Benewah County’s east side is largely mountainous, where logging is the predominant industry. The west side consists of rolling hills, and agriculture is the primary industry.

Four-fifths of the county is forested, and one fifth of the county’s landbase is in cropland. Major waterways include the St. Joe River, the St. Maries River and the lower portion of Couer d’ Alene Lake and its chain lakes.


St. Maries enjoys a temperate climate with only rare extremes in either temperature or precipitation. The figures provided below are based on a thirty-year climate history of St. Maries.

January average temperature: 28.6 degrees
July average temperature: 67.5 degrees
Annual precipitation: 30.49″
Annual snowfall: 59.5″

Geographic Location

47 degrees 18 minutes North

116 degrees 34 minutes West


The predominant race in Benewah County is white, with 7278 Caucasians according to the 1990 Census. There are 124 persons of Hispanic origin, 602 of Native American origin, 28 of Asian or Pacific origin and 6 of African origin. There are a total of 2223 families in the county. Of this number 1876 are married and 234 have female heads of household.