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Old 08-30-2011, 07:05 PM  
Ceg
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Report: Exploring Columbia River Road Trip: I-90 to the Vernita Bridge - Aug 2011

Exploring Columbia River Road Trip: I-90 to the Vernita Bridge.
By Clay Graham / Eastern Washington Adventures


Wanapum Dam (Photo by Clay Graham / Eastern Washington Adventures)

On the morning of Monday August 22nd, 2011 we left Wanapum State Park campground from our Eastern Washington Adventures Exploring Vantage Road Trip. I this day we set out to see some sites a long the Columbia River. Our first place to check out was the boat launch next to the Wanapum State Park campground. The boat launch had plenty of paved parking and looked like a good place to launch from.

Next we headed over the I-90 bridge to get on the other side of the Columbia River. We turned off the Freeway and followed the Columbia River south. Not far we stopped at Sand Hollow South. This is a free place to access to the water of the Columbia River. I believe it is owned by Grant County PUD. After a quick view we headed on down river toward the Wanapum Dam.

Wanapum Dam was very cool. They have a Heritage Center Museum you can go into free. Inside you can learn a lot of history about the area and the people who live there years ago. The kids really got a lot out of our visit to Wanapum Dam. We are hoping to set up an Eastern Washington Adventures "Group guided tour" to see the how the dam works. Details will be posted on our web site under Up-coming Events/Event Planning.

We headed down river passing the Beverly Dunes ORV Area turn off. We did not stop at because I had an ORV run planned for Beverly Dunes ORV Area the next day.

On down the river we drove around checking out Mattawa, Desert Aire and Priest Rapids Dam. Priest Rapids Dam is close to the public so we did not see much.

Our last stop at the Columbia River was at the Vernita Safety Rest Area next to the Vernita Bridge. We had lunch at the rest area before heading to Explore the Lower Yakima Valley.

See full report with 60 pictures at: Exploring Columbia River Road Trip: I-90 to the Vernita Bridge - Aug 22 2011
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Old 08-30-2011, 10:15 PM  
mohel
 
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That looks like a great trip. Touring Bonneville Dam was magnificent.

"We headed down river passing the Beverly Dunes ORV Area turn off."

I spent a week at another sandy "Beverly" on the coast. Some kind of NW sand thing?

Seriously, where did that sand come from so far inland? Did all those reincarnations of Great Lake Missoula grind so much rock it created dunes?
Report: Exploring Columbia River Road Trip: I-90 to the Vernita Bridge - Aug 2011-coastcamping-044.jpg 

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Old 08-30-2011, 10:28 PM  
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Originally Posted by blucher View Post
That looks like a great trip. Touring Bonneville Dam was magnificent.

"We headed down river passing the Beverly Dunes ORV Area turn off."

I spent a week at another sandy "Beverly" on the coast. Some kind of NW sand thing?

Seriously, where did that sand come from so far inland? Did all those reincarnations of Great Lake Missoula grind so much rock it created dunes?
Kind of weird to see places with the same name. We found a Blue Lake near Mount St.Helens. We go to the Blue Lake at the Ahtanum State Forest a lot.

This inland sand is different than the ocean sand I have wheeled in. You do not need to air down as far to get around at Beverly, Moses Lake or Juniper Dunes. It is still a lot of fun.
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Old 08-31-2011, 12:44 PM  
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This inland sand is different than the ocean sand I have wheeled in. You do not need to air down as far to get around at Beverly, Moses Lake or Juniper Dunes. It is still a lot of fun.
Just a guess but since it sounds more closely packed it may be glacial in origin the result of great grinding forces over millions of years.
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