Ferry County Rail Trail makes for a great bike ride, or walk around the lake

Taylor Newquist
Sports Editor

Winding out from the nearby mining-town of Republic, over Curlew Lake and clear toward the Canadian Boarder, the Ferry County Rail Trail is a scenic passage for bikers.
The trail totals 28 miles of an abandoned railway, with 5.5-miles at Curlew Lake and 3.1-miles in Curlew covered with a fine-crushed stone surface. A 770-foot bridge, which is a restored Great Northern Railway trestle, crosses over the lake for pristine views. The original trestle was burned in 1980 and was reconstructed shortly after. Added renovations were added in 2014 by the county.
The first access point to the trail is at the San Poil Mill site, just outside of Republic to the east along Highway 20. There are a number of other access points from there. If you want to start at Curlew Lake, go near the Blacks Beach Resort at 80 Old Blacks Beach Road.
Plenty of wildlife is viewable near the waterways along the trail.
Be prepared to bring sunscreen or sunhats, as much of the trail is unshaded and in direct sunlight.
The Ferry County Rail Trail Partners group started the project to construct the trail in 2007, earning state and federal bicycle pedestrian grants, gaining funds upwards of a $1 million.
The group is currently seeking an August fundraising goal of $10,000 to install three permanent bridge decks and connect the trail. In 2018 there was a large amount of flooding that resulted in major washouts, closing some segments.
“As soon as we set the bridge decks we can focus on the planned improvements,” FCRTP vice president Keith Bell said in a press release. “First we need to fix the washouts and that needs to happen immediately.”
Donations to the rail trail and more information can be made at ferrycountyrailtrail.com.