Light powder. Tons of sun. Amazing views. Terrain that fits everyone in the family. That’s us. Only 12 miles from Wenatchee, the ski area is built into a 2,000 acre basin on the eastern side of the Cascade Mountains. We are a little higher, a little drier, and quite a bit “sunshinier” (300 days annually, in fact) than the other mountains in our area. That means when storms come in, they drop a different kind of snow at Mission Ridge: light, dry powder.
Whitewater Rafting & River Tubing
Thousands visit the upper valley each year to float down the Wenatchee River. Cashmere’s Riverside Park is a favorite take-out spot for commercial and private rafters, as well as kayakers. The rafting season lasts from late March or early April to July or August, depending on how long the river stays high. Most companies offer both day and half-day trips, and some offer meals along with the trip.The Wenatchee River is classified as a class III/IV river in the spring and early summer. Class III/IV is suitable for beginners to intermediates.
The City of Cashmere has developed Riverside Park with rafters’ comfort in mind and a paved ramp was built to assist with the take-out process. Restroom facilities are also available at the park. When the river level drops in July and August, tubing and paddleboarding become popular activities on the river. Some rafting outfitters also offer tubes and paddleboards for rent as well as shuttle services.
|Leavenworth Outdoor Center
|Whitewater Rafting, Tubing & Paddleboards|
|Wildwater River Guides
|Whitewater Rafting, Tubing & Paddleboards|
Surrounded by orchards and nestled into the hills and canyons of the upper valley is Mount Cashmere Golf Course, a nine-hole, par-35 golf course. The course can be found one block west of the Chelan County Expo Center, on Kimber Road. Yardage is short—between, 4,300 and 4,600 feet for those going around the course twice to pick up 18 holes of play—but the hilly terrain and the long No. 6 hole (a 529-yard par 5) promises challenges. Carts are available for rent. Many greens are elevated, with steep grades, and tend to play faster than a newcomer to the course might anticipate. For more information, or to become a member, call 509-782-1207.
The upper Wenatchee Valley offers some of the best conditions in the nation for paragliding, a sport that combines parachuting and hang gliding. Cashmere’s Hay Canyon is a favorite spot for the recreational wind sport and home to the award-winning Aerial Paragliding School & Flight Park.
Rock climbers will enjoy their time here in Cashmere. Premier rock climbing exists in most directions and only a few minutes drive from town. The Peshastin Pinnacles are easily accessible via a network of trails among diverse climbing routes on the various rocks. Near the bottom of the cluster is Orchard Rock, probably the most popular rock on which one can practice technique on various bouldering problems. Most all the routes on this series of rocks are already bolted and perfect for the sport climber. The park operates seasonally depending on the weather, but generally from March until November. Hours are 6:30 a.m. until dusk.
Cashmere offers beautiful scenery for a leisurely walk or a bicycle workout. Many locals use the paved trail at Riverside Park, located along the Wenatchee River off Riverside Drive, for walking and biking. Also recommended is checking out Cashmere’s trees, which are distinctive enough to have earned the city the designation “Tree City USA” by the National Arbor Day Association. Pamphlets detailing a walking tour of Cashmere trees are available at the Chamber office. Many people enjoy walking or biking up Cashmere’s canyons. Mission Creek, Nahahum, Hay, Ollala and Yaksum Canyon are located on the outskirts of town. In some canyons, you’ll catch glimpses of the towering Cascade Mountains beyond. Or try nearby Peshastin Pinnacles State Park, only 2 miles east of Cashmere. If road biking is what you are looking for check out Eurosports for great maps of the area. Routes range from a comfortable 10-mile loop to an advanced 78-mile out-and-back. For mountain biking, Cashmere is home to Devil’s Gulch roadless area, accessed from Mission Creek Road. The trails have been featured in many outdoor and mountain biking magazines and are often called some of the best mountain biking trails in the Pacific Northwest. For a list of Wenatchee Valley trails, we suggest Wenatchee Outdoors and the Chelan-Douglas Land Trust.
There are many sites within the city limits and the surrounding area for birding. Early spring sightings may include violet-green swallows, evening grosbeak, cedar waxwing, kingfisher, calliope and rufous hummingbirds. In the winter, watch for bald eagles along the Wenatchee River between Cashmere and Wenatchee. Keep up with the best seasonal bird-viewing locations from the Seattle Audubon Society. For more local information, go to the North Central Washington Audubon Society website.
Coho fishing returned to the Wenatchee River in 2011 after thousands of the late-run salmon pushed past Rock Island Dam. It was the first time in some 50 years coho were fished in the Wenatchee River. Steelhead fishing also has been allowed recently. But check with the state Department of Fish and Wildlife before you wet a line because the river is managed to protect endangered fish, and a salmon fishing season isn’t guaranteed.
Geocaching takes the old-fashioned scavenger hunt into the digital age, and fans of the past time, recognizing the number of scenic and historic sites in the Cashmere area, have squirreled away several caches. Some can be found near local businesses, some are guarded by a very special “mascot.” If you have a GPS unit, get started by reading up on locations here. Be prepared to leave small tokens behind in the cache, and, if the location is on private property, be respectful of the property owner’s privacy.