Professionally Guided River Rafting in Washington
Triad River Tours offers high end quality minimalist style professionally guided whitewater river rafting trips on the Sauk, Skagit, Nooksack, Skykomish, and Green River systems. Introductory level whitewater runs are available on the Upper Skagit River while calm scenic wine tasting and eagle viewing river rafting tours are available on the middle section of the Skagit River. Our river rafting trips feature the finest whitewater rafting and river rescue equipment, a well paid and experienced professional guide staff, meticulously planned safety protocols, and a ceaseless commitment to your safety and quality of experience while with us. Please select from one of the trip offerings below.
The Sauk River is within 1.5 hours of driving from downtown Seattle or Bellingham and has some of the most thrilling continuous whitewater anywhere in the Northwest.
- Great continuous whitewater trip is one of the funnest whitewater runs in the state (or anywhere)
- Reasonably short driving distance from Seattle
- Many nearby fantastic hiking trails, fly fishing locations, photography opportunities, and waterfalls
- Breathtaking views of Cascade Mountain peaks such as Mt. Pugh, Glacier Peak, White Chuck, Whitehorse Mountain, Bedal Peak, and Sloan Peak
The Upper Skagit River is a perfect family and introductory level whitewater section with a rich geological and anthropological history.
- Playful non-intimidating rapids perfect for families
- Magnificent views of the North Cascade Mountains, waterfalls, and a beautiful river corridor
- Great late summer whitewater fun activity
- Located near Seattle and Bellingham along scenic North Cascades Highway
- Many nearby hiking trails, scenic overlooks, and road access photography opportunities
Wine Tasting and Calm Scenic River Tours seem to really go well together. Great for couples, or just a day away from the city.
- Easy going atmosphere on a calm river
- Beautiful views of the mountains at sunset
- Meets near the base of Sauk Mountain, a nice hike before or after the trip
- Available catered lunch in a park or at the winery
- Professional, congenial guide staff available for special events (wedding, anniversary, birthday, engagements, etc.)
Bring family and friends to witness the largest bald eagle migration in the continental United States on the Skagit River.
- Amazing wildlife photography opportunity
- Skilled safe guides prepare a calm, relaxing float
- Winter getaway
- See migrating Salmon spawning, witness a natural life cycle and thriving eco-system at play
- Incredible once in a lifetime opportunity for birders
From Whitewater Rafting to Scenic Float Trips
From mild to wild, from scenic wine tasting float tours to the most extreme and technical whitewater our beautiful state has to offer, Triad River Tours will be guiding you along the way to ensure that you are prepared and equipped with the proper gear and knowledge to have a successful trip. All trip procedures are exacted and practiced endlessly by our guides. All of our equipment is tested and conditioned to be ready for anything, even on our most basic scenic trips. We spare no effort nor expense to ensure that our guests have a great time on our river tours and do so safely. While rafting we know that no good time can be had if worry consumes us, that's why we take great care in preparing our trips long before you arrive, including educational videos and preparatory information that all guests receive prior to their trip. Our rafts are top of the line, from our Maravia Williwaw 1.5s which we utilize in higher water, to the variety of precision rafts specifically built for the river you are running. Our staff is experienced on multitudes of rivers and our guides are the very best in the industry, with a minimum of 5 years of experience each. Come visit Triad River Tours and experience the simplicity of mother nature and the beautiful rivers of the Northwest. If you live near Seattle or Bellingham, are visiting friends and family, or if are our guest from elsewhere in Washington, please take the time to enjoy the beautiful river escapes that surround us here in the northwest.
While some of our rafting trips are definitely thrilling and push the limits of what our guests are capable of, our company isn't here to scare you, we are here to provide you with an experience that will last a lifetime. We want you to have a platform by which you can experience the beauty, the majesty, and the sheer awe that whitewater and scenic sections of river here in the Northwest can offer you.
Triad River Tours offers scenic river tours and whitewater rafting trips in Western Washington with permission from the United States Forest Service, the National Park Service, and all state, federal, and local authorities. All required permits are available to any of our guests at any time. Trusting the safety of yourself, friends, and family is at the very heart of what we believe in. We at Triad River Tours take our responsibility to the public very seriously. It is our pleasure and privilege to guide you here on these magnificent rivers.
Our Sauk River Whitewater rafting trips are an hour and a half drive from downtown Seattle or Bellingham. Our Skagit River Rafting trips are approximately 2 hours from downtown Seattle and just over an hour from Bellingham. Join Triad River Tours for your next escape into the mountains if you live near Seattle or Bellingham; we're practically neighbors!
Start your trip the right way by selecting a company with a reputation and history for safety on whitewater rivers. Triad River Tours is led by some of the most experienced river runners in the industry, and we still dedicate hundreds of man hours every year to the refinement and innovation of our safety protocols, routes, and river sections. Triad River Tours utilizes the finest in rafting equipment and has worked with several manufacturers in the industry to produce rafting designs which push the limits of performance on the river. With an outfitter dedicated to moving the entire industry forward into a future of fun and safe rafting, you can be assured that your next river adventure will be with professionals, and you can drive home peacefully after a wonderful day on the river with us.
Experience + Preparation = Safe Whitewater Rafting
Triad River Tours believes strongly that great river trips start with three things: 1. Highly trained career professional river guides with ample experience on a multitude of rivers. 2. The very best whitewater rafting equipment that is not only state of the art but is specifically selected, tested, and even designed for the exact trip that we are running. 3. Preparation; for our guests and for our guides.
Triad River Tours is a great choice for river rafting trips for you, your family, and your loved ones because we take your safety and security as our first priority in everything we do. You will notice that our equipment is top notch, not overly used, worn, or faded, and you will notice we have some of the most professional, highest quality river guides in the industry, many of whom are capable of running single or multi-day expedition trips. What you may not see at first glance is the preparation that goes into your trip before you even meet us at the river.
Often times, be it in the dead of winter or the peak of whitewater rafting season, Triad River Tours sends guides, scouts, and safety kayakers into the river systems to ensure that routes are clear, many months ahead of running the river with guests. We consider it a part of our responsibility to the public and the river rafting and kayaking communities to conduct research and insight into the behavior and conditions of the rivers which we commercially guide trips. Our trip leaders coordinate with local EMS, Fire Departments, Sheriffs, Forest Service Rangers, National Parks Service Rangers, and non profit organizations dedicated to river safety such as American Whitewater and the American Outdoors Association. We work hand in hand with other outfitters, whenever possible, to coordinate training and safety runs on rivers at all times of the year, so that by the time we are running the river in season we know exactly what to expect. If our research reveals hidden dangers or changes in the structure or condition of river sections, we make adjustments, adapt itineraries to alternate routes (which also have been planned long in advance), and contact local authorities and other boaters to warn them of the dangers. When you are whitewater rafting or kayaking for pleasure we want to make sure you do not have to worry about unforeseen dangers on the river.
We take our responsibilities to you very seriously, and we work hard kayaking and rafting every moment possible before you start planning your trip to ensure safe passage. Preparation is key to safe river running, and knowledge of the river system and its behavior, as well as an understanding of your mechanisms and systems, equipment, and personnel, are critical when making assessment of the safety of the river. The more information we have at hand helps us make good decisions, and it gives us a tremendous amount of leverage when trying to plan a safe and effective strategy for the rivers we raft. Whitewater rafting is a challenge, and invariably we strive to embrace that challenge and invite our guests to experience the natural joy of being both in control and being carried on the currents of our Washington rivers. Our professional guides are constantly preparing, scouting, and training to make sure you have a trip that exceeds your expectations
You will notice that even though we run the river constantly, we do not crowd our website with an extensive array of rivers. Rest assured we have ran, scouted, video recorded, researched, and comprehensively prepared for all of our commercial runs to a point far beyond what is required of us, and are able to run almost any river in Washington. We have ran the Tumwater Canyon of the Wenatchee, the Green, the Skykomish, the Horseshoe Bend section of the Nooksack, as well as the Elwha River on the Olympic Peninsula and the tremendous class 5 Cascade River. We have done them all as a way of familiarizing ourselves with every aspect and condition in Washington that we could potentially face, but when it comes to putting our guests on the river we focus on the trips that we know and operate the best. We then simplify those trips to their core constituents and work to perfect our systems on those rivers, keeping a focus on key variables that can impact the safety and enjoyment of that particular trip. We are exceptionally proud of the time we spend on the river preparing to take you with us. We invite you to always ask questions about the way in which we run these rivers, as it is a tremendous point of pride for us, and something that very much sets us apart from our competition.
Experienced Professional River Rafting Guides
Triad River Tours was born from backcountry expedition rafting experience by its owner, Luke Baugh, who has been rafting since 1994, and started professionally guiding multi-day river rafting tours in 2000. After working for several river rafting outfitters all across the country, Luke settled in as a lead guide on Hells Canyon and the Main Salmon Rivers in Idaho for a company called Idaho Afloat, while also being a licensed guide on the infamous Lochsa River, as well as the New and Gauley Rivers of West Virginia. Luke also spent offseason time guiding fly-fishing trips from a driftboat as well as being an annual attendee of many of the larger outdoor adventure expos in the country. Working as a multi-day expedition leader for trips far away from any help, road, or communication, Luke developed awareness of the importance and necessity for refined and researched safety protocols, preventative rescue and whitewater safety precaution, as well as a strong ethical foundation as a provider of outdoor opportunities in whitewater rafting to the public. Triad River Tours applies modern swiftwater rescue techniques which are applied to specific situations for peak effectiveness. Larger rivers rely on different techniques, equipment, and perhaps even personnel. Guides with expertise on technical rivers and are best suited to guide the Sauk River in lower water. It is our ethical stance, which will not change, that top quality guides make or break a rafting trip, thus, we spend a great deal of time researching, interviewing, and recruiting the highest quality industry professionals, and once we have them we try our best to take good care of them and ensure that their efforts are properly compensated for.
The whitewater rafting industry is very diverse and some people do not take it seriously. Unfortunately an excessively casual approach to the dangers of river rafting can yield terrible results. It is vital, therefore, that we maintain the integrity of the industry by mandating that our outfitters operate to the highest safety and preparatory standards. This starts with customers asking questions and ensuring that they are putting their lives into the hands of professionals.
Triad River Tours operates as a whitewater outfitter under safety protocols that are beyond industry standards. Triad's philosophy on safety is unwaveringly dedicated to preparation, knowledge, customer awareness, and top of the line equipment that is unweathered. If you are running class 3 whitewater or even class 5 whitewater, we always take your safety as our first priority.
Before you book your next whitewater rafting trip or scenic float trip, consider the pure necessity that your trip be run by an experienced and professional river rafting outfitter that takes your safety into consideration before anything else; that is uncompromisingly the stand at Triad. Safety on whitewater rivers can often become a bit of lip service, or posturing for the sake of marketing. For us, it's a part of our conscientious participation in an industry which serves the public through enhancing human life while at the mercy of mother nature. Whitewater river rafting is dangerous, and it's best left to the most competent, experienced, and professional career guides to do the job. We believe that if we make these commitments to mastering our craft and studying and knowing our rivers completely, that our customers will come to recognize a great inherent value in running with professionals with a strong ethical stand in these regards, and will choose to support us in our endeavor to keep the public safe while lessening environmental impact on our North Cascade rivers. Please contact Triad with any questions about a potential trip, and we can lead you through the process. We are dedicated to safe and fun river experiences, with top quality equipment and highly trained professional guides. Each time you go on a river tour with Triad, we guarantee you will be given an opportunity to renew your relationship with nature in an environment held to the highest safety standards, with guides who know the river, and cutting edge equipment that is built specifically for the task.
Industry Leading Whitewater Rafting Equipment
Everything we do starts with organizing our equipment and committing to the task of refining our procedures to make our whitewater rafting trips safer. When Safety is your top priority, you cannot skimp on good gear. In Western Washington reaction time and effectiveness in emergency situations is crucial, and at these times you cannot take the time to consider the possibility of equipment failure; that is why Triad River Tours meticulously tests and selects specific equipment that is perfectly suited for the task at hand. Each Whitewater Rafting trip is led by a trip leader with advanced medical training. Each raft is inspected and is free from any damage that could hinder its performance. We use safety kayakers or safety catarafts whenever the situation requires added safety, and our kayakers are some of the best in the industry. Every raft is equipped with first aid, rescue throw bags, and all the appropriate and required equipment, and then some. We spare no expense in selecting the right tool for the job. To date, we have practiced and ran drills with over a dozen raft designs as well as considered multiple approaches to running safety on the river. With a properly executed protocol as well as hiring and training only those who are passionate about the safety of our guests, we have put together a way of running trips that is second to none when it comes to safety. We look forward to impressing you with our attention to detail, and meticulous selection of only the finest equipment in order to keep you and your family safe on the river. For more specific details on the equipment we use on the river, please visit our page dedicated to the subject by clicking here.
Rafts we use are manufactured with industry leading designs by leading manufacturers such as Sotar, Maravia, Aire, and NRS. Our rafts are self bailing which offers our clients the feature of enjoying the scenery rather than spending the day bailing water out with a 5 gallon bucket. Raft design has come a long way in the past decade and that is one reason why we have only the newest and most modern whitewater river rafts, some of which are proprietary designs which were designed and built specifically for Triad River Tours for the rivers that we run.
Multi-Day Whitewater Rafting Adventures
Triad River Tours is based primarily out of Bellingham, Washington, but our expedition roots precede us and we just cannot help but spread the joyous experiences we've had doing multi-day expeditions. Our affiliated outfitters offer adventures in many other states and a few countries. Our primary clientele is from Seattle, Bellingham, and Vancouver. These cities are close enough to us that you could take a day off of work and get in some great rafting and be home for dinner; that's fantastic and that's why we are here. There is yet another way that people seek our expertise, and it comes to your annual family, couple, or individual vacations. Multi-day recreational travel in the whitewater realm is absolutely the way to go when you are planning your next vacation if you live in Washington.
When you look around at maps of Western Washington; what do you see? Short, fun, playful paddle rivers and beautiful slow meandering scenic trips. The thing about these rivers is that no matter how scenic, magnificent, and family friendly they may be, they are, by definition, coastal rivers that are all carrying water from the Cascade Mountains to the Pacific Ocean. What makes them accessible to people that live in the city is exactly what makes them less remote. Our Washington rivers are serene and majestic, and they are within our reach at any given time. With so many professionals living in Western Washington, and so much stress in our daily lives, our company feels that an escape from the hustle and bustle of our daily lives is exactly what most of us need. But when we are looking to take our paid vacation, or when we have a week or an extended 3 or 4 day weekend, the multi-day expeditions on the roadless wilderness areas of Idaho and Oregon are the places to go.
Mountain River Outfitters has been one of the industries leading multi-day expedition whitewater outfitters in North America for over a decade. Their refined, relaxing style of rafting soothes even the most stressed out executive and lulls them into the serenity of the river corridors of the Snake, Salmon, and Owyhee Rivers. We really encourage you to give some thought to these extended day rafting trips when you plan out your next vacation. Please feel free to contact us at Triad, at (360) 510-1243, if you have any questions about these trips. The founder of Triad spent a decade guiding mult-day expedition whitewater trips with many of the guides at Mountain River Outfitters, and can give you detailed explanations of the workings of these kinds of trips. The meals, the guides, the boats, and the trip itineraries are so refined they border on luxurious. At some point we all deserve to get away from the ordinary, and this is our opportunity to give that to you. The experiences you take with you on multi-day expedition rafting trips will last a lifetime, they are a great way to reestablish connections with family and friends, and remind ourselves of the true beauty and connection out in mother nature. Sometimes you just need to get away... We can help.