The Snake River is a major tributary of the Columbia, traveling 1,040 miles from its source in Yellowstone National Park through Wyoming, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. It joins up with the Columbia River near the Tri-Cities area in Eastern Washington (near Kennewick, Pasco, and Richland). People have been living along the Snake River for thousands of years. The Lewis and Clark Expedition of 1804-1806 explored the lower portion of the river. Portions of the Snake River flow through some of the most unspoiled wilderness areas in the continental United States (Hells Canyon National Recreation Area). The river also forms a major portion of Idaho’s western border between it and the state of Oregon.
The Snake and Columbia Rivers are much wilder rivers than most others cruised by riverboats today. Cruises along them are well suited to adventurous clientele. Most Columbia and Snake River cruises operate between Lewiston, Idaho and Astoria, Oregon (near Portland). Itineraries on both rivers generally include visits to Washington wineries, exploration of the region’s spectacular scenery and wildlife and usually offer optional jetboat rides to see the dramatic vertical cliffs of Hells Canyon (a highly recommended excursion). Cruising through locks and canyons, these luxurious river cruise ships generally anchor in strategic spots. These areas are easily explored by kayak which allows people to get up close to the beauty and wonder of the area. Other attractions include shopping, microbreweries, visiting the world’s windsurfing capital (Hood River, Oregon), and seeing the unforgettable Columbia Gorge and the Bonneville Lock and Dam. Local historians, Native American storytellers, local musicians, and artists come on board or entertain on shore as well.
The towns and areas along these two classic western rivers are full of unique shops, wonderful people and always provide an engaging atmosphere for visitors. A river cruise along the Columbia and Snake Rivers is great for active families and adventurous baby boomers. Travelers who wish to view areas of the United States that remain relatively unspoiled will enjoy the itineraries.
For more detailed information about the various cruises and options available for exploring the Columbia and Snake Rivers, please contact TMI Travel at 1-800-975-7775 or email us at [email protected]. We would enjoy the opportunity to create a unique Wild West adventure for you.