Facts and Figures

Total geographic area:  24,040 acres located seven miles along the easternmost shores of Lake Chelan

Major cities and towns:  Chelan 4,108, Manson 1,468.  During the summer months the population around the lake swells to over 25,000

Lake Chelan is the third deepest lake in the United States (after Crater Lake and Lake Tahoe) at 1486’ deep.  The bottom of the lake is about 386’ below sea level.  The lake is 52 miles long and 1 mile wide at its widest point.

Total Vineyard acreage: 275 acres

Number of vineyards:  31

Number of Wineries and Tasting Rooms:  31

First commercial grapes planted in 1998: Merlot, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay

Major Varieties Grown (acres):

  • Syrah (47)
  • Pinot Noir (24)
  • Chardonnay (22)
  • Merlot (22)
  • Riesling (20)
  • Pinot Gris (15)
  • Viognier (12)
  • Cabernet Franc (12)
  • Cabernet Sauvignon (11)
  • malbec (10)

Unique and Unusual Varieties in the Valley:  Aglianico, Clairette Blanche, Dolcetto, Muscadelle du Bordelois

Major Soil type: Pumiceous gravelly sandy loam, heavily influenced by glaciation from the Continental Ice Sheet and volcanic activity from nearby Glacier Peak  (42 miles distant)

Average Lake Temperature: 60.5° F

  Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
 Average High Temperature: 34 40 51 61 70 77 85 85 76 61 44 33
 Average Low Temperature: 24 27 33 40 48 55 61 60 51 41 32 24
Average Precipitation (In): 1.57 1.3 .91 .63 .98 .87 .35 .31 .35 .79 1.77 1.57
Average Snowfall (In): 7 3 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 9

Lake Chelan AVA Average Growing Degree Days (>50° F): 3023 – this compares to Red Mountain (3191), Walla Walla (2841), Yakima Valley (2663), Wahluke Slope (2948) and Columbia Gorge (3175)

From Wikipedia: 
“The climate of the Lake Chelan AVA is influenced by the lake itself which creates a “lake effect” that moderates temperatures throughout the growing season and protects against frost damage in winter by re-radiating heat absorbed during the summer in the later months of fall and winter. This has an effect of extending the “hang time” of the fruit on the vine which allows sugars and acids in the grape to stay in balance as phenols develop that can add complexity to the wine.[6] The AVA is located in north-central Washington, on the eastern half of the state in the Columbia Valley. The Lake Chelan region has a higher elevation and unique soil components that differentiate the area from other wine regions of the Columbia Valley located to the south.[4]”