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Idaho State Parks

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USA Parks
Northern Region
Floodwood State Forest
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Floodwood State Forest, located in Idaho, is an enchanting natural haven that mesmerizes visitors with its picturesque beauty. Nestled amidst verdant valleys and towering mountains, the forest boasts a diverse ecosystem that showcases the region's remarkable biodiversity. Forested trails meander through dense groves of towering conifers, showcasing their awe-inspiring grandeur. The tranquil atmosphere allows nature enthusiasts to observe an array of wildlife, from majestic elks to elusive bobcats. Cascading waterfalls, crystal-clear streams, and serene lakes add to the ethereal charm of the forest, providing opportunities for fishing, boating, and connecting with the soothing sounds of nature. Floodwood State Forest invites visitors to unwind, immerse themselves in its splendid scenery, and create unforgettable memories in this natural treasure.
Nature of the Area
Floodwood State Forest is a picturesque natural landscape boasting a diverse ecosystem with abundant forests, meadows, and water bodies. The forest enchants visitors with its serene and tranquil atmosphere as they wander through towering trees and lush vegetation. Within its boundaries, one can find an array of wildlife species, including deer, elk, and various bird species, making it a haven for nature lovers and wildlife enthusiasts alike. Amidst the forest, numerous hiking trails and scenic spots provide opportunities for outdoor activities like hiking, camping, and birdwatching, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the unmatched beauty and serenity of this enchanting destination.
History of the Area
Floodwood State Forest is located in Idaho, near the town of St. Maries. Here is a brief history of the forest:

- The area where Floodwood State Forest now stands was historically inhabited by the Coeur d'Alene Native American tribe. They lived off the land and utilized the abundant natural resources, including the forests, for their sustenance.

- In the early 1900s, the forests in Idaho attracted the attention of the timber industry. Logging companies recognized the value of the timber in the region and began extensive logging operations.

- Floodwood State Forest specifically came into existence in the 1930s, during the Great Depression era, as part of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal program. The federal government aimed to stimulate the economy and provide jobs by establishing programs such as the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC).

- The CCC was responsible for the development of Floodwood State Forest. Young men enrolled in the CCC were employed to carry out various conservation efforts, including reforestation, fire suppression, and development of recreational facilities.

- By 1935, work by the CCC in this region included the construction of a road network, trails, and lookout towers for fire surveillance. They also built numerous recreational facilities such as picnic areas, campgrounds, and a swimming beach along the St. Joe River.

- The primary purpose of Floodwood State Forest, like many state forests, was to sustainably manage and utilize the forest resources while providing recreational opportunities for the public.

- Over the years, stewardship of the forest has been transferred from the federal level to the state of Idaho. Today, Floodwood State Forest is managed by the Idaho Department of Lands, which focuses on sustainable timber harvesting, conservation efforts, and recreational activities.

- Recreational activities in the forest include camping, hiking, fishing, swimming, and wildlife watching. The forest is known for its scenic beauty, diverse wildlife, and abundant vegetation.

Floodwood State Forest has a rich history that dates back to the settlement of the indigenous people and the subsequent logging boom of the early 1900s. The establishment of the forest as a conservation project during the Great Depression highlights the importance of preserving natural resources and providing employment opportunities during challenging times.
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1. Start your journey from the nearest major city, Boise.
2. Take I:84 East towards Mountain Home for approximately 40 miles.
3. Continue on US:20 East for about 100 miles until you reach Fairfield.
4. In Fairfield, turn left onto ID:46 North and continue driving for around 25 miles.
5. Next, take a slight right onto Soldier Road/ID:75 N and follow it for approximately 30 miles to Stanley.
6. Once in Stanley, head north on ID:21/North Bluff Avenue toward Ace of Diamonds Street/Main Street (signs will indicate Challis/Salmon).
7. Continue straight through town as the road becomes Highway 75/Custer County Main St./Salmon River Scenic Byway heading northeast out of town.
8. Follow this scenic highway along Salmon River Canyon into Custer National Forest where Floodwood State Forest is situated.

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Idaho State Parks