Albeni Falls Dam And Lake Pend Oreille

Quick Facts

Albeni Falls Dam And Lake Pend Oreille

Idaho

(208) 437-3133

Map Directions

Things To Do

Overview

Albeni Falls Dam sits on the Pend Oreille River. Behind the dam, the waters of the Pend Oreille stretch 65 miles through a glacially carved valley that separates three mountain ranges. Rimed by mountains that rise 6,500 feet, Lake Pend Oreille is one of the largest and deepest natural lakes in the western United States. In some areas, it plunges to a depth of 1,237 feet. Forests and mountains, clear water, sandy beaches and excellent trout fishing are a few of the many attractions of this large lake.

Prior to construction of Albeni Falls Dam, the Pend Oreille River flowed through several channels between small islands and rock outcroppings (see picture to the left). The natural falls were known as Albeni Falls (and is the site of today's dam). The islands, however, impeded the spring runoff from melting mountain snows which would cause the lake to raise and flood property along the river and around Lake Pend Oreille. It wasn't until mid to late summer when the lake would naturally lower to its minimum level. Albeni Falls became Albeni Falls Dam in 1955. The region had experienced an increased need for water storage and power production to support the growing shipbuilding and aluminum industries downriver. To meet these growing needs, Congress authorized the dam in 1950 and construction began at the falls in 1951. By 1952 the dam was operational for flood control. With the increased channel capacity, spring flood levels were significantly reduced on the lake. Residents around Lake Pend Oreille now enjoy the benefits of the dam as it stabilizes the water level. Recreationists enjoy the use of the lake year-round.

Map of Albeni Falls Dam & Lake Pend Oreille

Latitude, Longitude: 48.256684, -116.324616

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Activities

  • Boating

    Boat ramp.

  • Bicycling

    Great trails nearby for biking and hiking.

  • Auto/Motorcycle

    Tour the dam in your car or on your motorcycle.

  • Camping

    Electric, non-electric, and pull-through sites surround the lake.

  • Fishing

    Great fishing on the lake.

  • Hiking

    Great trails nearby for biking and hiking.

  • Historic Sites

    Two miles east of the Washington/Idaho border on US Highway 2, the Albeni Falls Visitor Center is the place to start your visit to the area. Informational brochures are available, or talk to a ranger for ideas on places to visit and things to see. Here you can overlook Albeni Falls Dam, enjoy your lunch, stroll through the visitor center exhibits, and take a tour of the dam. Drinking water and restrooms are available.

  • Hunting

    Hunting is allowed in designated areas.

  • Picnicking

    There are many great spots for picnicking in the area.

  • Water Sports

    Fishing, swimming, and boating.

  • Winter Sports

    Cross country skiing and snowmobiling (in designated areas).

Directions

Driving

From Spokane, WA, 50 mi NE on US 2.

Phone Numbers

Primary

(208) 437-3133

Links