The town of Cle Elum is less than four square miles, but it has a rich history to offer. The town was settled in the late 1800s and supported coal mining and lumber operations. However, in 1918, a blaze swept through the town, destroying 29 city blocks, 30 businesses, and 205 houses. Much of the town was rebuilt quickly with the help of generous neighbors in the state, but you can still see some architecture from the 19th century in town.
One popular attraction in Cle Elum pays homage to the city's roots: Swiftwater Cellars Winery was built near the entrance to the Roslyn No. 9 mineshaft, which operated from 1930 to 1963. This winery is decorated with mining relics, and it even named a line of their wines after the mine. Swiftwater Cellars offers premium international wines, fine dining, and a Summer Concert Series with live music on Friday and Saturday nights.
Today, Cle Elum has nine city parks, including a disc golf course. Horseback riding is a popular pastime in the area, and several outfitters stand ready to take you on a ride down local trails. Speelyi Beach, at the southern end of Cle Elum Lake, is a favorite spot in the summer. The lake is part of the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, and visitors can use powered or manual watercraft here. The backdrop of the forested mountains makes this lake a particularly breathtaking place to enjoy the beach. And the temperate nature of the region-average highs reach only 80 degrees Fahrenheit in July and August-means that it is never too hot to venture from your beach house for a day at the beach.
The Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest offers endless exploration. It encompasses over 4 million acres of unspoiled nature along the eastern slopes of the Cascade Mountains. There are hundreds of miles of trails for hiking, hunting, fishing, horseback riding, mountain biking, rock climbing, and skiing. Any outdoor adventure you can imagine is possible in this national park, just across the threshold of Cle Elum beach houses.