Vacations To Go


Memorial Day Ghosts


Day 1 Saturday May 25th  
8:00 a.m. Depart: Spokane  
    (Take Hwy 2. Just outside Wilbur go right on Hwy 21. Take the first left on Hwy 174. In Grand Coulee turn right on Spokane Way. Turn right on Federal Ave. At Midway turn right on Hwy 155.)  
9:30 a.m. Arrive: Grand Coulee 90
  Do: My first DAM Letterbox (Grand Coulee)  
    Grand Coulee Dam Visitor Center (9-5)  
10:00 a.m. Depart; Grand Coulee  
    (Turn right on Midway. It will become Hwy 155.)  
11:30 p.m. Arrive: Omak 73
  Do: Lunch  
12:30 p.m. Depart: Omak  
    (Turn right on Hwy 97/Hwy 20. It will become Hwy 97/20.)  
1:15 p.m. Arrive: Oroville 41
    (From Oroville, follow the signs from the intersection of Main and Central (at the gas station) towards Chesaw Road. Follow Chesaw Road for 10 miles until you see Molson Road on the left. Turn left onto Molson Road and follow it for 5 miles until you reach the town of Molson.)  
1:30 p.m. See:

Molson Ghost Town
(April-November daylight hours)
The once booming town of Molson was first founded in 1900. In only about a year, the population shot up to 300 and the town had a newspaper, stores, an attorney, doctor, saloon and hotel. It didn't last long, though - by 1901, the mining was failing, and the population fell to only 12 people. 

By 1905, it rose again with news of a railroad was being built. In the meantime, a local who ran a barn and stage line filed for a homestead that included most of the area in town. By 1909, he published a notice for everyone on the land to depart, causing citizens to found the site of New Molson about 1/2 mile north. If you walk through what's left of this town near the Canadian border in Okanogan County, you'll find an outdoor collection of pioneer buildings, farm machinery and incredible artifacts.

In 1935 the ore supply was finally exhausted, so the railroad stopped its route to Molson. Most of the residents moved. The outdoor museum exhibit was established in 1960.

Schoolhouse Museum
(Memorial-Labor Day 10-5, donations)
The school closed to students in 1969. It reopened as a museum in 1982. It is a living exhibit that continues to have items added to it each year. Volunteers, many of them lifelong residents of the area as well as past students and teachers give first hand accounts of Molson's history.

6:00 p.m. Depart: Molson  
    (Go back on Molson Rd/Hwy 4777. Turn right on Chesaw Rd. In Oroville it will go left. Cross the river and go right on Central. Turn left on Main St.)  
7:10 p.m. Arrive: Oroville, WA 15
    Camaray Motel
1320 Main St.
(AC, pool, DVD player, microwave, fridge, wifi, rooms with a Q, 2 Queens or a suite with King, 2 twins, futon and kitchen)


Day 2 Sunday May 26th  
9:00 a.m. Depart: Oroville  
    (Go left on Main St. Turn left again on Cental Ave. It will become Loomis/Oroville Rd. After it crosses the river, make an immediate left. It will go right and left. At the next junction take the right road.)  
9:25 a.m. See:
Nighthawk Ghost Town

Nighthawk located in Okanogan County, WA is one of the the oldest mining districts when Washington was still a territory with claims dating to 1860's.  By 1903 Nighthawk was a well established boom town with hotel, railroad depot, and saloon.

The town was officially platted in 1903 by the Nighthawk Reality Co. and named for the Nighthawk Mine.  By 1865 it was said 3,000 miners were living in a tent boom town.  The big producing mines in the Nighthawk District were the Nighthawk, Kaaba, Ruby Silver, Chopaka, Four Metals to name a few.  The most famous of these was the Ruby Silver Mine.  At one time there were six concentration mills operating in the Nighthawk area.  As with other boom towns in Washington over time the mines began to shutdown due to operating costs and drops in metal values.  The last mine to close in Nighthawk was the Kaaba Texas mine which operated from 1915 to 1951.

The Kaaba Texas remained one of Nighthawks best preserved mines until its remediation removal in 1999.

Many of the original structures that still stand in Nighthawk today date to 1903.

    (Go back across the right and turn right on Loomis/Oroville Rd. In town go right on Central. In Oroville go right on Main St which turns into Hwy 97.)  
12:00 p.m. Depart: Nighthawk  
    (Go back across the river turning right on the Loomis-Oroville Rd. It will become Central Ave.)  
12:15 p.m. Arrive: Oroville 13
    (Turn right on Hwy 97/Hwy 20.)  
1:00 p.m. Arrive: Omak 41
    (Continue on Hwy 97/Hwy 20. Cross the river and take a left on Hwy 155.)  
2:15 p.m. Arrive: Grand Coulee 73
    (Turn left on Grand Coulee/Hwy 174. Go right on Hwy 21. At Hwy 2 turn right. Turn left in 6.4 miles on Govan Rd.)  
2:45 p.m. Arrive: Govan. 25
  See: Govan Schoolhouse  
3:15 p.m. Depart: Govan  
    (Turn right on Govan to Hwy 2. Go back towards Wilbur.)  
3:25 p.m. Arrive: Wilbur 6.4
    (Continue on Hwy 2.)  
5:00 p.m. Arrive: Spokane 76