Washington October 29, 2016
We Dare You To Take This Road Trip To Washington’s Most Abandoned Places
Washington may be fairly “new” compared to some of our other states, but it’s not without its history. You’ll find ghost towns and abandoned buildings all over this great state, and this road trip was designed to show you some of the most interesting options. These places go from west to east and back, but you’re welcome to take the trip in reverse or add your own stops.
1. Nike Missile Site, Redmond
Redmond’s Nike Missile Site is fascinating. During the Cold War, the nuclear-tipped missiles here were our last defense against a Soviet attack. The site was decommissioned in 1974, and many buildings remain intact.
Next, head east to Liberty, a small ghost town north of Ellensburg. Liberty is considered to be the oldest mining town in the state and the founder Thomas Meager’s cabin is still standing.
3. Govan Schoolhouse
The Govan schoolhouse was once the place where children of railway workers would go for their education. It hasn’t been in use for the better part of a century, but somehow the creepy building still remains standing.
Drive a bit further east and you’ll find Sherman, an abandoned town from the late 1800s. Not much of the town remains, but you’ll be able to see the remnants of a few century-old buildings.
You’ll find what remains of Elberton in southeast Whitman County. Founded in 1886, the town was a popular place in the late 1800s, but the population dwindled to nothing during the Great Depression. The railroad bridges, cemetery and United Brethren Church are all that remain.
6. Highway 26 and I-90
Drive west toward I-90 and you’ll see plenty of old abandoned buildings, especially old barns and houses. You’ll pass LaCrosse, Washtucna and other old farming communities.
If you’re up for a little hike, end your trip with a visit to Lester. This old railroad town from 1892 still has some abandoned buildings that are remarkably well-preserved despite their age. The road to reach it is closed to cars, so you'll have to walk for about two miles to get there.
Washington has so many hidden places worth exploring. Here’s a more detailed explanation of the history of Lester.