Road Trip – The Grand Coulee Loop In Washington State

North Central Washington’s varieties of landscapes, terrains, people, and climates make it a beautiful place to spend time exploring via a road trip. One road trip you can do is known as the Grand Coulee Loop and can be done in one day or as an overnight experience.

Starting the trip in Wenatchee, in the heart of apple country, you will head north along the Columbia River on highway 97. On the way you will pass by Rocky Reach Dam, one of the many hydroelectric dams you will see on this trip 먹튀검증. Here you can view fish going through the fish ladders and tour the Museum of the Columbia.

Continuing north you will pass through the small town of Entiat which sits at the mouth of the Entiat River and continue on to the town of Chelan. Chelan sits at the bottom of Lake Chelan where the water drains out to the Columbia River down below. Lake Chelan is over 50 miles long and provides great opportunities for the boater, jet skier, or fisherman. If you have an extra day, take the trip up the lake by boat to the community of Stehekin. Stehekin is an isolated village at the top of Lake Chelan that no roads go to, you can only get there by boat, water plane, or hiking trails. The town of Chelan has many great opportunities for shopping in its old downtown section. Antique shops, art galleries, and many other local businesses are just waiting to be explored.

Continuing north from Chelan you’ll pass through the towns of Pateros and Brewster. Both of these communities are largely agricultural based and provide nice places for breaks off the highway and along the river. Before you reach Pateros you will pass by a second hydroelectric dam, Wells Dam. The water that backs up behind Wells Dam provides for a popular recreational site for locals and visitors alike. Located in Brewster, and mounted on a pedestal near the Veterans of Foreign War building, is an actual Air Force fighter jet. Quite a sight to see in a town as small as this.

From Brewster you will want to cross the Columbia River and head to Bridgeport which is roughly 12 miles to the east. Bridgeport was at one time home to the largest hotel found between Seattle and Spokane, this was the case back in 1910 anyway. Bridgeport is home to the Chief Joseph Dam which is the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the nation. Chief Joseph Dam is large and erected at the mouth of a canyon, the water built up behind it is called Rufus Woods Reservoir and attracts fisherman from far and wide.

About 38 miles east of Bridgeport you will come to the Grand Coulee Dam. The site of the dam is magnificent and well worth the trip by itself. Like Chief Joseph Dam in Bridgeport there are tours available to explore the inner workings of this large structure. After dark during the warmer months a laser light show is beamed onto the face of the dam and accompanied by a historical narrative and music. The show is popular with children and adults alike and is a must-see event. Lake Roosevelt is formed by the water behind Grand Coulee Dam and extends all the way to the border with Canada. Fishing, camping and all sorts of water sports are popular on Lake Roosevelt. Many local businesses are in the area with the three small communities of Coulee Dam, Grand Coulee, and Electric City at your service.

As you drive south from Grand Coulee Dam you’ll be following the shoreline of Banks Lake. Banks Lake is actually a manmade lake filled with water pumped up from Grand Coulee Dam. Again, as with all the other bodies of water in North Central Washington there are many fishing, boating and camping opportunities on Banks Lake. Steamboat Rock State Park is a popular site for campers and water sports enthusiasts, take a break and climb to the top of the rock. At the southern most end of Banks Lake is Coulee City, here you head back west across the earthen Dry Falls dam on your way back to where you started. Just south of the Dry Falls Dam is Dry Falls itself, the remnants of a huge waterfall larger than Niagara Falls sits before your eyes and is stunning. Sun Lakes State Park is also located here.

Continuing back on Highway 2 and heading west you will drive through the scablands of the Grand Coulee country until you hit the wheat lands near Waterville. Waterville is the county seat for Douglas County and has a rich farming history. Just west of Waterville you descend down Pine Canyon and see the Columbia River again. Heading south at Orondo, another small agricultural community, you will hit the northern end of East Wenatchee and be back near where you began your trip.

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