Five Fun Facts About Tonasket, Washington

Tonasket, Washington sits far up north in North Central Washington and has a lot to offer as a destination or just a stop on a drive through the region. It’s located in Okanogan County and it and the entire area around it have a very interesting history.

Here are five fun facts about Tonasket, Washington.


Tonasket is named for Chief Tonasket of the Okanogan. He was grand chief of the American Okanogan. This division of the people was created by the 1846 Oregon Treaty that drew the Canada-United States border.

Water Borders

Water forms the approximate borders of the town of Tonasket on three sides. On the east the boundary is formed by the Okanogan River, on the north it is formed by Siwash Creek, and the southern border is mainly formed by Bonaparte Creek.

17 Year Difference

Tonasket was first platted in 1910 but would not be officially incorporated until 1927.

How Far?

The town of Tonasket is located 20 miles south of the Canadian border. It’s also 164 miles northwest of Spokane and roughly 260 miles northeast of Seattle.


It was the 2010 United States Census that finally saw Tonasket’s population top the 1,000 mark when it totaled 1,032. It had just missed the mark in the 2000 national census when population was measured at 994.

Five Fun Facts About Lake Lenore Caves In North Central Washington

Lake Lenore Caves

One of the more interesting places to visit in North Central Washington is Lake Lenore Caves. This spot north of Soap Lake and south of Coulee City is a great family destination for a quick hike up on the hillside for a unique opportunity to explore some caves. This is yet another of the many places locals and tourists are lucky to have access to in this region.

Here are five fun facts about Lake Lenore Caves.

How It’s Made

Lake Lenore Caves were formed during the famous Great Missoula Flood. Rushing water pulled huge pieces of basalt away from and out of the walls of the coulee, leaving behind shallow caves.

Yeah, It’s A Trail, But…

There is a short trail that leads up to the caves from the parking lot at Lake Lenore Caves. Part of this trail, as it rises up the steep terrain, is actually a manmade staircase.

Lucky Number 7

There are a total of seven caves along this main trail that accesses Lake Lenore Caves. While created by the Great Missoula Flood, they were used by Native Americans as temporary lodging and storage.

Two Lakes

While standing in front of the caves at Lake Lenore Caves, you can view two lakes in front of you. Straight ahead and to the south is Lenore Lake. To the north is Alkali Lake.

Steep, But Short

While the initial approach to the trail at Lake Lenore Caves is steep, it’s relatively short. There is only an elevation gain of about 200 feet and the entire trail is only one and a half miles long.

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