The Nooksack River emerges from Nooksack Glacier, high up Mt. Shuksan, and drops over Nooksack Falls before entering a wild gorge. After four miles of class II–III white water, the silt-laden waters emerge into the lower river delta, providing fine views of Mt. Baker and the chance to observe bald eagles and other wildlife.
Several rafting companies offer eight-mile white-water trips down the Nooksack from Glacier to Deming June–August, including River Recreation (800/464-5899, www.riverrecreation.com, $78–88), which gives participants the option to ride in a raft with the rest of the group or in an individual inflatable kayak. Whichever you pick, you’ll be treated to a buffet lunch at the end of the trip.
A more leisurely summertime float—extremely popular with inner tubers and families—is the South Fork of the Nooksack River from Acme to Van Zandt.
© Ericka Chickowski from Moon Washington, 8th edition