Outdoors blog

Little Spokane River moves paddlers along

Canoeists enjoy a relaxing float on the Little Spokane River on July 10, with flows at 300 cubic feet per second. (Rich Landers)
Canoeists enjoy a relaxing float on the Little Spokane River on July 10, with flows at 300 cubic feet per second. (Rich Landers)

PADDLING -- The Little Spokane River's flows are still unseasonably high, but they've dropped to a pleasant level.  I joined a group of canoeists Sunday at flows of 300 cfs and we effortlessly floated from St. George's School to the takeout near the confluence of the Spokane River in 2.5 hours -- that includes a little slough exploring.

Some trees were down on the water, but we found big gaps and easy maneuvered past them.

Remember, Washington's new Discover Pass is required for parking at facilities along the Little Spokane River and other state park facilities.

The Little Spokane River is a natural area with additional rules beyond those at most state parks.

1. All use of the river must be by a device that keeps passengers out of the water. In other words, canoes, kayaks, and rafts are acceptable; inner-tubes, air mattresses, or swimming are not.

2. No alcoholic beverages are allowed on the Little Spokane.

3. Keep your pets elsewhere. They do not belong in the Little Spokane Natural Area.

4. Of course, please take home whatever you bring. Do not litter. Isn't that obvious?

5. Because it is a natural area, please do not disturb the wildlife in any way. Fishing is allowed (guess they aren't considered wildlife...) but not from shore.

6. Wear your personal floatation device at all times.

Don't have your own canoe or kayak? Here are sources for renting them:

  • Mountain Gear, 325-9000.
  • REI, 328-9900.
  • Riverside State Park, (509) 465-5064.



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Rich Landers
Rich Landers writes and photographs stories for a wide range of outdoors coverage, including a Sunday feature section and a Thursday column. He also writes the Outdoors Blog.

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