Riffe Lake and Cowlitz Falls

Trip Date: May 8th, 2021

The Cowlitz River in passes through Lewis County Washington, forming the renowned Cowlitz Valley. This area of Washington is absolutely gorgeous and features some of the best campgrounds and recreational facilities in western Washington, including La Wis Wis campground and the Tatoosh Wilderness. The Muddy Fork Cowlitz River is formed by the drainage of the Cowlitz Glacier on Mount Rainier, while the Clear Fork of the Cowlitz River originates from Old Snowy Mountain in the Goat Rock Wilderness area. On this trip I visited two of the major reservoirs formed by large hydroelectric dams on the Cowlitz River, Lake Scanewa and the much larger Riffe Lake.

The Kosmos Wildlife Area the east end of Riffe Lake mostly consists of wide open fields of grass near the town of Glenoma, Washington. A day use park in the Kosmos, located at the Riffe Lake shoreline, is an excellent facility to park at and enjoy the peace and beauty that is Riffe Lake.

The Conlay Road was open today, and we traveled east on this forested gravel road to meet up with Falls Road, going down toward the Cowlitz Falls Dam. After visiting the public fishing area below the dam we continued on to Lake Scanewa, the reservoir formed above the dam. The day use area park on Lake Scanewa is a very enjoyable and scenic place to enjoy some of the sights and sounds of nature that Washington State offers.

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