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Local Native American lore claims that the name Wenatchee (Wa-Nat-Chee) derives from a poetic description of the area meaning "robe of the rainbow." The valley's lush panorama is poetic majesty indeed. Resting at 600 feet above sea level, Wenatchee is surrounded by the Central Cascades Mountain Range. This line of stunningly dramatic peaks, which climb to elevations of just under 10,000 feet, soars above the rooftops like a massive, densely furrowed wall, studded with rock out-croppings. Irrigation allows fecund vegetation to flourish along river banks and well into the more than one hundred miles of forest land which courses along the eastern crest of the Cascades. Although rich in volcanic soils, the Wenatchee Valley proved too arid for commercial agronomy until the turn of the last century. Despite the annual snowfall, which totals about 35 inches, Wenatchee boasts roughly 300 days of sunshine throughout the year.