Anybody have info on the Trail River near Grandview?

A friend and I drew some goat tags for an area that encompasses the Trail glacier and some of the Trail River. We thought it would be a neat trip to take the train into Grandview, do some pre-season goat spotting and float out the Trail river to Trail Lake and Moose Pass. Does anyone have any information on how packraftable this river is? (The river follows the railroad tracks for most of the way and then joins up with the Johnson pass trail). Thanks!

Ryan Hickel

It’s glacial (cold), braided (lots of options and the effective flow will be lower in smaller channels) and less than 50 ft/mile at the end and less than 100 feet/mile for the first 4.5 miles. Probably some sweepers (cottonwoods). It’s been done with Sevylor Trail Boats before, so Alpackas will eat it up.

Have fun on your scout and write a report.

I know it’s been packrafted as a means of getting off the Trail Glacier. How much of it needed to be portaged I’m not sure. I could likely find out if no one else chimes in.

Thanks for the info guys.

From info I received from the Railroad it looks like they don’t drop off at Grandview…only Spencer glacier. Does anyone know what the hike is like from Spencer to Grandview, along the tracks or taking the highroad? I know there is a tunnel that snowmachiners supposedly cruise over via an avalanche chute. I hear there are plenty of goats around Spencer, but it could be really fun to float out the Trail anyways after glassing around Spencer, if it’s not too gnarly of a bushwack.


Last fall, we tried a Johnson Pass > Grandview > Trail River route, but turned around at the pass because I got sketched out going up the ice and rock without any tools. Toby went back two weeks later with ice axes and crampons, and had an easier go of it. Sounds like the river was marginally floatable, but not very interesting. It might be better during the summer months with more water.

Here’s Toby’s report: