About

Welcome to the Float Snoqualmie blog.

The intent of this blog is to provide a clearing house for information about floating the Snoqualmie River – specifically the stretch from the Snoqualmie Falls to Fall City. The blog is created and maintained by Fall City resident Del Moore. I am affiliated with the Fall City Community Association and the Fall City Metropolitan Park District, but I need to make it clear that this blog is not sponsored or even approved by either of these or any other organization in Fall City!

So a little background: “Fall City” is not a city with any sort of municipal government. We have no sewer system, no public works dept or any other public agency normally associated with a “town”.  As a result, all community activities are handled by volunteers including cleanup after floaters who in the past have  typically exited the river at the SR-202 bridge in the middle of town. Without the infrastructure to handle the impact of hundreds of floaters on a sunny summer day we’ve been overwhelmed to say the least.

The issue came to a head in the summer of 2010 when a You Tube video seemed to cause our stretch of river to be “discovered”. As a result of that experience, a “River Float Task Force” was initiated to identify the problems and suggest solutions. Problems identified were generally related to trash, traffic, sanitation and safety. A plan was put in place which mostly addressed the trash for the 2011 floating season. Since the original effort in 2011, the “River Trash Program” has been managed by the Fall City Community Association, but for 2013 the program has been expanded to address traffic and sanitation with grant money from King County and is being transferred to the Fall City Metropolitan Park District.

Much of the “hands on” work of the program has been done by Nancy (wife) and myself. In the hours we’ve spent on the river we’ve found that, in spite of the common wisdom of many of the local residents, most of the floaters we’ve met are courteous and helpful, and willing to help keep our stretch of the river clean.

** Update for 2016 ** At the end of the 2015 floating season we realized the scope of the program to address problems associated with recreational use of the river had grown beyond our capabilities as volunteers. We asked for a funded agency to take over the program but without success. Fortunately, Simon Bryant, owner of Fall City Floating, stepped up and agreed to continue the program through the end of the 2016 floating season September 1st. Here’s a hearty “attaboy” to Simon and the folks at Fall City Floating.

30 responses to “About

  1. Hey Del, just found this blog, nice work! FYI for floaters headed *down*stream from Fall City to the Neal Rd. Ramp the river is mostly clear except for the ridiculous strainer segment just after the new construction. Water is super low obviously and there’s trash galore. We pulled out about 2 cubic feet of old float tubes, teriyaki containers, and Vitamin Water bottles. There’s more work to be done.

    • Thanks for your comments. We don’t encourage floating downstream of the SR-202 bridge because it’s a long slow float with very few exit sites. Floating the distance to Carnation is reported to take as long as six hours. Your help with the trash is appreciated. Some floaters have asked if we’ll sponsor a river cleanup weekend and we’re seriously considering the idea while the river is low.

      • Hey Del,

        Does the water pick up speed past Carnation? Had an idea to float to the ocean (or to a friend’s house in Snohomish) but it’s sounding too ambitious to do in a weekend. Might it be possible with kayaks?

        Thanks!

      • Rumor has it that the river slows downstream of Fall City. We can’t confirm the rumor because no floater has ever returned. (Maybe the world is really flat?)

  2. Del, I have teens that want to try this, but we’ve never done it before. Is there a regulation about life jackets on the river if they are tubing?

    • I know of no regulation currently in effect requiring anyone to wear a life jacket while tubing the Snoqualmie. It would be prudent to wear them anyway, particularly for floaters unfamiliar with the river.

  3. Hi there! Thank you for this great site. How long does it typically take to float from drop in point 1 to take out point 1? Thank you!

    • Plan for as much as 4-1/2 hours from the Plum Boat Launch to the Fall City Community Park without laying over on the beach. The float duration from Put-In #1 (Plum River Access) to Take-out #1 (Zurfleuh) would only be different by a few minutes at most.

  4. Was wondering what the river conditions were like. Is it still deep enough for a float?

    • The river is deep enough to float in most areas. Wider sections move very slowly so the total float time may be as much as 4-1/2 hours.

  5. Del, thanks for your efforts to help people with tubing. Is ther a place to rent tubes also would an air mattress work to tube the river?

    • Tube rentals are available from Fall City Floating. I strongly suggest NOT using air mattresses as they puncture easily, especially with the river as low as it currently is. The same should be said for any of the “drugstore” pool toys many users buy on the way to the river. There’s a reason the King County Marine Rescue team refers to these devices as “Cosco Coffins”.

  6. Very nice & informative site.
    Will you be open on July 4th for rentals & shuttle?

    • Elaine, You apppear to be confusing this blog (floatsnoqualmie.com) with the website for Fall City Floating who does provide shuttle service and tube rentals. You can check with Simon about his schedule for the Fourth. Here’s their website and Facebook page.

  7. Perfect! Thank you for the link.

  8. I think a river clean up while the river is low is a great idea Del. Our adult kids always take a mesh bag and fill it with trash on the way down to town.Then when they walk their tubes/boat home they empty it in our dumpster as to not fill the river garbage cans. The river is an absolutely perfect temp to use a mask and get the junk off the bottom. Shocking what they are finding.. Great blog and super informative for all.

    • Once we catch up from the holiday I hope to have time to pursue the cleanup project. Right now I have trash and recycling backed up I need to dispose of.

  9. what are suggested ages for kids to float?? what is cost to float?

    • There is no charge to float, but parking at the put-in sites requires a Discover Pass. I’m not aware of any regulations limiting the age of participants.

  10. Is this still a viable place to float late July?

    • The river gage is trending down for most of the rest of the month. This puts it at historically low levels offering floating conditions we haven’t seen before. Also, consider the river is warmer than normal making it more comfortable after the cold temperatures we saw at the start of the early season.

  11. Del, are water levels too low to float tomorrow? Worth floating?

  12. Planning a float trip to Snoqualmie or Green River mid August. Leaning towards Snoqualmie, as I have done GR multiple times and never Snoq. Is there a place close to a Take out that has camping? Ideally, I would like to get out and be able to walk back to camp. I looked online and can’t quite find the answer. Thank you

  13. I’m planning to float next Saturday, the 29th. Is that even possible with water levels where they are?

  14. WOW great site – so happy i found it – just moved to the area and was thinking to go floating sunday as it seems very hot – is it already possible (cold wise, depth wise?) thanks

  15. Hello! I’m having a bit of a hard time understanding the river gage reading. Could you please let me know what the river conditions are like? I know that we had almost no snow last year so the river was very low, but this year we’ve had a lot of snow so I wanted to know if the river is good to float at this time. Thanks!

  16. Thanks for creating and maintaining such a great blog! My husband and I love floating this part of the river.

    Do you have any information on the river from Fall City to Carnation? We were think of taking our canoe down that stretch. I’m wondering if there are any major hazards to be aware of.

    • Floating down river of the Fall City bridge (SR-202) is discouraged for a couple of reasons. Agencies consider it somewhat unsafe because of water hazards and restricted access for emergency response. It also takes more time than most floaters want to spend on the river. That said, we know that some floaters have put in at Fall City intending to float the distance. We never saw them again.

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