For optimal comfort, we recommend that you take 1 less person in a raft than what it is rated for. Having 1 less person gives you space for coolers, dry bags, knobby knees, and elbows. You can put 8 people in an 8-man raft if you want, but we prefer having a bit more space.
Any float on the Yakima is suitable for a first-timer; however, if you have never gone rafting before, we recommend that you try out the Lower Yakima. The Lower Yakima Canyon is a class I, the water is slow.
If you want a bit more adventure and are feeling confident in your paddling skills, head on up to the Upper for more rapids and faster flowing water. The Upper Yakima is still suitable for novices. However, we recommend it to people who have spent some time on a river (either swimming, canoeing, kayaking, tubing or rafting) and understand how moving water is different from still water.
Trip length depends on the time of year, how many stops you make and which trip you choose to do.
The Lower and the Upper Yakima River both take approximately 3 hours straight through.
Yes! Every reservation includes Personal Flotation Devices (PFDs), paddles and a shuttle for the drivers.
Show up at the shuttle location 15-20 minutes before your reservation.
Yes, reservations include a shuttle for the drivers. Our shuttles leaves in the morning before your trip. This means that your car will be at the end waiting for you.
Our shuttles have limited capacity. Large groups must drop their passengers off before getting shuttled. On the the Yakima River, you will drop your passengers off at the north end of the river (AKA the top) then drive to the bottom to park your car and get shuttled back. Shuttles take about 30-40 minutes round trip.
Yes, but only if it matches your swimsuit, just kidding. If you’re more comfortable with your PFD please bring it, we will simply make sure the PFD fits properly before you get on the river.
For Hot Weather: We suggest: a sun hat, a thin long sleeve to protect yourself from the sun, a swimsuit, sandals that strap to your feet and of course lots of sunscreen.
For Cold Weather: We suggest: a sun hat, a windbreaker, a fleece sweater, long pants that are not cotton, tennis shoes you don’t mind getting wet and synthetic or wool socks.
The Yakima River stays in the 50’s and low 60’s most of the year, check the latest data HERE
We recommend that every person be able to swim unassisted and without a life jacket before participating in water sports. Ultimately we leave the final decision up to the discretion of the individuals. The rule of thumb is if you don’t feel comfortable, don’t go.
Picnic lunches include a sandwich, a bag of chips, a bottle of water, a homemade cookie, and a bag of carrots.
If you get a Deluxe lunch, you also get in season fruits and vegetables.
If you tell us about your allergies we can work around them. Sandwiches are made to order the morning of your reservation. We offer lettuce wraps or salads for people who cannot eat gluten.
Yes, of course you can bring your own food. Bring it in your own cooler or rent one from us!
Yes. We do not have a permanent storefront at the river. If you show up without a reservation, there is no guarantee that we will be at the river or that equipment will be left. Make reservations through the website here: RESERVE TODAY You can make last minute reservations at (509) 964-2530 and we’ll get you on the river ASAP.
For any water adventure, we recommend that every participant be able to swim on their own, without the assistance of a life jacket no matter the age. However we do have age minimus that change depending on the trip.
Rafting the Yakima River, every participant must be at least 3 years old.
Tubing on the Yakima , every participant must be at least 13 years old.
Cle Elum River guide trips, every participant must be at least 7 years old.
Rills does not have a maximum age limit for rafting on the Yakima River. However, we recommend that all individuals be able to swim on their own without the assistance of a lifejacket before they go rafting. However we leave the final decision up to the discretion of the individuals. The rule of thumb is if you don’t feel comfortable, don’t go.
IT IS ILLEGAL TO CONSUME ALCOHOL ON THE RIVER, according to RCW 66.44.100.
Our top priority is your safety on the water. We take alcohol from groups when we deem the amount of alcohol to be a hazard to Rill’s employees and rafting participants. If you decide to drink on the river, please be responsible, safe and considerate of the other people using the river. Just like driving, there should always be sober people to handle the raft; every boat needs two designated people to steer and paddle. Drink responsibly and remember glass and styrofoam are strictly prohibited.
Our main season is May-September but we raft all year as long as weather permits. If you want to go rafting in February, we are happy to assist. Just give us a call so we can set it up.
Yes. We have large groups go every year, family reunions, work parties, US Marine recruiters, class reunions etc. The largest group we have accommodated yet is 120 people.
Guides never expect tips, but they are always appreciated. If you think that your guides did an exceptional job, go ahead and give them a little extra to say thank you.
Employees are much like guides, they don’t expect tips, but they are always welcomed. Some Saturdays employees start getting equipment ready at 6:30 am and don’t get done until 7:30 pm. A tip is sometimes a nice pick up for those long days but is never a requirement.
In the Yakima Canyon, there are lots of BLM and privately owned camping sites. This website explains the BLM fees and gives directions to the sites recreation.gov. If you are rafting on the Lower Yakima, we recommend Yakima River RV, a privately owned campground just outside of the Canyon.
On the Upper, Icewater Creek is a great campsite, so is Taneum Campground .
On the Upper Yakima this campground is where you get near the end of the rafting trip. There are also tons of houses available for rent in the Cle Elum area if you have a big group or plan on staying for a few days.
Yes you can! If you would like, we have Pet PFDs for rent. You will be responsible for any damages caused to equipment by your pet.
The Yakima River is a catch and release river, and you must fish with barbless hooks. For all of the most up to date information go to www.wdfw.wa.gov
A shuttle for the drivers is included with every full-service reservation. However, our busses only hold 14 people, so we only guarantee space for drivers; if there is room, we will take your whole group. If you have multiple cars, you can do your own shuttle at the beginning of the trip.
Rill Adventures does not rent tubes on the Upper because we do not think it as safe for tubers. The water moves faster on this section of the river and it is too hard for tubers to maneuver.
The Cubic Feet per Second (CFS) of the Yakima River varies throughout the year. You can find the current CFS at waterdata.usgs.gov.
Credit cards are held for security deposit and cancellation fees.
Full-service and DIY Rentals: Cancellations made 10 days in advance receive 100% refund
Cancellations made 5 days in advance receive 50% refund
Cancellations made within 5 days receive no refund
Guided Trips: Cancellations made 30 days before the trip will receive a 100% refund.
Cancellations made 10 days before the trip will receive a 50% refund.
Cancellations made within 10 days of the reservation will not receive a refund. Credit cards are held for security deposit and cancellation fees.
Rafting will take place regardless of rainy or windy weather, Only in the instance of real weather hazards, such as lightning storms or flooding, will reservations be cancelled. Weather hazard determination is at Rill’s discretion. In the event of a cancellation by Rill’s, there will be no fees charged
The difficulty of a river is classified on a scale of Class I to Class VI with I being very easy and VI unrunnable.
Class I: Waves small, passages clear; no serious obstacles. (A.k.a. the inner tube float. Barely moving water with hardly any rapids!)
Class II: Rapids of moderate difficulty with passages clear. (Great rafting for families with very small children or for people looking for an introduction to kayaking.)
Class III: Waves numerous, high, irregular; rocks; eddies; rapids with passages clear though narrow, requiring expertise in maneuvering. (This is the most popular classification for whitewater, and is the recommended level for beginning rafters)
This is a great in depth article about river classification