Difficulty II+(IV)
Length 8 Miles
Flow Range 1000 - 2000 CFS
Flow Rate as of: 51 minutes ago 499 [CFS]
Reach Info Last Updated 06/26/2019 11:58 pm

River Description

This a fun run that ends in the town of Winthrop.

The two most significant rapids come near the end and both can be scouted from town. The Fulton Diversion, a former dam that was replaced with an engineered channel forms a signifcant rapid particularly as flows increase but thankfully the hazards associated with the lowhead dam are now gone. The line is down center right. You can check out this rapid by taking the trail from town that heads upstream along the river. The trail crosses the river over a bridge and the rapid can be viewed from river right.

The final rapid is known as theTrapid which can be seen from Highway 20 bridge over the Chewuch; during certain time periods a screw trap used to count juvenile salmon outmigration is installed at this site.

Logistics: On the east side of the town of Winthrop and just downstream of the confluence where the Chewuch joins the Methow, Highway 20 crosses the Methow at mile 193.3. A trail bridge is just upstream of the highway bridge. This is the take-out. To reach the put-in head west through Winthrop and at Highway 20 mile 192.6, and turn north on West Chewuch Road (next to the town ball field and across from the Red Barn). Continue on this road for 6.8 miles and turn right to the bridge that crosses the Chewuch River.

Rapid Descriptions

Fulton Diversion

Class - III+ Mile - -0.9

The Fulton Ditch Company's diversion dam was removed and a roughened channel was constructed in 2006.


Class - II+ Mile - -0.2


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Teresa Fish
8 years ago

The largest two rapids are in the last mile of this run: The Fulton Diversion Dam (you can walk to it on Town trails) and the Trapid (which can be seen from HWY 20 bridge over the Chewuch) mind the screw trap.

Gage Descriptions

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Directions Description

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No Accident Reports



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Take Action to Protect Methow Headwaters

Thomas O'Keefe

The Methow Valley, located in the foothills of the North Cascades, is one of the Northwest's most popular recreation destinations. It is surrounded by public lands that provide year-around opportunities for outdoor recreation including whitewater paddling on rivers like the Methow, Lost, and Chewuch. A current threat to the valley and the recreational opportunities available is a proposed large-scale copper mine in the heart of the valley. The Forest Service has requested input on a proposed action to declare the Methow Headwaters off-limits to any new mining activities while Congressional leaders work on a permanent solution to protect this landscape.
article main photo

TAKE ACTION: Protect Methow Headwaters

Thomas O'Keefe

The Bureau of Land Management is currently accepting public comment on a proposal to protect the Methow Headwaters from an industrial-scale copper mine above the town of Mazama. The proposed mine would negatively impact the incredible opportunities for outdoor recreation in the Methow Valley. A strong show of public support will be required to secure protection for this river valley.

article main photo

Yakama Nation Fisheries Boater Survey (WA)

Thomas O'Keefe

American Whitewater is reaching out to our membership to encourage participation in a study of boating conditions and recreation safety conducted by consultants working with the Yakama Nation Fisheries program. The study reaches include Nason Creek, Twisp River, and Chewuch River. The overall purpose of the study is to identify known and anticipated river users and evaluate riverine hazards as habitat restoration projects are planned and implemented.


Gregory Knab


Thomas O'Keefe


Revision #Revision DateAuthorComment
1191879 07/09/04 Gregory Knab n/a
1202260 05/28/13 Thomas O'Keefe map edits
1207601 05/30/17 Thomas O'Keefe rapids added
1212529 05/31/19 Thomas O'Keefe updated image position
1213099 06/26/19 Thomas O'Keefe updated image position