Chief Joseph Dam is located in north central Washington state, just upstream from the town of Bridgeport. You will find it where Washington Highway 17 crosses the Columbia River. Visitors are invited to begin their visit to the dam at the Orientation Area. There you will find interpretive displays and brochures which will guide you on your exciting journey.
For a tour of the dam itself, cross the Columbia River, take the first left, and follow the signs to the Powerhouse.
Below are 3 sets of directions, some recommendations, and two maps to help you.
- From Wenatchee: Drive east on US Highway 2 for 13 miles, and then north on US Highway 97 for 57 miles. Turn right (east) on Washington Highway 17 for 8 miles until you see Chief Joseph Dam. Turn left shortly before the Columbia River Bridge and begin your visit at the Orientation Area recreation site.
- From Spokane: Drive west on US Highway 2 for 97 miles until you arrive at Washington Highway 17 past Coulee City. (Note: Washington Highway 17 joins US Highway 2 for two miles before turning north.) Follow Washington Highway 17 north for 40 miles until you reach Bridgeport. Continue driving across the Columbia River Bridge, where you should turn right and begin your visit at the Orientation Area recreation site.
- From Penticton, BC: Travel south on Canadian Highway 97, for 35 miles to the US border. Continue south on US Highway 97 through Oroville and Omak for 76 miles. Turn left (east) onto Washington Highway 17 for 8 miles. Turn left just before the Columbia River Bridge to begin your visit at the Orientation Area recreation site.
As you approach the dam, tune your AM radio to 1610. The radio broadcast will familiarize you with the history of the dam as well as recreation opportunities in the area.
The Corps of Engineers Project Office is located are on the south shore of the Columbia River.