Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail In Oregon

Here is everything you need to know about the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail:

  • Trail System: National Recreation Trail
  • State: Oregon
  • Length: 5 miles.
  • Type: Hiking.
  • Surface: Dirt
  • Managed By: Nez Perce National Historical Park
  • Permit Required?: No
  • Website: Info not available.

The Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail holds significant historical importance as it traces the arduous journey of the Nez Perce people during the late 19th century. The Nez Perce, also known as the Nee Me Poo, were a Native American tribe residing in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. Prior to the arrival of European settlers, the Nez Perce inhabited a vast territory spanning parts of present-day Idaho, Oregon, Washington, and Montana.

In 1877, tensions between the Nez Perce and the U.S. government escalated, leading to a series of conflicts known as the Nez Perce War. The Nez Perce, led by their respected Chief Joseph, sought to resist forced removal from their ancestral lands and maintain their way of life. However, after a series of battles, the Nez Perce were eventually forced to retreat.

The Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail refers to the route taken by the Nez Perce during their attempted escape to Canada, covering approximately 1,170 miles. The journey was treacherous, as the Nez Perce faced harsh weather conditions, lack of supplies, and constant pursuit by the U.S. Army. Despite their valiant efforts, the Nez Perce were ultimately captured just 40 miles short of the Canadian border.

Today, the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail serves as a reminder of the resilience and determination of the Nez Perce people. It stands as a testament to their struggle for freedom and their enduring connection to their ancestral lands. The trail is recognized as a National Historic Trail, preserving the memory of the Nez Perce and their significant role in American history.

While On The Trail

Access Points

1. Wallowa Lake Trailhead, Oregon
2. Joseph Canyon Viewpoint, Oregon
3. Hat Point Trailhead, Oregon
4. Imnaha River Trailhead, Oregon
5. Zumwalt Prairie Trailhead, Oregon
6. Buffalo Eddy Trailhead, Idaho
7. White Bird Battlefield Trailhead, Idaho
8. Kamiah Trailhead, Idaho
9. Lolo Pass Visitor Center, Montana
10. Big Hole National Battlefield, Montana
11. Bear Paw Battlefield, Montana

Transportation Available

1. Nez Perce National Historic Trail – A historic trail that follows the route of the Nez Perce tribe, offering a glimpse into their rich cultural heritage.
2. Lewiston-Nez Perce County Regional Airport – A regional airport providing air transportation services for travelers in the Nez Perce area.
3. Greyhound Bus Station – A bus station offering long-distance transportation services to various destinations.
4. Nez Perce Express – A local shuttle service providing transportation options for residents and visitors in the Nez Perce area.
5. Taxis – Various taxi services available for convenient transportation within the Nez Perce region.
6. Car Rental Agencies – Several car rental companies offering vehicles for rent, providing flexibility and independence for travelers exploring the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail.
7. Ride-Sharing Services – Popular ride-sharing platforms like Uber and Lyft operate in the Nez Perce area, offering convenient transportation options.
8. Bicycle Rentals – Local rental shops providing bicycles for those who prefer to explore the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail on two wheels.
9. Horseback Riding Tours – Guided horseback riding tours available for a unique and immersive experience along the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail.
10. Walking and Hiking – The trail itself offers opportunities for walking and hiking, allowing visitors to experience the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail at their own pace.


The Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail offers the following amenities:

1. Restrooms: There are restroom facilities available along the trail for visitors’ convenience.

2. Parking: There are designated parking areas where visitors can park their vehicles before accessing the trail.

3. Camping Sites: The trail provides camping sites for those who wish to stay overnight. These sites may include tent camping areas or designated spots for RVs and campers.

4. Picnic Areas: There are picnic areas along the trail where visitors can enjoy a meal or snack amidst the scenic surroundings.

5. Interpretive Centers: The trail may have interpretive centers or visitor centers that provide information about the Nez Perce tribe, their history, and the significance of the trail.

6. Trail Markers: The trail is typically well-marked with signs and markers to guide visitors along the route.

7. Information Boards: Information boards may be placed at various points along the trail, providing details about the trail’s history, landmarks, and points of interest.

8. Benches and Rest Stops: There may be benches or rest stops along the trail where visitors can take a break, relax, and enjoy the views.

9. Water Stations: Some sections of the trail may have water stations or fountains where visitors can refill their water bottles.

10. Accessibility: The trail may have accessibility features such as wheelchair ramps, paved paths, or designated accessible areas to accommodate visitors with disabilities.

Please note that the availability of these amenities may vary depending on the specific location and management of the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail. It is recommended to check with local authorities or visitor centers for the most up-to-date information.

Nearby Services

1. Lodging:
– Clearwater 12 Motel – Affordable motel with basic amenities located near the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail.
– Best Western Lodge at River’s Edge – Comfortable hotel offering scenic views and modern facilities close to the trail.
– Canyon House Bed & Breakfast – Charming B&B providing a cozy stay with a homely atmosphere.

2. Food Services:
– Nez Perce Express – Convenient convenience store offering snacks and beverages along the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail.
– River Rock Café – Casual eatery serving American cuisine and comfort food near the trail.
– Kamiah Pizza Factory – Local pizzeria offering a variety of pizzas and other Italian dishes.

3. Emergency Services:
– St. Mary’s Hospital and Clinics – Full-service medical facility providing emergency care and healthcare services in the area.
– Kamiah Police Department – Local law enforcement agency ensuring safety and security in the vicinity of the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail.
– Clearwater County Sheriff’s Office – County sheriff’s office responsible for law enforcement and emergency response in the region.

Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail Difficulty Notes

The Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail presents a challenging journey for those who embark upon it. Spanning over 1,170 miles, this historic trail follows the path taken by the Nez Perce tribe during their attempted escape from the U.S. Army in 1877. The trail traverses diverse terrains, including rugged mountains, dense forests, and vast prairies, making it physically demanding for hikers and horseback riders. Additionally, the trail’s length and remote locations pose logistical challenges, requiring careful planning and preparation. Despite its difficulty, the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail offers a unique opportunity to connect with history and experience the natural beauty of the American West.

Features And Attractions

1. Big Hole National Battlefield: This historical site commemorates the Battle of Big Hole, a significant conflict between the Nez Perce tribe and the U.S. Army in 1877.

2. Bear Paw Battlefield: Located in Montana, this site marks the final battle of the Nez Perce War, where Chief Joseph surrendered to the U.S. Army.

3. Clearwater National Forest: This vast forest in Idaho offers stunning scenic views, with its dense forests, rivers, and mountains.

4. Hells Canyon National Recreation Area: Known as the deepest river gorge in North America, Hells Canyon offers breathtaking views, hiking trails, and opportunities for boating and fishing.

5. Salmon River: The Salmon River, also known as the “River of No Return,” is a designated Wild and Scenic River, offering stunning natural beauty and opportunities for rafting and fishing.

6. Lolo Pass: This mountain pass on the Idaho-Montana border offers scenic views and was historically used by the Nez Perce tribe during their attempted escape to Canada.

7. Wallowa Lake: Located in Oregon, Wallowa Lake is surrounded by beautiful mountains and offers opportunities for fishing, boating, and hiking.

8. Nez Perce National Historical Park: This park spans four states (Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington) and preserves significant sites related to the Nez Perce tribe’s history and culture.

9. Chief Joseph Pass: Located in Montana, this mountain pass offers stunning views and was crossed by Chief Joseph and the Nez Perce tribe during their attempted escape.

10. Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness: This wilderness area spans Idaho and Montana and offers pristine landscapes, including mountains, rivers, and forests, providing opportunities for hiking, camping, and wildlife viewing.

11. Camas Prairie: Located in Idaho, this vast prairie is known for its beautiful wildflowers, including camas lilies, and offers scenic views of rolling hills and farmland.

12. Lapwai Canyon: This canyon in Idaho is home to the Nez Perce Reservation and offers beautiful views of the surrounding landscape.

13. Buffalo Eddy: Located along the Snake River in Washington, this site contains ancient petroglyphs created by the Nez Perce tribe.

14. Craig Mountain Wildlife Management Area: This area in Idaho offers scenic views, hiking trails, and opportunities for wildlife viewing, including elk, deer, and various bird species.

15. Hell’s Gate State Park: Situated along the Snake River in Idaho, this park offers scenic views, camping facilities, and recreational activities such as boating, fishing, and hiking.

Usage Guidelines

1. Pets are allowed on the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail but must be kept on a leash at all times.
2. Please clean up after your pets and dispose of waste properly.
3. The trail is open year-round, but certain sections may have seasonal restrictions or closures due to weather conditions. Check with local authorities or trail management for current information.
4. Camping is allowed in designated areas along the trail. Please follow any specific camping regulations and leave no trace.
5. Hunting and fishing may be permitted in certain areas along the trail, but you must comply with local regulations and obtain the necessary permits.
6. Bicycles and horses are allowed on the trail, but be mindful of other trail users and yield to pedestrians.
7. Motorized vehicles are not allowed on the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail, except for authorized maintenance vehicles.
8. Fires are only permitted in designated fire rings or grills. Always check for any fire restrictions or bans before starting a fire.
9. Respect the natural environment and wildlife along the trail. Do not disturb or feed any animals you encounter.
10. Stay on designated trails and do not trespass onto private property adjacent to the trail.
11. Carry out all trash and dispose of it properly in designated bins or take it with you.
12. Be prepared and carry necessary supplies such as water, food, and appropriate clothing for the duration of your hike or activity on the trail.
13. Follow any additional rules or guidelines posted at trailheads or along the trail.

Seasonal Information

The Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail is a historic route that follows the path taken by the Nez Perce tribe during their attempted escape from the U.S. Army in 1877. This trail offers visitors a unique opportunity to retrace the steps of the Nez Perce and learn about their rich history and culture. When planning a visit to the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail, it is important to consider the best times of the year to visit and any seasonal closures.

The best times of the year to visit the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail are during the spring, summer, and early fall months. Springtime, from April to June, offers mild temperatures and blooming wildflowers, creating a picturesque setting for hiking and exploring the trail. Summer, from June to August, is the peak tourist season, with warm weather and longer daylight hours, allowing visitors to fully immerse themselves in the natural beauty of the trail. Early fall, from September to October, brings cooler temperatures and vibrant foliage, providing a stunning backdrop for outdoor activities.

It is important to note that some sections of the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail may have seasonal closures due to weather conditions or maintenance work. For example, during the winter months, heavy snowfall can make certain parts of the trail inaccessible. It is advisable to check with local authorities or visitor centers for up-to-date information on trail conditions and closures before planning your visit. Additionally, some areas along the trail may have limited services or facilities, so it is recommended to come prepared with food, water, and appropriate gear for hiking and camping.

Overall, the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail offers a captivating journey through history and nature. Whether you choose to visit during the spring, summer, or early fall, you will have the opportunity to experience the beauty of the trail and gain a deeper understanding of the Nez Perce tribe’s struggle for freedom. Just be sure to check for any seasonal closures and come prepared for an unforgettable adventure.


1. Wheelchair Accessibility: The Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail offers wheelchair accessibility, ensuring individuals with mobility challenges can navigate the trail comfortably.
2. Accessible Parking: Designated accessible parking spaces are available near the trailhead, providing convenient access for individuals with disabilities.
3. Accessible Restrooms: Accessible restrooms are located along the trail, equipped with features like grab bars and wider doorways to accommodate wheelchair users.
4. Trail Surface: The trail surface is designed to be smooth and even, allowing wheelchair users to traverse the path without encountering significant obstacles.
5. Rest Areas: Rest areas with benches and accessible seating are strategically placed along the trail, providing opportunities for individuals to take breaks and enjoy the surroundings.
6. Signage: Clear and visible signage is installed along the trail, including braille and tactile elements, to assist individuals with visual impairments in navigating the route.
7. Assistance Animals: The Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail welcomes assistance animals, ensuring individuals with disabilities have the necessary support during their visit.
8. Trail Width: The trail is wide enough to accommodate wheelchairs and mobility devices, allowing individuals to travel side by side comfortably.
9. Accessible Viewing Areas: Scenic viewpoints and overlooks along the trail are designed to be accessible, providing everyone with the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful vistas.
10. Informational Materials: ADA-compliant informational materials, such as brochures and maps, are available to provide individuals with disabilities with relevant information about the trail and its features.

Safety Information

1. Trail Difficulty: The Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail is a moderately difficult trail with varying terrain and elevation changes.
2. Weather Conditions: Be prepared for changing weather conditions, including rain, snow, and extreme temperatures.
3. Trail Markings: Pay attention to trail markers and signs to avoid getting lost or straying off the designated path.
4. Wildlife Encounters: Exercise caution and keep a safe distance from wildlife such as bears, elk, and deer.
5. Water Sources: Carry enough water or water purification methods as there may be limited water sources along the trail.
6. Camping Regulations: Familiarize yourself with camping regulations and obtain necessary permits before setting up camp.
7. Emergency Services: Be aware that emergency services may be limited or unavailable in certain sections of the trail, so carry a first aid kit and know basic wilderness survival skills.
8. Trail Conditions: Check for trail conditions and closures before embarking on the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail.
9. Leave No Trace: Practice Leave No Trace principles by packing out all trash, minimizing campfire impact, and respecting the natural environment.
10. Hiking in Groups: It is recommended to hike in groups for safety, especially in remote sections of the trail.
11. Physical Fitness: Ensure you are physically fit and adequately prepared for the length and difficulty of the trail.
12. Navigation Tools: Carry a map, compass, or GPS device to navigate the trail accurately.
13. Lightning Safety: Be cautious of lightning storms and seek shelter in low-lying areas or designated lightning-safe structures.
14. Trail Etiquette: Respect other hikers and trail users by yielding to uphill hikers, keeping noise levels low, and following any specific trail etiquette guidelines.
15. Emergency Contacts: Carry emergency contact information and inform someone of your hiking plans and expected return time.

Conservation Notes

The Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail holds significant historical and cultural value as it traces the route taken by the Nez Perce tribe during their attempted escape from the U.S. Army in 1877. This trail, spanning approximately 1,170 miles, is a testament to the resilience and determination of the Nez Perce people. In terms of conservation status, the trail faces various challenges that require attention and preservation efforts.

One of the primary concerns for the conservation of the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail is the encroachment of modern development. As urbanization and infrastructure projects continue to expand, there is a risk of the trail being disrupted or destroyed. It is crucial to ensure that the trail’s integrity is maintained, allowing future generations to connect with the history and heritage it represents.

Another conservation issue is the threat of natural erosion and degradation. Over time, weathering and erosion can cause damage to the trail, potentially erasing important historical markers and landmarks. Regular maintenance and monitoring are necessary to prevent further deterioration and to preserve the trail’s authenticity.

Efforts to conserve the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail involve collaboration between various stakeholders, including tribal communities, government agencies, and conservation organizations. These groups work together to develop strategies for trail management, restoration, and protection. By implementing measures such as trail maintenance, erosion control, and educational programs, the conservation status of the Nez Perce – Nee Me Poo Trail can be improved, ensuring its long-term preservation for future generations to appreciate and learn from.

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