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Looking for Riverfront Property on the Yakima River?

Unique Properties For Sale Along the Yakima River

We are fortunate to spend many days each season fishing along the banks of the Yakima River.  The view from a drift boat offers a unique perspective of properties and homes alongside the river.

Often times we hear our guests ask, “What do you think of that particular piece of property?”, or exclaim, “I’d love to own that place!”  The reality is that when you start looking to buy recreation property, and the more filters you apply such as riverfront, within 2 hours of home, year round access, etc., the list shrinks and prices go up. 

These frequent conversations have created some consistent points to consider if you’re looking at recreation properties. 

1.    Year round access — a big reason to own a place less than 2 hours from your home is the convenience of being able to escape the city on short notice.  County roads and state highways are plowed in the winter and predictable. 

2.    Private access points — for wading, rafting, or floating.  Is it in a safe, secure area, and could it be used as both a put in and take out?  Are there other recreation opportunities easily accessible from the property (public land, trails, etc...)?

3.    Local amenities — restaurants, gas, shopping, and grocery stores.  No one likes to drive an hour on icy roads because you ran out of coffee for the morning.

4.    Security – being in an area where there is other traffic is not a negative for owning a vacation home.  The presence of neighbors driving by and lights on next door certainly decreases the likelihood of prowlers.

5.    Other activities — what else can you do from the property or in the nearby vicinity, such as, hiking, biking, fishing, hunting, floating, swimming, horseback riding, golf, and more?  Make a list of activities you and your family enjoy and rate each property that you look at.

6.    Required maintenance — In our experience, this is an often underrated consideration.  How much time is required to keep the place looking nice?  Who is the repairman when things break down or spring a leak?  If you reside full time that's probably not an issue.  However, if you only stay on weekends and spend all of your valuable time working on your getaway, that cabin in the woods may not be the best choice.  A high level of convenience and simplicity is essential in selecting the appropriate property.    

7.    Vacation Home Rental option –  this is becoming a popular standard.  Is there a market in the area, and is it worth it for you do this?  A good goal may be to generate enough revenue to hire a house cleaner and care taker.  This ensures the place will be ready for you each time you visit so that you can spend your time having fun instead of performing maintenance and repairs. 

8.  Get geared up to recreate!  This is what you bought the property for, right?  Storing rods rigged and waiting and having your boat or raft river-ready is efficient, and efficiency translates to more time on the water!  We often answer the phone and hear, "I just bought a cabin and want to get set up."  For this area, that means a 3wt for small dries and mountain streams, a 5 wt for big dries and nymphs, a 6 wt for streamers and lakes, and a 8 wt for steelhead (along with reels and lines and a fly box for each).  Oh, yeah! - multiply that by 2,3, or 4, ... - so that your spouse and children can join you!

If you are considering properties along the Yakima River, here are some great options:

1.     Canyon River Ranch Cabin #5:  Description: This 3305 sq foot cabin was built in 2010.  With 4 bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms, it offers a perfect combination of indoor and outdoor living space that takes full advantage of the amazing views of the river and canyon walls beyond.  The floor plan was designed for group gatherings and easily accommodates multiple families sharing the space.  The quality of finish in this cabin was completed to the highest level of year-round comfort and convenience.  The full amenities of Canyon River Ranch including swimming pool and hot tub, game room, lodge great room, vineyard, boat launches are all located within a few minutes walk.  Red’s Fly Shop and Canyon River grill are located next door.  This cabin is located right in the middle of the busiest section in the Yakima River Canyon. The float-in ability to utilize this property is second to none.  One of our favorite things to do in the summer months is to fish late evenings and early mornings.  For this property, that simply means floating in and tying off the anchor for the night and walking in the back deck door.  Next morning, your boat is in the water and ready to fish the early morning bite.  In addition to the excellent fishing opportunities that are just out the back door, Canyon River Ranch is also surrounded by public land and provides wonderful hiking and access opportunities.  It is common to see turkeys, mule deer, and big horn sheep right out the back door. Offered at $1,098,000  Click here to view the listing.

2.    Rock Bottom Ranch, 830 Wade Road, Thorp, WA:   This 16.49 acre property includes a 2,298 square foot house, 40’x 60’ heated barn, 120’x75’ indoor arena, and approximately 2,000 feet of Yakima River frontage with a private boat launch!  Current use includes approximately 12 acres of ground irrigated for hay production, 4 acres of pasture, with the balance being utilized for structures and landscaped grounds. This property is located on a dead end road along the Yakima River just a few minutes away from the Thorp exit on I-90.  Amenities nearby include the Thorp Fruit Stand and a convenience store and gas station.  The gated entrance to the property ensures privacy and security.  The orientation to the river virtually eliminates views in from anywhere outside of the property.  Roads to the property are excellent, ensuring year round access without horrible winter provisions necessary. 

As for river access, this section is one of the least crowded of anywhere on the Yakima River, due to its’ location being just below the Diversion Dam – which poses an impassable obstruction to floaters.  The next public launch site is downriver at the Ellensburg KOA.  This means you will have approximately 5 miles of private water!  As one can imagine, the fishing on this section can be very good.  And for those days when you don’t have time to float but still want to fish, you can simply fish the water directly in front of the house and enjoy one of the most prolific runs on the entire river. 

In addition to the great fishing access, this property is also a horse owners dream.  The pasture, barn, pens, and arena were all designed to curtail the need to buy feed and trailer horses to offsite training facilities.  Another plus, the property offers ride out access to the John Wayne trail.  You can literally saddle up for miles and miles without ever having to trailer horses.  In today’s market, water rights and water use can be a very big deal.  This property has an existing well that has been in continual use since the house was originally built in 1905.  The well is 110’ deep and provides excellent water quality and flow.  The property also comes with approximately 12 acres of water rights delivered by the West Side canal.  Offered at $979,000 Click here to view the listing.

3.    Canyon River Lodge: 1/6 units for sale:  Canyon River Lodge is comprised of 10 nicely appointed 2 bedroom, 1.5 bathroom condominiums.  Each suite offers a full kitchen, living room with gas fireplace, private deck, and spectacular view of the river and basalt cliffs beyond.  Each 1/6 unit offers 56 nights (8 weeks) of annual use.  The beauty of fractional ownership is that you pay for the time that you are likely to use.  You are not paying full time to manage a cabin that you may go to once a month; rather, you are paying 1/6 of the full ownership costs.  It makes riverfront ownership affordable, and ensures you can enjoy your time recreating not working!  The beauty of Canyon River Lodge is that the usage model allows for maximum flexibility.  Your nights are yours to use, share with friends, or try to rent.  You also have the ability to block out 4 rooms on the same night for a family get together and simply deduct all 4 from you’re nightly annual total.  1/6 units offered at $99,000  Click here for more details!

4.    Lots for sale, Canyon River Ranch: Canyon River Ranch is a small community, better thought of as a club.  At completion, Canyon River Ranch will be comprised of the ten suite lodge adjacent to Red's Fly Shop and Canyon River Grill, and a total of just 20 cabin sites.  All nine of the Phase I sites were sold in the initial stage of development.  Eleven Phase II sites were offered in the fall of 2017 and two (#11 and #17) have sold.  Cabin Site #10 is under contract pending closing.  This is the final phase of Canyon River Ranch, making this opportunity rare and attractive

      At completion, Canyon River Ranch will have a total of only 80 owners - sixty in the lodge plus the twenty cabin site owners.  The small number of ownership opportunities is essential to the character and value of Canyon River Ranch, and to the Canyon River Ranch experience.  It could easily be considered more a club.  Cabin sites come complete with water, electricity, and septic service stubbed to the site.  Design guidelines to ensure appropriate and compatible architecture are set forth in the Cabin Design Book prepared by Mithun, one of the most experienced and highly regarded architectural firms in the west. The Cabin Design Book is available upon request.   

     This location is nearly unbeatable when you look at the proximity to the metro area, ease of access and convenience.  Currently available cabin sites include one with Yakima River frontage, 4 on the elevated second tier just off the river and three on the hillside overlooking the ranch’s Syrah vineyard.  Offered at $190,000 to $330,000.  Click here for more details! 


No matter where you are in your search for recreation property, we want this information to be a valuable starting point.  We are committed to help in any way we can.  Freestone Realty, LLC.  Steve Joyce, Broker 509-929-1803.  Email steve@redsflyshop.com with questions or inquiries.

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