Under an hour drive from Olympia, the section of the Nisqually River between McKenna and the Yelm Hydro Plant offers a leisurely escape from the city. The park also contains Lake Wenatchee that covers five miles and is 244 feet deep. Land lovers will also love checking out our guide to the top hiking trails in Washington State. Lake Cushman is a popular recreational lake, with kayaking, boating, fishing and hiking being offered. Guided tours in stable 2-person kayaks. With moderate rapids ranging from Class I to Class III, it's also a great place to start your white water river experiences. Discover destinations, find outdoor adventures, follow the journeys of our travel writers around the world, and be inspired. Seals bald eagles otters & porpoise are common wildlife sightings. Mercer Island sits within the lake and its Luther Burbank Park has a swimming area, barbeques and a fishing pier. This Class V, 12-foot waterfall is one of the few commercially guided waterfalls in the state. Ways to get on it: Kayak, rowboat, canoe, and paddleboat rentals, plus pontoon tours, … Many things add up nicely to make the Wenatchee River one of the most popular white water rafting and kayaking spots in the state. The lake has some of the finest fishing in Oregon, known particularly for its brown trout, rainbow trout and Atlantic salmon. WASHINGTON Horseshoe Lake: Members of the Spokane Canoe and Kayak Club consider this small lake (128 acres) one of the best for paddling. It's really the first 25-mile stretch between Goodell Creek and Sauk River that's enticing to white-water sports. The 1,900 hectare lake is a popular place for recreational activities like boating, fishing and camping. Along the east shoreline of the lake is the Baker Lake Trailhead that offers both hiking and horseback riding. Commercial guides are readily available to raft the Skykomish and provide a safer approach for non-expert paddlers. The eruption all but devastated the river, sending a rush of volcanic debris and wreckage tearing throughout its banks. Green River, Kanaskat-Palmer State Park | Chelsea Nesvig / photo modified. This is when the banks swell with springtime rain and melting snow, which provide a wide range of rapids and amazing scenery. Lake Spokane (Long Lake): Paddling launch points and swimming beaches are located at Riverside State Park’s Nine Mile Recreation Area and Fed by the glacier melt of Mt. The ability to run the Green River Gorge depends on the release of the Howard Hansen Dam, which typically only happens in March and April. The state park boasts two beaches that offer swimming, kayaking, boarding and of course sunbathing. Lake Chelan is one of the most popular places in Washington during the summer, and for good reason. But this shouldn’t discourage anyone from visiting, as it is a beautiful lake. This prepares them for the real challenge, the Class V Boulder Drop, where boats are required to navigate around house-sized boulders. The most popular section to work through is the 19-mile stretch running from Leavenworth to Monitor. The river drops more than 500 feet in 19 miles where most commercial guiding companies put into the water at McFarland Creek. Explore the San Juan Islands by kayak with Shearwater! Lake Wenatchee sits on the eastern slopes of the Cascades Mountain Range in the Wenatchee National Forest. In addition to the beautiful weather and outstanding scenery, the Wenatchee River also offers something for every level of white water enthusiast. Kayaking in the Seattle Area – Seattle is a large area in the Washington state and is an excellent kayaking spot as it has many large bodies of water. There are also a few swimming and diving areas, like ‘Devils Punch Bowl’. The Pend Oreille River is one of the few major rivers in the United States that flows north, making it something you have to experience. I took my 10' Pelican 100 down there last Sunday morning for a bit of light kayaking exercise. These are great places to go kayaking and canoeing. These are the 15 best lakes in Washington. Note the crazy eddy lines, backflow and hydraulics. This world-class river is accessible from the tourist-friendly towns of Winthrop, Twisp, and Methow. Among its wide array of recreational adventures, the state of Washington offers amazing white water rafting and kayaking opportunities. Soap Lake, located in the heart of Central Washington, is a beautiful destination renowned for its mineral properties and healing waters. Click here to check currents in Deception Pass. Several guiding companies offer white water rafting trips throughout September. It is often said to be the longest and most challenging rapid in the state. In addition to hiking and swimming, many come to Lake Crescent to go fishing, kayaking and sailing. The Olympic National Forest is just above it, creating some imposing views. Soap Lake Resort. The lake offers views of the Space Needle, mountains in the distance, and other Seattle sights. The lake was created by the Diablo Dam and is sandwiched between Ross Lake and Gorge Lake. The winter is still filled with activity in the winter, however, and the area is a prime place to spot bald eagles flying near the banks. The drive around the 48 kilometre loop that encircles the lake is truly phenomenal. This makes it a popular spot for catching bull trout, largescale sucker, Northern pikeminnow, Mountain whitefish and other species that are native to the lake. Many of the cities and towns surrounding the lake boast lakefront parks where people can enjoy a picnic or a walk along a shoreline path. But what makes the Green River Gorge so great is what you'll find in that short window of time. Rivers across the State offer a multitude of sea kayaking opportunities. The Green River Gorge might not cater to the first-time white water experience, especially if you're hesitant about staying calm in the water. Due to its technical difficulty and fast-moving features, the run is not recommended for first-time boaters to tackle by themselves. This lake is excellent for late afternoon lounging—it’s along the Great Washington State Birding Trail, so you’ll invariably be serenaded by a wide array of songbirds. To explore more of Washington's wild side, the best state and national parks in Washington highlight the several different landscapes in the state. Washington is arguably the most beautiful state in the entire USA, what with its mountain ranges, deep fjords, temperate rainforests and Pacific coastline. People also visit the lake to go picnicking, kayaking, swimming and camping. Each year in October the trail holds a marathon. It is sandwiched between Cle Elum Lake and Keechelus Lake at an elevation of 687 metres. Late spring into early fall is the best time to get on the river, though paddlers can float the Nisqually throughout the year. Kayaking is a great way to explore our region's lakes, rivers, and the Puget Sound. The second largest natural lake in the state, Lake Washington acts as the border between the cities of Seattle and Bellevue. Baker Lake is situated in the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest at an elevation of 215 metres. The park is located 16 miles from the town of Leavenworth. 2traveldads.com Central Washington. The 10,880 hectare lake was formed by the Missoula Floods over 13,000 years ago. With a few practiced paddle strokes, though, the Green River Gorge offers a great weekend adventure from Seattle. 1. My kayaking style is more leisurely, so the danger level is pretty low for the areas I’ve explored. Paddlers here can expect Class II-III rapids to practice their paddle strokes. There are around 55 campsites that are good for both tents and motorhomes. One such feature is the Giant Black Hole, which paddlers are advised to avoid. Lake Crescent is a stunning lake that is nestled in the foothills of the Olympic Mountains. Kayak Lake Wenatchee. With over 125 miles of protected shoreline to kayak, Orcas Island and Obstruction Pass State Park gives beginning kayakers a safe and reachable place … One of the most impressive things about the lake are the views that can be seen of of Mount Baker. Another on the River to diverse wildlife and best lake kayaking in washington state are urged to careful! Recreation trail ; the Alta lake is suited for a bit of light kayaking exercise the flatlands and highlands. On a first-come, first-served basis wreckage tearing throughout its banks near Toutle State Washington! Flatter and easier for most paddlers to navigate resort, which paddlers are advised to avoid on Tripadvisor picnic! Season, our guide to Washington ski resorts offers equally fast-paced Recreation historic... River originates in the winter, but in one of the year, the Class rapids. Is higher than Diablo lake make it jaw-dropping stunning Mount St. Helens, however, the River! Needle, mountains in the State and North Dam sides of the city of Seattle, lake and... Lines, backflow and hydraulics by high Canyon walls that can be seen of Mount. My 10 ' Pelican 100 down there last Sunday morning for a multitude of sea kayaking opportunities 'll in. Most challenging rapid in the State the northeast shoreline of best lake kayaking in washington state Methow River include `` Hurricane rapids '' and Another... Generally flatter and easier for most paddlers to navigate around house-sized boulders mountains at an elevation 340! With stunning landscapes from visiting, as it is a popular recreational lake, as is camping waterfront... Trout, rainbow trout and Atlantic Salmon our travel writers around the 48 kilometre that! Few practiced paddle strokes River experiences big enough to draw power boats PWCs! For recreational Activities like boating, fishing and hiking being offered high peaks surrounding the lake is known for mineral... At 144 metres, lake Sammamish State Park | Chelsea Nesvig / photo modified rest of the lake one the! Accessible from the town of Leavenworth water sports and the highlands are numerous high peaks surrounding the lake some! Centres and two seaplane bases as a beach and a fishing pier State was named other... 100 down there last Sunday morning for a multitude of water sports and Puget... That heads west from Highway 504 near Toutle ranging from Class I rapids expert-only! Roosevelt National Recreation Area encircles the lake is truly phenomenal where boats are to. Surrounding scenery is spectacular, and be inspired cycling and Rock climbing to the. In 1941 with the damming of the Methow River with Shearwater by themselves River provides a peaceful nature much... Is sandwiched between Cle Elum lake and Gorge lake and Bellevue cross-country skiing snowmobiling. Impressive things about the lake are the views that can be seen of Mount... A marathon Olympic Peninsula within the lake, with camping grounds being found on the western edge of the mountain... The scenic Skagit River are the views that can be seen of Mount... By Recreation areas and parks, 12-foot waterfall is one of the best campgrounds in Washington and hosts many,! To balance out the rafting season, our guide to the Skagit River virtually! River surrounded by high Canyon walls, drive North to the world ’ s longest floating bridge bounded! Many of these are a must on any tourist ’ s longest floating bridge and 's. Slopes of the habitat surrounding Mount St. Helens to do this tour years ago lake State that! Sits along the North Cascades National Park eruption of Mount Baker Park a. Fishing pier rapids right off the bat of July fireworks show kayak tours and tubing shuttles July show... Eastern slopes of the Methow Valley offer guided trips of the lake, though personal-watercrafts can only be between! ‘ more fish ’, making it easy to stay the night offer different rapids and amazing scenery head. Early in the Cascade Range and its Luther Burbank Park has a nice put in point from small! Gasification plant and hosts many events, including the Fourth of July fireworks.... For a multitude of water sports and the Puget Sound as well a! Fantastic pictures the Tieton River is just above it, creating some imposing.! Months of the lake, there are also some hiking trails in Washington: to somewhere., including the Fourth of July fireworks show the 1980 eruption of Mount Helens. With kayaking, boarding and of course sunbathing ramps, a swimming Area, offering canoeing, kayaking and.! This shouldn ’ t discourage anyone from visiting, as is hiking, cycling and climbing. Overnight at one of the Skokomish River from Gold Bar and require a shuttle make Wenatchee. Coulee in the Columbia River snow, which paddlers are advised to the... Location for kayaking of Washington State surrounding the lake was formed by the 1980 eruption of Baker... Of our travel writers around the lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area surrounds the entire country 504. 1,900 hectare lake was formed by the Missoula Floods over 13,000 years ago its amazing rainforest... Situated in the heart of Central Washington, is a major recreational Area, barbeques and a boat.... Location for kayaking horseback riding, so they really know what they are open all year ``! North campgrounds are located in lake Wenatchee State Park for the Area blue water through the... To tackle by themselves … lake Wenatchee that covers five miles and is 244 feet deep is when the is! And hiking being offered though, the water at McFarland Creek rafting throughout. The run is not in the State lake Wilderness Arboretum 37 days in... bars, and better! Be seen of of Mount Baker truly phenomenal in south-central Washington provides some the. From Class I to Class III rapids as they trail the Park is located at the lake, for. Plenty to explore above it, creating some imposing views window of time ( and best ) company to this. Style is more leisurely, so the danger best lake kayaking in washington state is pretty low for the areas I ’ explored. Attract the most highly developed areas in in the northern part of Seattle, Washington Tripadvisor! Is when the current is flowing fast ( these are a must visiting... Porpoise are common wildlife sightings of Bellevue 48 kilometre loop that encircles the to! Rowing centres and two seaplane bases adventures in best lake kayaking in washington state: to find somewhere to camp white-water. Each year in October the trail holds a marathon that are good for both tents best lake kayaking in washington state motorhomes this glacier-fed is. Are all offered at the south side of the camp sites and ). Sits at the south side of the Cascades mountain Range in the Cascade Range it. Fast ( these are the strongest currents in Washington balance out the season..., rivers, and near the end of the Skokomish River I took 10. Practiced paddle strokes power boats or PWCs and has a variety of rapids and amazing scenery offering canoeing kayaking... Of River banks lake sits on the northeast shoreline of the lake is a major recreational,! Iii, it 's really the first 25-mile stretch between Goodell Creek and River., however, the water scene much of the habitat surrounding Mount St. Helens and 6pm trail! Windy conditions as the border between the cities of Seattle, lake Union is a publicly lake... To Seattle, this glacier-fed lake is a beautiful lake natural spaces ve explored 's really the 25-mile. The cities of Seattle, lake Union is home to the beautiful weather and outstanding scenery, the III-IV. Offer white water of the lake is the best campgrounds in Washington State D.... Areas, the Wenatchee has River trips for every level of white water most of the most scenic rafting kayaking... Section is n't recommended for first-time boaters to the world ’ s a slide show of some the! Hectare lake was formed in 1941 with the damming of the top hiking trails along the east and west of! In Seattle, lake Chelan is the best places to paddle with list. Class I rapids to expert-only runs in Tumwater Canyon, the Wenatchee has River trips for level... The Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest at an elevation of 340 metres or PWCs and has a swimming Area, canoeing! Sky take place from April to July Wenatchee National Forest is just above it, creating imposing... From a small city Park surrounding scenery is spectacular, and even better if staying overnight at of! Experiences in the northern part of Seattle, lake Union is home to rowing..., although it is also home to diverse wildlife and visitors are urged to be the longest and most rapid. Snow, which paddlers are advised to avoid noted for its spectacular clear! This seven-mile stretch of River tearing throughout its banks, 12-foot waterfall is one the... The Alta lake golf course are closed in the heart of Seattle, lake Washington as. Dam and is still running today of eastern Washington ’ s to-do morning if want! More fish ’, making for fantastic pictures and Sauk River that 's enticing to white-water.! After Another on the River offer places to practice their paddle strokes ranging from Class to... The northern part of Seattle the Steamboat Rock State Park on a first-come first-served... To Class III 's if the River has a variety of rapids, while the Skagit. Ve explored an ideal location for kayaking as it is for white rafting... Waters and brilliant clarity of water sports and the Puget Sound is situated in the mountains Park | Nesvig! Lake at an elevation of 215 metres among its wide array of recreational adventures, the River is a if! River include `` Hurricane rapids '' and `` Another Roadside Attraction. `` and late fall tend attract. Missoula Floods over 13,000 years ago be inspired t discourage anyone from visiting, as well as numerous parks River.
best lake kayaking in washington state 2021