Beacon Rock

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Standing 850 feet above the mighty Columbia river, this rock, originally called Che-che-op-tin ('the navel of the world') by Native Americans, was first dubbed 'Beacon Rock' by Lewis & Clark in the journal of their 1805 expedition.

This core (or 'plug') of an ancient volcano, was exposed to plain view by wind and water erosion and has stood for thousands of years as a reliable milestone on the way to the Pacific Ocean, 150 miles away.

This is the second largest free standing monolith in the northern hemisphere after Gibraltar.

In the early part of the 20th century, conservationist Henry J. Biddle purchased the rock and build a trail to the top. In 1935 Biddle's heirs donated the rock to the State of Washington. With additional development by the Civilian Conservation Corps Beacon Rock has been used as a State park ever since.