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Out & About: Canoe classic moves from river to lake

Sun., June 5, 2011

The Spokane River Canoe Classic race has been moved to Liberty Lake for safety reasons. (Rich Landers)
The Spokane River Canoe Classic race has been moved to Liberty Lake for safety reasons. (Rich Landers)

OUTPADDLE – The annual Spokane River Canoe Classic, normally set on its namesake stream, has been moved to Liberty Lake this year because of the dangerously high river flows. 

The June 18 event will begin with registration at 9 a.m. and the race start at 11 a.m. at Liberty Lake County Park. The race will be followed by a free post-race barbecue, said Phil Bridgers of Mountain Gear, which has sponsored the event for more than two decades.

Paddlers in canoe and kayaks will have a choice of paddling one or two loops on a course to be set up on the lake, Bridgers said.

Known for awarding plenty of ribbons in various divisions as well as for lottery prize drawings, the classic is a popular way for families to kick off their Father’s Day weekend.

Cost: $20 a person.

To preregister, download a form at

Info: Mountain Gear, 325-9000.

License fee dropped;

fishing clinics offered

OUTHOOK – Saturday has been set as Free Fishing Day in Idaho, and Washington will double the pleasure next weekend by dropping the general fishing license requirement for Saturday and Sunday.

While fishing license requirements will be suspended, all other rules, such as limits or tackle restrictions, remain in effect.

Both states are celebrating the day with fishing clinics:

• Fishing 101 for Adults is being offered Saturday by the Washington Fish and Wildlife Department and the Inland Northwest Wildlife Council.

All but a handful of the 40 slots had been filled by last week. Check availability by emailing or calling the WDFW, 892-1001.

• Fishing for novices sessions are being offered at a dozen North Idaho locations where equipment will be available to borrow and fishing experts will be on hand to help novice anglers learn the basics. All sites will be stocked with hatchery rainbow trout prior to the event.

Events are 9 a.m.-noon (unless noted otherwise) at the following locations:

Coeur d’Alene at Ponderosa Springs Golf Course, 7 a.m.-11 a.m.; Bonners Ferry at Snow Creek Pond; Calder Pond; Clark Fork Lodge; Enaville at Steamboat Ponds; Harrison Marina; Mullan at Lucky Friday Pond; Post Falls Park Pond; Priest Lake Golf Course; Rathdrum City Park; Sandpoint at Round Lake State Park; Moscow/Troy at Spring Valley Reservoir.

Info: Idaho Fish and Game, (208) 769-1414.

NIC ‘sprint race’ all about adventure

What: NIChallenge, adventure sprint race incorporating paddling, trail running and mountain biking, special challenges and navigation trials.

When: 9 a.m., June 19

Where: TBA

Cost: $80 per person

Details: For teams of two or four. Course announced just before race. Requires roughly 4 hours to complete.

Info and sign-up: (208) 769-7809;

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