Yakima River: Teanaway River to Thorp

A scenic float through a basalt canyon east of the Cascades between Cle Elum and Ellensburg. Water released from upstream lakes for irrigation make for good packrafting levels from spring through late summer.



  • East Cle Elum (Teanaway Junction) Boat Launch: This is the standard put-in. At SR-970 Mile 2.5 (just west of the junction of SR-970 and SR-10), turn south onto a dirt road following the signs for river access across the railroad tracks and continuing ~0.24 mile to the river. This is a WDFW (Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife) site and a Discover Pass is required. 
  • Cle Elum River at Bullfrog Road:  To add 10 miles to the run, put in further upstream at the Bullfrog Road bridge across the Cle Elum River about 1.5 miles before it joins the Yakima River.


  • North Thorp Highway at Yakima River Bridge: To reach the take-out from the put-in, head back to SR-970, turn right, and in 0.1 mile turn right onto SR-10. Drive SR-10 for 9 miles to a right turn onto Thorp Highway. Continue 0.9 mile on Thorp Highway to the bridge across the Yakima River. WDFW access is on the downstream river-right side of the bridge. A Discover Pass required.
  • SR-10 (Thorp South) Take-out: To extend the trip about 3.5 miles, take out at a WDFW site on SR-10 at Milepost 101.1. This is about 3,000 feet upstream of a lowhead dam on the Yakima River, at SR-10 Milepost 101.5. The dam must be avoided.


For most of this run the river passes through a scenic basalt canyon. Water released from upstream lakes for downstream irrigation provide good water levels for this trip from spring into September. The whitewater consists of mild Class II wave trains.


  • Wood jams can be encountered, especially in the first river mile.
  • The diversion dam downstream of the lower take-out must be avoided.
  • See American Whitewater's Yakima: Confluence with Teanaway River to Thorp web page for more information.
  • Suitable Activities: Packrafting
  • Seasons: March, April, May, June, July, August, September
  • Weather: View weather forecast
  • Difficulty: Class II River
  • Length: 16.0 mi
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