One Photo:  A Crowded Crescent Bar Beach

A summer day saw us drop down off of Highway 28 in Eastern Washington into the vacation getaway of Crescent Bar.  This particular Saturday saw this little vacation spot absolutely packed.  The beach here is at the edge of the Columbia River and the inlet of water that allows boats to access the marina.

The scene looks like a multitude of memories being made as people from all walks of life cool themselves in the water or warm themselves in the sun.

Five Fun Facts About Grants Pass, Oregon

Grants Pass sits in southern Oregon, right on Interstate 5 and very near the community of Medford. This is a fun community with some great activities. It’s also very near to some honest to goodness first class attractions too like Wildlife Safari, Oregon Caves National Monument, and Crater Lake. You could even take Highway 199 and head west to the Pacific Ocean!

It’s always nice to know more about a place before you visit. Here are five fun facts about Grants Pass, Oregon.

What’s In A Name?

Grants Pass post office was established in 1865 and was given its name to honor the success of future President of the United States Ulysses S. Grant’s success at Vicksburg during the Civil War.

Coffee, Anyone?

In 1992, two brothers joined together to run a small pushcart coffee business in downtown Grants Pass. That one pushcart would eventually grow to become the very well known drive-thru coffee chain, Dutch Brothers.

Old Newspaper

The Grants Pass Daily Courier, the main newspaper for Josephine County, was established way back in 1885.

Grants Pass Running Back

Dick James was born in Grants Pass and would go on to play football at the University of Oregon. He was then selected in the 8th round of the 1956 NFL Draft by the Washington Redskins. He played eight seasons with the Redskins and then one each with the Giants and Vikings. 2002 would see him named one of the 70 Greatest Redskins on the 70th anniversary of the team’s founding. He would also be so honored in 2012 as a member of the 80 Greatest Redskins. As of 2016, he still holds the NFL record for most career rushing touchdowns by a player born in Oregon.

Oldest and Best

Grants Pass is home to the state of Oregon’s longest running growers and crafters market.

5 Questions With The Bureau Of Reclamation At Grand Coulee Dam

5 Questions With The Bureau of Reclamation at Grand Coulee Dam

Grand Coulee Dam

One of the top vacation attractons in Eastern Washington is Grand Coulee Dam. This magnificent structure, one of the most impressive things humans have ever built, has been welcoming visitors for years. When you go there, you will find plenty of opportunities to learn and study about it, some great places to view it, and some truly fun experiences too.

The road trip to get to Grand Coulee Dam can be a lot of fun too, with some great attractions along the way including Dry Falls, Moses Coulee, Banks Lake, Soap Lake, Chief Joseph Dam, and Lake Lenore Caves.

We recently reached out to the Bureau of Reclamation at Grand Coulee Dam to see if they’d answer some questions about this top notch attraction and important part of the Pacific Northwest’s agriculture and electrical industries. Lucky for us, they said Yes!

1st Question
Grand Coulee Dam is obviously popular with locals and travelers alike. Do you have any idea how many people visit the dam each year?

Over the past five years, Grand Coulee Dam has had an average of 260,000 visitors per year.

2nd Question
How long has the famous laser light show been running at Grand Coulee Dam?

The original laser light show ran for 25 years from 1989 – 2013. In 2014, we began playing a new show.

3rd Question
Grand Coulee Dam is a huge structure. How long did it take and how much did it cost to build it?

The original dam was constructed from 1933 – 1941 at a cost of $300 million (in 1940’s dollars).

The Third Power Plant and forebay dam was added from 1967 -1975 at a cost of $700 million (in 1980’s dollars).

4th Question
Grand Coulee Dam is a great destination attraction and also an awesome place to stop at on a road trip through the area. What’s the best place there to have a picnic.

There are several places in the area to have a picnic, including Douglas Park, North Dam Park or Spring Canyon.

5th Question
My favorite question: Is there a little known fact about Grand Coulee Dam that may surprise some people?

There is enough concrete in Grand Coulee Dam to build a standard sidewalk around the equator twice.

A very special thank you to Lynne Brougher, the Public Affairs Specialist at the Grand Coulee Power Office!

Get more information on Grand Coulee Dam:
Website: Grand Coulee Dam

One Photo:  The Pybus Public Market Sign In Wenatchee

At NWRoadtrips, we love signs.  This includes modern signs, neon signs, vintage signs, traffic signs, historical signs, and ghost signs.  The “Public Market” sign at Pybus Public Market in Wenatchee is one of the great signs in Washington State.

Looking up into Wenatchee towards the hillsides beyond is a great way to view the sign.  It dominates the local scenery when you stand in the parking lot of this very fun attraction.  A nice bonus is that you can check out the sign, get a snack or a drink, and take a walk along the Columbia River all from this one spot.

Five Great Attractions Within An Easy Drive Of Cashmere, Washington

Cashmere Washington

Cashmere Washington

The small town of Cashmere sits in the beautiful Wenatchee Valley and offers a fun experience to anyone who goes there. When you visit Cashmere, you’ll have the opportunity to check out the local shopping, sample some of the many great eating establishments there, and relax in a small town that knows how to treat visitors. One of the top reasons to visit Cashmere is that it has a great location and there is a lot to do and see in all directions.

Here are five great attractions within an easy drive of Cashmere, Washington.

Lake Wenatchee

Lake Wenatchee sits on the eastern slopes of the Cascade Mountains and has a lot to offer you, especially if you like to partake in outdoor recreation. Lake Wenatchee is home to great boating, fishing, swimming, kayaking, waterskiing, and jetskiing opportunities. Lake Wenatchee State Park offers you the chance to put your boat in the water, go camping, or have a picnic outing. There is also a large beach there too and that is a great place to hang out for a few hours right along the water. Lake Wenatchee is a gorgeous area and you won’t regreat venturing out to see it during your stay in or around Cashmere.

Downtown Leavenworth

The town of Leavenworth, just a short drive west from Cashmere, is one of the most unique towns you’ll ever come to. The entire town is designed with a Bavarian theme and walking through it can give you a tiny taste of being in a far different place. The town is known for its many festivals and celebrations, and showing up for one of those is usually a hit with everyone. Leavenworth is a shopping attraction and offers so many chances to purchase items you’ve never even seen before. With restaurants, cafes, pubs, and bakeries that are famous throughout the Pacific Northwest and beyond, you have nothing to worry about when it comes time to get something to eat or drink. A visit to Leavenworth really can make any visit to Cashmere and the Wenatchee Valley something you won’t soon forget.

Lake Chelan

Lake Chelan is one of the top draws to North Central Washington, and has been for more than a century. When you go to Lake Chelan, there is a long list of things that you can do. You can visit two separate state parks on the south shore of the lake. You can get out on the water and enjoy boating, fishing, kayaking, swimming, waterskiing, and more. You can take a boat ride uplake to the tiny town of Stehekin that is sealed off from the rest of the world as no roads go into or out of there. You can explore Downtown Chelan and enjoy all the shops, restaurants, and pubs that can be found there. You can venture out to Manson and explore another tiny town or even spend time at the small casino there. There are also plenty of beaches and lakeside parks where you and anyone traveling with you can relax near the lake or even take a dip in the cold, refreshing water.

Rocky Reach Dam

Rocky Reach Dam is one of the most important links in the hydroelectric network that produces power in North Central Washington. It was built in the 1950’s and has provided many benefits to the area and even the entire state. When you go there, you can spend time out on the playgrounds and groomed grounds that welcome you. When you venture inside the visitor center though you’ll gain access to the cafe, viewpoints of the dam, fish viewing windows, and even a museum that sits out on the dam itself. Rocky Reach Dam has been popular with locals and visitors alike for many years.

Wenatchee Valley Museum

The Wenatchee Valley Museum and Cultural Center sits just minutes away from Cashmere in the city of Wenatchee and does an excellent job of telling the story of the people who built the Wenatchee Valley into what it is today. The early days of the valley, like now, were tied tightly to agriculture. The museum shows some great examples of the milestones of agriculture throughout history that helped shape the valley but also helped communities elsewhere. More than just photographs on the wall, the Wenatchee Valley Museum has a lot to see that will really inform and inspire a visitor to the area.

Five Great Attractions Within An Easy Drive Of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

The Coeur d'Alene Resort

The Coeur d'Alene Resort

Coeur d’Alene is an amazing city to visit and it offers something for everyone. There are fun things to do, like getting out on the water of the lake that shares the city’s name, and great places to eat and go shopping. Another great part of Coeur d’Alene though is how close it is to several other great attractions. Here is a look at just five of the great attractions you can visit within an easy drive of Coeur d’Alene.

Spokane’s Riverfront Park

If you drive just a short way west from Coeur d’Alene you’ll reach the city of Spokane. Right downtown in Spokane is one of the city’s most popular attractions, Riverfront Park. This amazing parks sits on the grounds of the 1974 World’s Fair, known as Expo ’74. There are paved pathways that lead in all directions that take you for a great tour of the Spokane River, the island areas, the local downtown section, Spokane Falls, and more. The park is also home to an IMAX theater, amusement park games, ice skating in the winter, miniature golf, gondola rides, and more. There’s even a huge oversized Radio Flyer wagon your kids can slide down and a vacuum powered goat sculpture that will suck the garbage right out of your hand. Riverfront Park is great for so many reasons, including everything from all the activities to the amazing history, to the wide open green spaces, and more. If you want to experience Spokane, you can’t do it without visiting Riverfront Park.

Triple Play Family Fun Park

Located in Hayden Lake, just a short drive north from Coeur d’Alene, Triple Play Family Fun Park is a top notch destination for those traveling with kids. This popular attraction features an indoor water park, bowling alley, rope course, bowling, bumper cars, bumper boats, arcade, climbing wall, miniature golf, go karts, and laser tag. If time allows, there’s an on site hotel and you can add a day to your Coeur d’Alene stay and be right there at Triple Play Family Fun Park.

Flathead Lake

Flathead Lake is located east of Coeur d’Alene, across the border in Montana. The small towns of Polson and Kalispell are the main settlements along the lake. Both offer fun things to do too, but it can be a nice time just driving all the way around this large lake. The beautiful Montana scenery viewing options are popular with professional and amateur photographes. If you have more room in your schedule, take the time to get out on the water of Flathead Lake.

Cat Tales Zoological Park

Just a short drive east from Coeur d’Alene is another of the many great local attractions for families, Cat Tales Zoological Park in Spokane. This wildlife park and teaching zoo is home to an excellent selection of animals, including black bears, bobcats, lions, cougars, tigers, and a number of exotic birds. The zoo is easy to navigate for everyone and is definitely one of Spokane’s hidden gems!

Silverwood Theme Park

Silverwood Theme Park is located just a half hour north of Coeur d’Alene and has been a popular destination in the northwest for decades. The park includes rollercoasters, an authentic steam train, as well as lots of shops and chances to get something to eat. It’s also right next to Boulder Beach Water Park. Combining these two attractions makes any visit to Coeur d’Alene a hit, especially if you’re traveling with kids.

5/22/2017 Pacific Northwest Social Media Greatest Hits

PNW Social Media Greatest Hits

As the weather gets warmer we have a lot more sharing of some great outdoor scenery and activities. Plus other things going on too! Here is this week’s edition of Pacific Northwest Social Media Greatest Hits!

Two #tugboats and 3 #wheatbardges #locking down at the same time. #shavertransportation

A post shared by Josh Sheldon (@nwwhiteh2o) on

Don't mind our conversation, but this was today with this cute birdie 🐦

A post shared by Katelynn Sniecinski (@callmekatebabe) on

Quite rainy morning walk to wrap up my last day on the peninsula.

A post shared by P r e s t o n (@prestonhoffman_) on

One Photo:  Concrete Silos in Concrete, Washington

This is another one of those road trip photo ops that just jumps right out at you.  On a drive along Highway 20 through the Concrete, Washington area, a huge and dominant structure looms right over the road.

This is another one of those things you stumble across on a road trip that has almost everything.  First, there’s the historic nature of the structure and how it ties back to the early development of the Skagit Valley and the famous hydroelectric dams found throughout the region.  Second, there’s the famous Hollywood movie relationship the concrete silo and welcome sign has.  Third, there’s the way it just dominates the local scenery.  Fourth, there’s the impressiveness of the structure, especially for the time it was built.

There are a lot more things to like about this photo subject too.  Something for everyone, really.  And it’s the kind of thing that’s hard to drive by without stopping and capturing with your camera.