Have you ever noticed what’s on the floor of River Park Square right before you get on the escalator? That’s right! Its a map of the Inland Northwest Lakes. The Inland Northwest is known for its high density of lakes. Are you looking for a spot to cool off and have fun in the water around Spokane? You have lots of options! You can find the best spots for fishing, swimming or boating using our handy Inland Northwest lakes guide.
Just 15 Miles north of Spokane off of the Newport Hwy, Bear lake is a great place to spend the day with your family. Complete with a swimming beach, hiking trails, BBQ areas, and play equipment, Bear Lake is great for all ages. One thing that makes Bear Lake unique, is the special regulations that limit fishing on this lake to youth. Because of this, Bear Lake is an ideal spot to take your kids on a fishing outing.
If you’ve been to Newport, Washington, you’ve probably driven through Diamond Lake (the town) and caught glimpses of the sparkling waters beyond the private residences of the small community. This hidden lake boasts nearly 7 miles of shoreline and amazing trout fishing opportunities. The lake is stocked with 12,500 trout annually. While there isn’t a public beach, you can access the lake via the public boat launch and fish or swim from your boat.
Directly north of Loon Lake, Deer Lake is a moderately large lake with camping and resorts along the shoreline. You can access the lake via the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) Boat Launch or at the resorts (day use or multi-day use fees may apply). The lake provides lots of opportunities for boating, kayaking, fishing, swimming and more. Because of all the options, Deer Lake is a great spot to spend a weekend. Check out the Deer Lake resort campgrounds for a weekend family vacation.
Eloika Lake, approximately 7 miles north of Chattaroy, offers excellent year round fishing. You can get to the lake via Jerry’s Landing Resort or the WDFW boat launch. In addition to being a great fishing spot, Eloika Lake is a great for paddling and spotting wildlife.
This little gem, hidden in the Selkirk mountains near Newport, is ideal for a day trip. During the summer, you can park at the boat launch and spend the day kayaking or fishing. Or, if you’d prefer to enjoy the beauty of the lake from the shoreline, hike the 10 mile out and back trail around the shoreline. Bead lake is spectacular during all seasons, however, the public boat launch is closed during the winter. So, if you want to access the lake during the off season, expect an extra 2 mile hike in.
Commonly referred to as Long Lake, Lake Spokane is a 25 mile reservoir between 9-mile dam and Long Lake Dam. Because of the lake’s size, it is ideal for all kinds of boating and water sports. Lake Spokane is another great destination for a weekend camping trip. The best way to get to Lake Spokane is via the Riverside State Park Boat Launch ($5) which also has campsites nearby, Nine Mile Resort ($6), or Long Lake Campground.
About half an hour from North Spokane, Loon Lake offers more than 1,000 acres of water for water-skiing, fishing, boating and more. Access the lake via the WDFW boat launch and 2 resorts. Loon Lake also offers some great camping spots for a family vacation or ‘staycation’ close to home.
Bonnie Lake is a little harder to get too, but worth it for anyone looking for adventure. To get to the lake, you put in on the creek at the boat launch near Rock Creek Bridge. Once you put in at the creek, enjoy a short (1 mile) upstream paddle to the lake. Situated in a basalt canyon, the lake provides great opportunities for exploration. If your up for an extra challenge, the lake’s island offers a couple flat spots for overnight camping. Click here for more info on paddling at Bonnie Lake.
20 minutes west of Spokane, Clear Lake is an ideal destination for fishing outings. There are plenty of spots on the shore for fishing in addition to the WDFW boat launch. In May, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife hosts a kids fishing derby to introduce kids (ages 5-14) to sport fishing. Kids get a free fishing pole, a t-shirt, and a guaranteed shot at catching fish.
Situated just 20 minutes south of Spokane and 5 minutes from Cheney, Fish lake is perfect for an afternoon or evening outing. You can enjoy a bike ride on the fish lake trail with views of the lake or enjoy the shady playground and swimming area. You can also enjoy the lake on kayaks or small boat via the boat launch.
Medical Lake (the lake) is located just minutes from (drum roll) medical lake (the town). Motorized vessels are prohibited on the lake, so its a great spot to enjoy paddling and swimming. Also a favorite spot for Fly fishing, the lake can be easily accessed via the public beach and boat launch.
Spokane Valley/East Area
Liberty Lake is one of the more popular lake destinations near Spokane and can be accessed via the public boat launch and Liberty Lake Regional Park. The park offers a swimming beach, picnic shelters, BBQ areas, a campground, and a 8.5 mile hiking trail with an overlook point featuring a great view Liberty Lake.
Just 20-30 minutes east of Spokane, Newman Lake is a popular recreation destination with swimming, boating, hiking, fishing and more. The lake is surrounded by mountains and pine trees and offers a beautiful setting for rest and relaxation.
No matter where you live in the Inland Northwest, you can easily find a lake 15-20 minutes from your home. So, enjoy an afternoon of relaxation on the lake or plan a weekend at a lakeside resort.