Skagit River Rafting
The Skagit River is the 2nd longest river in Washington State and is set in a beautiful mountain valley. Ambling emerald currents sprinkled with rapids converge with lush ancient growth forests on our Upper Skagit River Whitewater Rafting trips. This is a great introduction to whitewater for thrill-seekers and adventurers alike.
If thrilling whitewater isn't quite what you're looking for, witness the circle of life first hand on our Class I Salmon & Bald Eagle Float trips. Spawning salmon create the incentive for hundreds of bald eagles from Alaska and Canada to converge on the river valley. Marvel at the natural beauty and wildlife wonders as you travel this 10 mile stretch of the Skagit River. These trips usually last about 4 hours and are available December, January, and February.
Raft coming into a Class II rapid on the Upper Skagit River
Upper Skagit Whitewater
• Season: July-August
The Upper Skagit River is located in the Ross Lake National Recreation area of North Cascades National Park. Another beautiful and moderate whitewater trip for the family, this river is a great destination for the summer time. There are plenty of things to see and do outdoors in the surrounding areas including winery tours, blueberry picking farms, hiking, canoeing, and many beautiful waterfalls. Be sure to stop in at the North Cascades National Park Visitor Center just past our boat launch at Goodell Creek for additional information on area activities. This whitewater rafting trip offers astounding views just outside the North Cascades National Park.
The upper section of the Skagit River is rated as Class II-III and is good for ages 6 and over. A moderate amount of whitewater is enhanced by the overwhelming presence of nature on this 10 mile rafting journey. The mountain scenery and abundant waterfowl make this a perfect nature-lover's outing and one that is a great trip for the whole family. There are plenty of oppurtunities to go swimming and even a big rock to jump from if the water levels are right. This trip meets near the small town of Marblemount, WA. For meeting location information for Upper Skagit whitewater rafting trips, see the Information & Maps page. Review our Skagit River rafting rates, then make your reservation today!
Bald Eagle & Salmon Float
• Season: November - February
Join us for Alpine Adventures' tour of the wildlife-protected-section of the Skagit River. This river, from Marblemount to Rockport, is managed by a coalition of agencies, including the U.S. Forest Service, the Washington State Department of Fish & Wildlife, Skagit County, and the Nature Conservancy. This ten mile tour includes rafting through the Bald Eagle Sanctuary.
The Bald Eagles along the Skagit have migrated from the mountains and coastal areas of the Pacific Northwest. These birds congregate around an abundance of food - like the dead, spawned-out salmon. The salmon runs begin earlier in the rivers of Alaska and British Columbia, so the eagles migrate there first and then move south as the runs of salmon enter the rivers down here in Washington. The largest concentration of Bald Eagles in North America is in Alaska on the Chilkat River where over 750 eagles have been counted. The Bald Eagles wintering on the Skagit River and nearby Nooksack River comprise the largest gathering of Bald Eagles in the lower 48 states. In 2007, 537 Bald Eagles were counted in this area by the official bird counters of the US Forest Service. See these amazing birds for yourself!
The Skagit River valley region is also significant for its Native American history and culture. Pacific Northwest area tribes often centered around a river. The Skagit, which takes its name from two distinct bands, the Upper Skagit and Lower Skagit, is believed to have been a significant trade route to exchange goods from the salt water ocean and dense forests with the resources of the semi-arid climate of eastern Washington. Archeologists recently discovered evidence of indigenous people utilizing this region for fishing, hunting and gathering as far back as 8,000 years ago. While mountain trails were used by hunters, the river was a feasible way to travel and connect people. You can experience the magic of the Skagit as you float down the same river used by these tribal people. Join us and discover the abundance and unique interconnectedness of salmon and eagles. Determine if you believe, as these Native Americans believed, that animals can teach life lessons and offer inspiration. The salmon is thought to symbolize instinct, strength and determination, whereas the eagle symbolizes freedom, protective power, and courage.
Accommodations for rafting on the Skagit River
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