Dry Falls State Park. Credit: UltraView Admin/Flickr CC
Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park, Coulee City
Dry Falls, the heart of this unique park, may look like an ordinary scalloped precipice (for us non-geologists, that’s a very tall, crescent-shaped cliff). But if you imagine what was happening here 13,000 years ago during the Missoula Floods, you get quite a different picture. When it was an actual waterfall, Dry Falls was 10 times the size of Niagara Falls. All that water carved the basalt valley below where Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park and campground sites bask in the sun amid the rolling hills of sagebrush. There’s plenty of room for camping here, with 96 standard sites plus 41 utility spaces. The park offers loads of family recreation, from horseshoe pits and miniature golf to swimming and fishing.
Do: The park’s interpretive center is loaded with learning opportunities about the Missoula floods and how they shaped much of the Pacific Northwest landscape. Dry Falls is an important stop along the Ice Age Floods National Geologic Trail, the first of its kind in the United States.
Reservations: Book online.
Next stop: Steamboat Rock
Image credit: UltraView Admin/Flickr CC