The Great Northern

Following US‑2 through wide-open spaces is guaranteed to bring new meaning to the expression “getting away from it all.”

Newport

Northeast of Spokane, US-2 crosses a few miles of suburban sprawl before winding through 35 miles of beautiful forested uplands and occasional crossroads communities on the Idaho border. Straddling the state line, Newport (pop. 2,126) began as a small trading post on the Idaho side in 1889, then moved to Washington when the Great Northern Railroad arrived in 1892. The original town site, overlooking the Pend Oreille (pronounced “PON-doo-ray”) River, holds the business district, while the railroad legacy still defines much of the main part of town. Two depots face each other along US-2 at the south end of the three-block main street, Washington Avenue, one holding the offices of a lumber company, the other housing the small but enjoyable Pend Oreille County Museum (402 South Washington Ave., daily May-Oct., donations), which has farming and mining artifacts—plus a pencil collection.

Pend Oreille County Museum (402 S. Washington Ave.)