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River Rafting & Float Trips

Rafting trips are a great way to experience the magic of the Skagit River. Several tour groups run various stretches of the river, with summer and winter trips quite popular.

There’s something for everyone.

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 an approximately 10-mile rafting journey that lasts about four hours.

For a calmer float, go on a fall trip as the colors turn, or book a salmon and bald eagle trip during the winter months. 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 as you travel a 10 mile stretch of the Skagit River. You’ll go right through a bald eagle sanctuary. 

Trips are typically less than $100 per person, and some are themed. You can book a float with wine tasting package, a float focusing on how to gather and eat wild foods and even a float and hike trip.

Tour groups include Alpine Adventures, Pacific NW Float Trips, Orion Blue Sky Outfitters and Wildwater River Guides.

Boat and Powerhouse Tours

In the east end of the county, Seattle City Light, which operates the Skagit Hydroelectric Project on Ross Lake in the North Cascades, hosts boat and powerhouse tours and North Cascades expeditions.

The boat tours on Diablo Lake at the base of Ross Dam are offered on a first-come, first-served basis Thursdays through Mondays, late June through early September.
They last about an hour and 15 minutes and include information about the area and the three hydroelectric dams, which provide power to Seattle.
The approximately six-hour tours of the Gorge, Diablo and Ross powerhouses are offered in September and October and begin in Newhalem, just west of Diablo Lake. They include a walking tour, lunch and boat trip on Diablo Lake.
The expeditions are offered Fridays through Sundays, late June through early September and last about six hours. The tour features the Skagit Project and North Cascades area as seen from Highway 20.

For more information, visit:

Deception Pass Tours

Deception Pass Tours takes visitors and residents through the turbulent waters in the pass between Fidalgo and Whidbey islands and under the historic Deception Pass bridges on a scenic and informational tour.

The hour-long tours are offered March through October every hour from 11 am to 5 pm during the height of the season.
The boat has an open deck, so passengers can see in every direction the scenery and wildlife that on any given day can include eagles, seals, porpoises and whales.
Tickets are available at the ticket booth in the parking lot just south of the Deception Pass bridge, or stop by the Deception Pass Tours office on Highway 20.

For more information, visit: