Washington State


River rafting inspires drifting lazily in the sun or battling whitewater. Whether to float or get that adrenaline rush is more a question of time of year. Snowmelt in spring brings rushing courses of rapids up to Class V’s. Calmed by summer, the same rivers are gentle rides, home to salmon, the bald eagle, and blue heron. Rain and rising water in the fall turns rivers into rushing whitewater again. Every September, the Rimrock Dam in the Yakima Valley is opened on a schedule, forcing the Tieton River to rise into fast action. The season is short, usually lasting just two to three weekends.

For floats on Washington rivers, contact Alpine Adventures (800-926-7238,