5 Fun Facts About Highway 17 In North Central Washington

Highway 17 - The Coulee Corridor

Going north to south through the heart of North Central Washington is Highway 17. This state route passes through some fun communities and near some impressive attractions. It’s an important part of the local region.

Here are five fun facts about North Central Washington’s Highway 17.

County Crossings

Highway 17 passes through five different counties on its trip north, including Franklin, Adams, Grant, Douglas, and Okanogan.

A Scenic Byway

Highway 17 is officially designated as the Coulee Corridor Scenic Byway between Othello and Coulee City as it passes through the Grand Coulee.

Only One?

Highway 17 stretches for a little over 36 miles. In all that time it crosses just one river, the Columbia River at Bridgeport. This comes just a little over eight miles before the highway ends where it meets U.S. 97.

From 3 Comes 1

When the national highway renumbering plan came about in 1964, Highway 17 was established from three other highways. It was made up of Secondary State Highway 11G, Primary State Highway 7, and part of Primary State Highway 10.

Where’d Those Miles Go?

When Highway 17 was established in 1964, it was 144.27 miles long. Highway 395 was realigned later and Highway 17’s starting point was moved, chopping off 7.6 miles of its length.

A Gorgeous Sunland Estates Vacation Getaway Opportunity!

North Central Washington has many beautiful corners worth exploring. Travel in one direction and you’ll find high mountain peaks, another you’ll find small towns and medium sized cities, still other areas will feature rolling hills dotted with farmland. The landscape you find when you travel to the Columbia River near Vantage is inviting and fun too.

In this portion of the region you’ll find a lot of sagebrush covered hills and high cliff walls along the river. For things to do, you’ll be within an easy drive of places like the Wild Horse Wind Farm, the Gorge Amphitheatre, Potholes State Park, Wanapum and Priest Rapids dams, Ginkgo Petrified Forest State Park, and more. There will also be award winning wineries in all directions too. You might even have fun exploring small towns like Kittitas, Vantage, George, Quincy, and Ephrata. Add to that all the incredible things you’ll be able to experience if you bring along your boat and it’s very easy to see just why this part of North Central Washington is so popular.

No great destination is complete though without an awesome place to stay. If you’re visiting the Vantage area along the Columbia River, one of the best options for an long weekend is found at this little Vacation Paradise located in Sunland Estates!

Vacation Paradise At Sunland Estates

This popular vacation rental features everything you need to have the perfect getaway along the Columbia River. The property sleeps up to 10 people and features three bedrooms and three bathrooms. There is plenty of room inside too for all those people to not only have fun together, but also feel like they have some space of their own too. No one will feel cramped when it comes time to dining or sleeping.

Vacation Paradise At Sunland Estates

One of the best attributes of this vacation paradise though is what is found outdoors though. People come from miles around to Eastern Washington for the warm weather. The backyard here though offers plenty of shade too for those times when you want some shelter from the sun. There’s outdoor seating for everyone so even meal time can be taken there. There’s also a large hot tub that can be the perfect ending to a day in North central Washington.

When you combine all there is to do and see in the surrounding area with how much fun you can have right there at your vacation rental, it’s easy to see how visiting Sunland Estates along the Columbia River could be one of the best getaways ever.

Check this property out online:


Five More Fun Facts About North Central Washington Highways

US 97A Knapps Hill Tunnel

The highways of North Central Washington have a unique history. Learning about the roads we travel on can be a lot of fun. They not only bring us to interesting places but they are interesting all on their own.

Here is a look at five fun facts about the North Central region’s various highways.

The North Cascades Highway

The North Cascades Highway stretches across Highway 20 and is the northnernmost route across the Cascade Mountain range in the United States. The stretch of road that closes every year due to avalanche danger is 44 miles in length from milepost 134 to 178.

Highway 2

Highway 2 goes west to east across North Central Washington. It’s one of two highways in the region that drives across the top of a dam. Just west of Coulee City, at the southern end of Banks Lake, it crosses Dry Falls Dam.

Highway 97A Wenatchee to Chelan

The “A” in Highway 97A stands for the word “alternate” and serves as the alternate highway to Highway 97 which runs on the opposite side of the Columbia River. Highway 97A was originally called Highway 97 until it was moved to the Douglas County side of the river in place of the former Highway 151. Highway 97A is the only state highway in the North Central region that goes through a tunnel.

Highway 971 Near Chelan

Highway 971 near Chelan starts and ends where it intersects with the exact same highway. It leaves Highway 97A just south of the Knapps Hill Tunnel, winds up the hill and through the Navarre Coulee, then travels back east along the south shore of Lake Chelan before rejoining Highway 97A again.

Highway 155 Along Banks Lake

Highway 155 stretches from Coulee City, north through the Grand Coulee Dam area, and then over Disautel Pass to Omak and Highway 97. Prior to the renumbering of the state highways in 1964, the stretch from Coulee City to Grand Coulee Dam was Secondary State Highway 2F and the section from there to Omak was Secondary State Highway 10F.

Highlighting Some Great Wenatchee Area Instagram Accounts

There are some great Instagram accounts out there showing photos of Wenatchee and the surrounding area. Since that was the original idea behind NCWpics when it started 10 years ago, here we’re sharing a few dedicated to the region adn that we’ve seen recently show off some great stuff.


WSDOT Drone Footage From North Cascades Highway Reopening

This week we got a treat from the Washington State Department of Transportation when they released drone footage taken from some of the last efforts in the reopening of the very scenic North Cascades Highway. The North Cascades Highway is a popular scenic byway that connects Western Washington and Eastern Washington in the northernmost part of the state. Vacationers taking that route get the opportunity to see the high mountain peaks, incredible scenic views, and the interesting sites and communities like Winthrop, Mazama, Washington Pass, Rainy Pass, Diablo Dam, Ross Lake, Newhalem, and more. The pass is closed during the winter months though because of heavy snow and avalanche danger. This means each spring, the WSDOT has to commence reopening operations. Those operations go a little something like this:

That’s hard and dangerous work up there and those crews do a great job. If you haven’t had the opportunity to take that trip, we can’t recommend it more highly. Drive the North Cascades Highway this summer, for sure!

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