Skykomish River: Railroad Bridge to Big Eddy

Packraft on a fun and challenging river section that is suitable for paddlers with some experience on Class II whitewater.


  • 1,300 to 4,000 cfs.  At 3,000 cfs the river is fun with out being too pushy.  Below 2,000 cfs there will be more rocks to bump over.


  • Railroad Bridge: Drive east on US-2, and after passing Zeek's Burgers turn right and drive downhill. Look for a small pullout on the left at the start of the downhill. Follow the trail toward the railroad bridge, then down and under the bridge. Launch just downstream from the bridge.
  • Split Rock: To include a short section of Class III, put in at split rock, one bend upstream. This put-in is privately owned by Outdoor Adventure Center—please sign their waiver.


  • Big Eddy: This is the common takeout. Big Eddy is a public boat launch with extensive parking and outhouses.  
  • Sportsman Park in Sultan: Continue on down to Sultan to make a longer day out of it.

On the River

The rapids on this river section are at the upper end of Class II difficulty, with some characteristics of Class III rapids. The rapids are longer and require maneuvering around rocks but the stretches between rapids are long and peaceful. It is a good run for those with some Class II experience and ready for a moderate step up in difficulty.

The fun starts immediately from launch. A fast moving section offers the opportunity to practice ferrying across the river.  Just down stream is a ledge with several chutes to choose. The second rapid is the most active. Start a bit left and follow the main current. Below are several more rapids, some extensive bolder gardens, all followed by calm recover sections. Big Eddy is at the bottom of the last rapid. Paddle under the bridge and follow the eddy to the boat ramp.


  • Difficulty: Class II+ River
  • Land Manager: Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest
  • Parking Permit Required: see "Put-Ins" & "Take-Outs" sections (above)
  • Recommended Party Size: 12
  • Maximum Party Size: 12
  • Maximum Route/Place Capacity: 12

Upcoming Activities

There are no activities scheduled at this location.

Trip Reports

This is a list of titles that represent the variations of trips you can take at this route/place. This includes side trips, extensions and peak combinations. Not seeing a title that fits your trip? Log in and send us updates, images, or resources.

  • Skykomish River: Railroad Bridge to Sultan
  • Skykomish River: Split Rock to Big Eddy
  • Skykomish River: Split Rock to Sultan

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