About Sandpoint, Idaho
Sandpoint, at an elevation just over 2,000 feet serves as the county seat of Bonner County (population 35,226 in 1999) whose economy, for more than a century, depended in large part on the timber industry. (Read more about Sandpoint's Economy.)
Beginning in the late 1980s, summer and winter tourism began to grow rapidly in response to a growing awareness of the region's pleasant four-season climate which is markedly more moderate than weather typically found to the east of the Rocky Mountains. With an annual average rainfall of 33.5 inches and annual snowfall of 71.7 inches, residents and tourists experience few sub-zero days each winter while summer days rarely exceed 90-degree temperatures. The average year-round temperature is 47 degrees and there are some 125 frost-free days each year. Humidity is comparatively low, nights generally cool and summertime typically offers weeks of consecutive clear and sunny days much to the delight of boating, fishing, swimming, water skiing and hiking enthusiasts. (Read more about Sandpoint Weather.)
Sandpoint, Idaho history dates back to circa 1880 when Robert Weeks opened a general store in Pend Oreille – a small settlement founded to the east of the current site of Sandpoint along the shores of Lake Pend Oreille.
Before the establishment of the general store the first white man known to travel to the Sandpoint area was famed explorer David Thompson who with his partner "Big Finan" McDonald established the first trading post on Lake Pend Oreille in 1809. The settled area grew slowly in population until the construction of the Great Northern Railroad in 1892 when railroad agent L.D. Farmin filed the original town site and laid out Sandpoint in 1898. (Read more about Sandpoint's History.)