American River (Washington)

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American River
American River 16075.JPG
The American River along Cougar Lake Trail in the William O. Douglas Wilderness
Country United States
State Washington
Region Yakima County
Source Cascade Range
 - elevation 5,241 ft (1,597 m) [1]
 - coordinates 46°49′10″N 121°27′36″W / 46.81944°N 121.46000°W / 46.81944; -121.46000 [2]
Mouth Bumping River
 - elevation 2,765 ft (843 m) [1]
 - coordinates 46°58′31″N 121°9′24″W / 46.97528°N 121.15667°W / 46.97528; -121.15667Coordinates: 46°58′31″N 121°9′24″W / 46.97528°N 121.15667°W / 46.97528; -121.15667 [2]
Length 20 mi (32 km) [2]
Discharge for USGS gage 12488500 at river mile 0.5
 - average 233 cu ft/s (7 m3/s) [3]
 - max 6,280 cu ft/s (178 m3/s)
 - min 15 cu ft/s (0 m3/s)
The American River seen from State Route 410

The American River is a tributary of the Bumping River, in Washington in the United States. It flows down the east side of the Cascade Range, through Wenatchee National Forest and the William O. Douglas Wilderness.

From its source at American Lake, it flows north for several miles, picking up its tributary the Rainier Fork American River, which flows east down from the vicinity of Chinook Pass. State Route 410 crossing Chinook Pass from Mount Rainier National Park, then follows the Rainier Fork and the American River valleys.

After its confluence with Rainier Fork, the American River flows through Pleasant Valley. It joins the Bumping River within the American Forks Campground.

The American River is part of the Columbia River basin, via the Bumping, Naches, and Yakima rivers.

An early name for the American River was Miners Creek. According to historian Gretta Gossett, the river was renamed for the American River in California, "by hopeful miners".[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Google Earth elevation for GNIS coordinates.
  2. ^ a b c U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: American River, USGS, GNIS.
  3. ^ "Water-Data Report 2008, 12488500 American River near Nile, WA" (PDF). USGS. Retrieved 5 August 2009. 
  4. ^ "American River". Washington Place Names database. Tacoma Public Library. Archived from the original on 9 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-05. 

External links[edit]