If you feel like buying a small town - river view included - you're in luck

Cub Crossland, 81, a lifelong resident of the Monse area, walks by the closed General Store on Saturday. The town is for sale by its owners, Fritz and Donna Van Doren of East Wenatchee.

The Associated Press
The Olympian


MONSE, WA -- For sale: Tiny mountain town with Okanogan River views. Asking price: $575,000.
For the last six months, this 60-acre town with only seven residents and no business or industry to speak of has been on the market.

"Right now, it's nearly a ghost town," said Jay Roberson, an agent with Laura Mounter Real Estate, which has the listing.

In late December, the northern California town of Bridgeville -- 80 acres, 13 homes and a cemetery -- sold for almost $1.8 million on the online auction site, eBay.

Monse (pronounced mahnz) sits on a placid stretch of the Okanogan River, seven miles northeast of Brewster in north-central Washington.

Selling points: Fiber optics, water rights, railroad access, a public boat launch, a bridge and bass fishing.

Fritz Van Doren, the town's owner since 1974, moved to East Wenatchee four years ago with his wife, Donna, and their three school-age children.

Roberson said the listing has generated about two calls a week. Prospective buyers have expressed interest in it as a potential summer camp or executive retreat, he said.

At the intersection of Monse Bridge Road and Monse River Road, the general store, built in 1914, stands on the northwest corner next to a dilapidated shack that used to be the post office.

The store's been closed since 1968, but the building has a fiber-optic terminal because it's near a large array of telecommunications satellite dishes, Van Doren said.

Lifelong area residents Cub Crossland, 81, and Jean Reese, 82, remember when Monse was popular for rodeos and country dances.

They said they couldn't recall more than 15 people living in Monse.

"It seemed like everybody was too poor to go anywhere else," Crossland said.

But Roberson said Monse was home to about 700 people at its peak. "It was a steamboat stop in the late 1800s," he said.


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