Located seven miles northwest of Kooskia, Kamiah, with a population of over 1200, lies along the Lewis and Clark Highway (US Highway 12) on the banks of the beautiful Clearwater River and is a well-rounded community with vast amounts of recreational opportunities. ATV and snowmobile access are literally out your front door with snowboarding and skiing just a short drive to either Grangeville or Cottonwood.
Kamiah, with its comfort of small-town life, is rich in heritage and legends of the Nez Perce people. It was here that the Appaloosa horse was first bred and used as a war animal. Meriwether Lewis and Captain William Clark spent the third longest period in the Kamiah Valley with the Nez Perce Indians waiting for the snow to melt before continuing on their return trip east in 1806. A historical landmark of the Nez Perce Indians, the sacred “Heart of the Monster” is located just east of Kamiah on US Highway 12.
You will find an interpretive shelter with audio station which explains the Nez Perce story. To the Nez Perce, this site is considered the place of all creation. Wildlife viewing is a must along U.S. Highway 12 with numerous pullouts and view points to watch the many varieties of animals. If hunting is what you desire, you’ll have a variety of game to choose from such as the nation’s largest elk herd, along with deer, mountain lions, bear, pheasant and grouse that inhabit the wilderness. Kamiah is also known for its steelhead, salmon, trout and other game fish.
Kamiah, with its Western/Victorian-style charm, has many modern amenities which include lodging, groceries, fuel,shopping and a tribal casino.
Kamiah provides a Labor Day Free BBQ each year for the communities along with the annual Kamiah Bluegrass Festival, Chief Lookingglass Days and the Nez Perce Indian Root Festival and Pow Wow.
Pictures courtesy of clearwaterprogress.com