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North America > United States of America > Pacific Northwest > Washington (state) > Columbia River Plateau > Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park

Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park

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Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park is in the Columbia River Plateau of Washington State.

Dry Falls

Get in[edit]

Washington State Hwy 17 runs through a large portion of the park, and there are multiple entrances.

Most tourists arrive via US Hwy 2 which runs across the state from Everett to Newport (near Spokane). In the Seattle Metro area, there are short cuts to US Hwy 2 from Bothell on WA State Hwy 522, and Duvall (east of Redmond) on WA State Hwy 203. Otherwise, take the I-5 Fwy exit #194 in Everett where US Hwy 2 begins. The turnoff to State Hwy 17 south is just west of Coulee City.

From Grand Coulee Dam, take Hwy 155 south, and turn right at US Hwy 2. State Hwy 17 is just over four miles (left turn), on the other side of Coulee City.

See[edit]

  • 1 Dry Falls. A canyon where the Missoula Flood waters once dropped over 400 ft. at the end of the last ice age. The waterfall was four times the size of Niagara Falls, and carried more water by volume than all the rivers of the world combined. An interpretive center is on the south side of the parking lot, though there are informational signs and displays throughout the parking areas as well. Dry Falls (Q38402) on Wikidata Dry Falls on Wikipedia
  • 2 Sun Lakes. This is the main lake (called "Park Lake") just south of the Dry Falls overlook. If you don't have time for its recreational activities, the view from the highway is better than driving down to the lake shore.
  • 3 Blue Lake Entrance. At the south end of the park, this road first runs along the north end of Blue Lake (which is not part of the state park). It then goes to the far side of Park Lake and runs north, eventually merging with the main entrance. It allows for a close up look at the 400 foot cliffs. Caution: This road is normally barricaded just a quarter mile north of the Sun Village resort. You cannot enter the park from here, nor exit onto Hwy 17 coming from the park. You can drive up to the barricade on either side, but not cross (to prevent thru traffic).

Do[edit]

The overlook at Dry Falls gives a spectacular view on a clear day. One small section that can only hold a few people is so close to the edge, it may make you dizzy. There are railings throughout the area, though small children must be closely watched and supervised.

At Sun Lakes there is an RV park and a golf course next to the lake. Tent camping and privately-owned cabin rentals are also available. Powerboats (5 mph max) can be rented or brought in by trailer. (Use caution on the steep downhill roadway.) Bicycling is very popular at the park. There's a 2.6-mile (4.2-km) loop trail around Umatilla Rock.

Understand[edit]

A Washington State Discover Pass is required for all private vehicles entering the park (except for through passage on Highway 17). This includes the parking lot at Dry Falls just off the highway.

Go next[edit]

  • Lake Lenore Caves State Park (about 11 miles south of the Sun Lakes entrance.).
  • Grand Coulee Dam
Routes through Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park
BrewsterCoulee City  N WA-17.svg S  Soap LakeMoses Lake


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