 100 miles North of Spokane).

    Good Luck.
     
  20. Idahofarmergal

    Idahofarmergal Well-Known Member

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    Hey, welcome Sage! Athol is a nice central location. I absolutely love Farragut State Park. You'll probably end up spending lots of time there. I did when I lived in Careywood, just a couple of miles up the road from Athol. And you are probably over the Rathdrum aquafer there and so have plenty of water. Nice.

    One thing about Athol, it is a frost pocket like Careywood. That's why I moved to Sagle last year. Come and see me at the Farmer's Market in Hayden next spring when you are getting ready to plant. I've been selling veggie and herb plants there for 7 years, and have lots of regular customers in Athol. I know what will do best for you there. I specialize in quick maturing varieties. We also have another plant seller/farmer and tomato breeder at the market who lived in Athol until this year. He can help stear you in the right direction, too. We love helping people grow great gardens successfully. My farm name is Barklee Farms. I also have a CSA in both Sandpoint and Couer d'Alene. You can pm me if you want any local gardening advice.

    Just so you know what is possible here, this week my customers are getting summer squash, cherry tomatoes, basil, cucumbers, broccoli, kohlrabi, snap peas, potatoes, walla walla onions, carrots, sweet peppers, and radishes in their bins. In a couple of weeks I'll have big tomatoes, eggplant, melons, watermelon, sweet corn, and green beans. I grew all of these in Careywood, too, but it was more challenging. So don't let any neighbors discourage you. Plenty of locals think you can't grow some of that stuff here. You can, it just takes extra work and some tricks.

    Good luck to you, and welcome!