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Washington whitewater, Cowlitz River

Lewis county, Cispus River to Riffe Lake section whitewater kayaking, rafting, and paddling information.

 

CLASS III     9 miles
  The starting point is not too far from Longview-Kelso, if you're not familiar with the area there's a road map further down the page. The natural beauty of Washington and the beautiful way the water current moves down the stream are in themselves reasons enough to come here to paddle. Whitewater rafting and kayaking spots in Washington tend to be more challenging than the national average, so keep in mind that a large number of rivers in
    this state are not easy. Getting your paddling muscles activated and a chance to spend some time outdoors are great reasons to come. The nearby hotels are a bit away from the river, and if you make reservations in advance
you're all set. The campgrounds here at Cowlitz River are pretty good. The beauty of the Northern Cascade Range is a great plus for this river. This river system has a few good paddling stretches and the Cispus River to Riffe Lake section is one of them. This stretch of Cowlitz River is 9 miles long and has been rated as a class III section by American Whitewater. You might be into whitewater rafting or kayaking or both, doesn't matter,  
this is an area with plenty of spots for that. This section is long enough to enjoy a good non stop paddle, good for a one day paddling trip.

Briefly about the general area:
Cowlitz Falls is always fun to check out, and the Independence Pass Interpretive Trail is a great hiking trail close by. So many fun things in the Northern Cascade Range, just astonishing. There are plenty of folks from Glenoma here at Cowlitz River, and there is a perfect hiking trail close by called the Coldwater Trail. This river is a great place to visit. Summer at Cowlitz River arrives with high temperatures in the 70's.

Cowlitz River, Cispus River to Riffe Lake road map
Printable road map with the put-in and take-out locations clearly marked.

   

Map
map
Detailed Map


Stats
map
Stats for this river stretch


Weather
weather
Local weather forecast


OUTDOORS
These outdoors activities are available near Cowlitz River.
 Whitewater Near Cowlitz River:
Cowlitz River, Lewis County, 2 miles away
      Class III - 9 miles long (Cispus River to Riffe Lake)
Mineral Creek - North Fork, Lewis County, 11 miles away
      Class IV(V) - 6 miles long (Gale to Mineral Creek)
Mineral Creek, Lewis County, 12 miles away
      Class II - 5.5 miles long (North Fork to Alder Lake)
Tilton River, Lewis County, 12 miles away
      Class II-III - 8.5 miles long (Morton to Bremer)
Green River, Cowlitz County, 14 miles away
      Class III-IV - 11.7 miles long (Cascade Creek to gaging station)
Silver Creek, Lewis County, 15 miles away
      Class V - 4.5 miles long (Lynx Creek to Mary Kiona Park)
Toutle - South Fork, Cowlitz County, 16 miles away
      Class II-III - 11 miles long (Harrington Place to Big Wolf Creek)
Muddy River, Skamania County, 17 miles away
      Class II-III(IV) - 5.5 miles long (FR 25 Bridge to Lewis North Fork)
Little Nisqually River, Lewis County, 17 miles away
      Class IV+ - 5.7 miles long (Winston Creek to Alder Lake)
Hoffstadt Creek, Cowlitz County, 19 miles away
      Class IV-V(V+) - 4.2 miles long (3100 Road to North Fork Toutle)
 Ski Areas Near Cowlitz River:
Crystal Mountain, Washington , 50 miles away, 3100 foot drop, 11 lifts, 50 runs
White Pass, Washington , 51 miles away, 1500 foot drop, 6 lifts, 32 runs
Timberline Lodge, Oregon , 61 miles away, 3590 foot drop, 6 lifts, 32 runs
Mt. Hood Ski Bowl, Oregon , 61 miles away, 1500 foot drop, 9 lifts, 65 runs
Cooper Spur, Oregon , 62 miles away, 500 foot drop, 2 lifts, 10 runs
Mt. Hood Meadows, Oregon , 63 miles away, 2777 foot drop, 12 lifts, 87 runs
Summit at Snoqualmie, Washington , 66 miles away, 2280 foot drop, 26 lifts, 96 runs
Alpental, Washington , 67 miles away, 2280 foot drop, 5 lifts, 19 runs
Stevens Pass, Washington , 82 miles away, 1800 foot drop, 10 lifts, 37 runs
Hoodoo, Oregon , 100 miles away, 1035 foot drop, 6 lifts, 30 runs
 Hotels Near Cowlitz River:
Gateway Inn, Ashford , 19 miles away
Skamania Lodge, Stevenson , 24 miles away
Great Wolf Lodge Grand Mound, Grand Mound , 31 miles away
Econo Lodge Buckley, Buckley , 33 miles away
BEST WESTERN PREMIER Plaza Hotel & Conference Center, Puyallup , 35 miles away
 Campgrounds Near Cowlitz River:
Taidnapam Park, Glenoma, 3 miles away
Quartz Creek Big Trees Campground, Lewis County, 5 miles away
Green River Horse Camp, Glenoma, 6 miles away
 Trails Near Cowlitz River:
Independence Pass Interpretive Trail, Skamania , 9 miles away, 1.5 hiking miles, 382 feet elevation difference
Coldwater Trail, Skamania , 10 miles away,  10.6 hiking miles, 3233 feet elevation difference
Fawn Lake Trail, Cowlitz , 11 miles away, 1.4 hiking miles, 361 feet elevation difference
Smith Creek Trail, Skamania , 12 miles away,  6.2 hiking miles, 2573 feet elevation difference
Bean Creek Trail, Skamania , 12 miles away, 7.4 hiking miles, 3072 feet elevation difference
Pine Creek Trail, Skamania , 13 miles away, 7 hiking miles, 2561 feet elevation difference
Smith Creek Butte Trail, Skamania , 15 miles away, 2.2 hiking miles, 1525 feet elevation difference
 Public Lands Near Cowlitz River:
Mount Rainier National Park, Ashford - WA , 16 miles away
Gifford Pinchot National Forest, Washington , 26 miles away
Ike Kinswa State Park, Washington , 28 miles away
Flaming Geyser State Park, Washington , 39 miles away
 Golf Courses Near Cowlitz River:
Ironwood Green, Glenoma , 3 miles away
Maple Grove RV Resort & Golf Course, Randle , 12 miles away
 Lakes Near Cowlitz River
McBride Lake, Cowlitz , 18 miles away
Lake Christine, Pierce , 20 miles away
Lone Tree Lake, Lewis , 20 miles away

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Some content, including Reach Name, Class, Coordinates, and Length, comes from American Whitewater with permission.