Middle Fork Snoqualmie (WA)

:projects:midfork.jpgOne of the most significant outdoor recreation areas close to metropolitan Seattle is the Middle Fork of the Snoqualmie River. Less than an hour drive from downtown, the valley is accessible to a population of over three million people and attracts visitors from across the country. Few places in the country can boast such an incredible resource that is so accessible. The river feels remote as it winds through a forested river valley largely in public ownership, and it has been proposed for designation as Wild and Scenic by the U.S. Forest Service. A diversity of recreational opportunities are pursued within the boundaries of the watershed.

The Snoqualmie River itself is popular for whitewater recreation and provides the closest intermediate whitewater to the greater Seattle area. With over 40 miles of whitewater, the river and its tributaries serve a wide range of skill levels with some sections suitable for beginners and others that challenge the nation’s top experts. The best known section is called the “Middle-Middle” that extends from the Dorothy Lake Road bridge downstream to an access point off SE Tanner Road in North Bend.

For local paddlers, the 7.6 mile Middle-Middle run is a popular “escape” that can be paddled on weekday evenings particularly during late spring when the river is fed by snowmelt from the Western Cascades. The river is also popular throughout the rainy season when winter storms provide ample flows for whitewater boating. In addition to many of the region’s paddlers who consider this river their local run, the Middle-Middle attracts paddlers from across the country who come to sample the region’s rich outdoor recreational resources.

Recommended Wild and Scenic Rivers

A future priority for this valley is protection of the rivers through Wild and Scenic designation. A 1990 study by the Forest Service determined that the following rivers were eligible and recommended them to Congress for designation. Designation is important for the development of a management plan that will protect the recreation and resource values that make this river such a treasured resource.

Middle Fork Snoqualmie: Outstandingly Remarkable Values of this river include Recreation, Fisheries, and Wildlife. Segments have been recommended to Congress for designation as follows:

  • Headwaters near La Bohn Gap to the Alpine Lakes Wilderness Boundary: Wild, 6.4 mi.
  • Alpine Lakes Wilderness Boundary to Taylor River confluence: Scenic, 13.2 mi.
  • Taylor River confluence to North Fork Snoqualmie confluence: Recreation, 20.1 mi.


Taylor River: Outstandingly Remarkable Values include Recreation and Fisheries. Segments have been recommended to Congress for designation as follows:

  • Snoqualmie Lake to the Alpine Lakes Wilderness boundary: Wild, 1.2 mi.
  • Alpine Lakes Wilderness boundary to Quartz Creek Road: Scenic, 5.4 mi.
  • Quartz Creek Road to confluence with Middle Fork Snoqualmie: Recreation, 1.6 mi.


Pratt River: Outstandingly Remarkable Values include Recreation, Geological, Fisheries, Wildlife, and Ecological. Segments have been recommended to Congress for designation as follows:

  • Headwaters at Melakwa Lake to the Alpine Lakes Wilderness boundary: Wild, 1.6 mi.
  • Alpine Lakes Wilderness boundary to confluence with Middle Fork Snoqualmie: Recreation, 7.9 mi.


Partners

Primary stewardship partners on our efforts in the Middle Fork Snoqualmie include:


The contacts below include staff and volunteers working on this project. Make sure you are logged in if you wish to join the group.

projects - Middle Fork Snoqualmie (WA)

Title Name City
Jennie Goldberg Seattle WA Details...
Thomas O'Keefe Seattle WA Details...


Documents

Associated Rivers

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