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3 New Things to Try in Central Washington

July 20, 2023

Challenge yourself by participating in a few of Central Washington’s signature activities! An outdoorsman’s paradise, Central Washington offers an adventure for every person and skill level. Add these three locations and activities to your bucket list and check them off when you visit Central Washington!

FISHING MATTOON LAKE - ELLENSBURG

Mattoon Lake is a great place to take the family for a fun day of fishing and is a favorite among locals. Catch 8- to 14-inch rainbow trout as well as largemouth bass, perch and other species with boat fishing or bank fishing. Pack a picnic to enjoy on the dock and enjoy a peaceful day spent on the water.

HIKING RED TOP MOUNTAIN - CLE ELUM

Climb Red Top Mountain in Cle Elum to experience a rewarding, 1.7-mile roundtrip hike. The short, steep trail leads to a functioning fire lookout, built in 1952, as well as magnificent 360-degree views of Mount Rainier, Teanaway Ridge, the Stuart Range, Chelan and Entiat Mountains, and even Mount Adams on a clear day. The trail is steep, but short and easy to follow making the hike perfect for all skill levels, including kids! Enjoy an assortment of colorful wildflowers that line the trail as you make your way up the mountain toward the lookout for breathtaking views.

The lookout is typically staffed by volunteers in the summer months and is generally open to visitors from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. If the lookout is open, it offers visitors a look at the many resources used to spot wildfires including maps of the area and technology that assists in locating the fires.

BIKING JOE WATT CANYON - THORP

Mountain biking at Joe Watt Canyon offers a 10-mile ride with a 2,803 ft. descent. Find beautifully vibrant wildflowers, outstanding views and a ride with the perfect level of intensity for beginners. The potential route options are numerous so visitors can often make their way down through the trail without encountering other bikers or hikers. Post ride, stop by the Thorp Fruit stand for a healthy snack and a refreshing beverage to cool off with!
The lookout is typically staffed by volunteers in the summer months and is generally open to visitors from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. If the lookout is open, it offers visitors a look at the many resources used to spot wildfires including maps of the area and technology that assists in locating the fires.

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