SUP: Wanapum State Park | Columbia River

SUP on the Columbia River

We beat the Memorial Day Weekend crowds to nature by going out for an overnight Wednesday/Thursday of last week. This was a straight up car camping adventure. I booked our spot at the Washington State Park Reservation site. We were lucky to get a spot that had direct beach access which was one of my hopes for this SUP oriented escape… 

Where: On the Traditional Land of the Yakama & Wanapum [source: Native Land App]

Wanapum State Park | 4511 Huntzinger Road, Vantage, Washington | Columbia River

When: Wednesday, May 26th. Afternoon. 

Our “Private” Beach

Weather: Sunny & warm. Did cloud over later in the afternoon. Was CRAZY windy the morning after [We didn’t SUP, but were told by many other campers how windy it had been all week there.]

Beach: A short downhill walk from our campsite [my lucky number 11]. Sandy with a few shells. Rocks as we get into the water. Was essentially a private lil’ beach. Only one person walked by with her dog. May be more populated as summer goes on. 

If you aren’t camping – there is also a park right next door that you could launch from. It does require a Discovery Pass.

Amenities: None at the beach. Campsite was great. Check out my upcoming report on the camp here soon. Bathrooms available if peeing in the river isn’t your thing. 

New Tools/Tricks: We had a few new things to try out this time! 

  • Water Shoes. Got us each a pair. Cheap off Amazon. But they did the trick! Will keep you updated how long they last… Did have a mild learning curve to adjusting stance on the SUP due to the their traction.
  • Anchor. Worked great. We used it both to anchor out in the water to fish [and in my case also listen to an audiobook…]. We also anchored right off the beach when we were switching who was on the board or were taking a beach break together. It was so wonderful to not have to bring the board in & out every time we wanted to switch. 
  • Fishing Rod Holder. Well, in usual fashion we didn’t catch any fish. But the holder worked great! Felt like a dream to anchor in the middle of the river, sit back, and fish off the board.
  • Kayak Seat. Sit back you say? Yes. The kayak seat is a delight. Clips in easily. Adjusts easily. There is a kayak paddle add on as well but I opted out of it. For me and the waters I’ve been using the seat in, the single paddle is enough.

What We Learned: SUP Accessories are fun! So is having a “private” beach to launch from. Also, Truly Extra Peach Mango is not good. Would not buy again. But, I did manage to finish the one we did. 

Final Thoughts: This was a great [car] camping + SUP experience. Only 2-ish hours outside of Seattle, and a beautiful drive at that. I love that the SUP is inspiring us to expand our camping radius and find new places to go and explore. Even if it is just for a 24 hour adventure.

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