Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking

Columbia River

Okanogan Mountains, Washington

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Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking

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  • Paddling under the Brewster Bridge.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • Looking south at Brewster Mountian.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • Kayaking through the haze from the Carlton Complex fire.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • Kayaking in Lake Pateros.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • The competitors in the 9th annual Brewster King Salmon Derby. The largest salmon caught weighed in at 24.97 pounds!- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • Branches stick out of the shallow water off the southwestern end of the Cassimer Bar.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • Exploring a shallow inlet in Cassimer Bar. The water was about a foot deep, but the muck below was suspected to be much deeper.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • Birds fly over the Columbia River.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • While the geese are easily startled, the pelicans hold fast.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • A break in the smoke and haze reveals a longer view.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • Underwater plant life.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • The kayaks ripple through the calm waters between Cassimer Bar and Washburn Island.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • Looking south at Chief Joseph State Park.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • Landing on Washburn Island.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • The rocky beach on Washburn Island.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • Unidentified species (help us identify it by providing feedback).- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • St John's wort.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • Beginning the journey downstream.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
  • Approaching the Brewser Bridge from the northeast.- Lake Pateros Sea Kayaking
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Lots to explore. Unique scenery. Fishing.
Cons: 
Remote. River current. Heavy boat traffic.
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Region:
Okanogan Mountains, WA
Congestion: 
Moderate
Site characteristics: Water: 
Lake
Motorized watercraft allowed: 
Yes
Parking Pass: 
Not Required
Portage required: 
No
Preferable Season(s):
Spring, Summer, Fall
Water difficulty: 
Easy / Class A
Current Local Weather:
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Paddle Description

Paddle Description

Contributor

Lake Pateros is a reservoir that sits between Douglas and Okanogan Counties on the mighty Columbia River. It was formed in 1967 with the construction of the hydroelectric Wells Dam. Along the western shore, the town of Pateros sits to the south and the town of Brewster sits to the north. Every year Brewster hosts a king salmon derby on the lake that draws anglers from all over the state.

During the Carlton complex fires of 2014, Brewster housed many of the refugees from the evacuated areas in the surrounding region while firefighters fought to contain and control the fires that burned over 250,000 acres of land. The above photos were taken near the height of the fires, when the haze had settled down into the gorge.

Kayaking northbound on Lake Pateros can feel like a bit of slog as you fight against the current, but exploring the small islands around Chief Joseph State Park, seeing the birds around Fort Okanogan Park, and the swift ride back make the tour well worth the effort.

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