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USA Parks
Columbia River Plateau Region
Steamboat Rock State Park
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Steamboat Rock State Park © jim bish
Steamboat Rock State Park Summer Color © Megan Ufkes
Steamboat Rock State Park On top of Steamboat © Megan Ufkes
Steamboat Rock State Park Barefoot on the Beach © Lee Koshman
It was a beautiful day and someone had walked barefoot on the beach at Steamboat Rock State Park.
Steamboat Rock State Park © Lee Koshman
A couple of deer seen from the trail up Steamboat Rock.
Steamboat Rock State Park © Lee Koshman
A look up from the beach at Steamboat Rock State Park.
Steamboat Rock State Park Deer on Steam Boat Rock © Lee Koshman
Seeing a half-dozen deer on a hike up Steam Boat Rock was a serendipity.
Steamboat Rock State Park Looking down from Steam Boat Rock © Lee Koshman
This picture was taken from one of the trails up Steam Boat Rock, looking back toward Banks Lake.
Steamboat Rock State Park © Lee Koshman
A view of Steamboat Rock from one of the trails to the top.
Steamboat Rock State Park © Lee Koshman
A picture looking back to Banks Lake as starting up The Rock.
Steamboat Rock State Park © jim bish
Steamboat Rock State Park © Megan Ufkes
Deer bones on top of steamboat rock
Steamboat Rock State Park © Mariel Amundsen
Steamboat Rock State Park Looking Down on North Loop © Megan Ufkes
Steamboat Rock State Park © Mariel Amundsen
Steamboat Rock State Park © Mariel Amundsen
Steamboat Rock State Park © Mariel Amundsen
Steamboat Rock State Park © Thomas A. Whitehead
Steamboat Rock State Park Summer Moon © Megan Ufkes
Steamboat Rock State Park © Mariel Amundsen
Steamboat Rock State Park Fall Colors © Darlene Lundstrum
Changing colors at Steamboat Rock State Park
Availability Search
51052 Washington 155
Electric City, Washington   99123
(lat:47.8659 lon:-119.1276) map location

Phone: 509-633-1304
Reservations: 888-226-7688
Steamboat Rock State Park is a 3,522-acre camping park with 50,000 feet of freshwater shoreline at the north end of Banks Lake. Dominating the landscape is a columnar, basaltic rock with a surface area of 600 acres. Two campground areas and a large day-use area are on sweeping green lawns, protected from winds by tall dramatic poplars. The surrounding areas are carpeted with wildflowers, adding to the gray-green brush of the Scablands. A sandy swimming area and boat launches make the area a favorite for visitors who enjoy water-play and want respite from the hot, summer sun. In the midst of desert, the park offers both lush green lawns and rocks for climbing. Miles of horse trail are open for day use. A hiking trail leads to Northrup Lake, a natural forest area with water access open 24 hours a day.
History of the Area
Steamboat Rock is a long-established area landmark, first used by nomadic Native American tribes and then by early settlers. The military currently uses the area for aircraft flying training missions. The basalt butte rises 800 feet above Banks Lake. It was once an island in the Columbia River bed. When the Columbia returned to its natural course, after centuries of being dammed by ice, the massive rock remained.

There is also a well-engineered road, built in the late 1800s, that winds through and up the south side of Northrop canyon. Once used by stage coaches and freight wagons, it was named after one of the original homesteaders.
A Discover Pass is required for vehicle access to Washington state parks for day use. For more information about the Discover Pass and exemptions, please visit the Discover Pass web page.
The park has 26 tent spaces, 100 utility spaces, one dump station, five restrooms (four ADA) and six showers (four ADA). The park also has 12 primitive boat-in campsites with vault toilets and water.

Utility sites have full hookups. Maximum site length is 50 feet (may have limited availability). Tents must be placed within the designated tent pad.

Vehicle tires must remain entirely on the pavement at all times. Boat trailers may be parked on the lawn, provided the towing vehicle does not back onto the lawn. All lawns are irrigated daily. Mosquito control occurs as required by the Grant County mosquito district evenings when weather permits.

Two vehicles are allowed per campsite; campsite fee includes payment for one vehicle. Extra vehicle fees are due upon arrival.

There are 44 primitive campsites with vault toilets at Jones Bay (no water available), 36 primitive campsites with vault toilets at Osborn Bay (no water available) and 12 boat-in campsites (with water) north of the main campground launch (these sites are not reservable). All primitive sites are first-come first-serve.

Northrup Point water access is available 24 hours a day.

Northrup Canyon has five campsites for equiestrian campers. These sites require a reservation. To reserve call (509) 633-1304 or call the park at (509) 633-1304.

To reserve a campsite at Steamboat Rock State Park call (888) CAMPOUT or (888) 226-7688.

Group Accommodations:The park offers a group camp that accommodates up to 50 people (20 minimum). It is located in the Jones Bay campground of Steamboat Rock State Park seven miles north of the main park on Hwy 155. There is a CXT vault toilet and parking for 20 vehicles of which only ten can be RVs. Shower facilities, drinking water, RV dump station and boat launch are located two miles south of Jones Bay at Northrup Point. Fees vary with size of the group. To reserve, call (888) CAMPOUT or (888) 226-7688.
1. Steamboat Rock State Park offers a 50, 000-foot freshwater shoreline for swimming.
2. The park features designated swim areas with no lifeguard on duty.
3. Swimming is allowed in Banks Lake which surrounds the peninsula of Steamboat Rock.
4. Visitors can enjoy warm water temperatures during summer months ideal for swimming activities.
5. Swim at your own risk as there are sudden drop-offs and currents within the lake area.

The park has seven boat ramps at three locations on Banks Lake and 320 feet of dock for boat handling only. A marine PortaPotty station is available.

Five moorage bouys are located at the north end of Steamboat Rock

A daily watercraft launching permit and a trailer dumping permit is available at the park.Annual permits also may be purchased at State Parks Headquarters in Olympia, at region offices, online, and at parks when staff is available.
Anglers can enjoy freshwater fishing in Banks Lake, teeming with species like walleye, smallmouth bass and rainbow trout. Ice-fishing is popular during winter months. Fishing licenses are required for those over 15 years old.

Steamboat Rock State Park is

There is a reservable day-use area that accommodates 200 people. To reserve, call (888) CAMPOUT or (888) 226-7688.
Biking enthusiasts can explore 9 miles of bike trails. However, be aware these paths are shared with hikers.

The terrain varies from flat to moderately steep hills which may pose a challenge for beginners.

Ensure you have the right gear and sufficient water as some areas lack shade during hot summer months.

Remember that wildlife is common in this area; stay alert and respectful while biking through their habitat.

Nighttime cycling isn't recommended due to limited visibility on unpaved tracks after sunset.

Always adhere to park rules regarding trail usage for an enjoyable yet safe bicycling experience here.
1. Steamboat Rock Trail: This 6-mile round trip trail takes you to the top of a massive basalt butte with panoramic views of Banks Lake and surrounding landscapes.

2. Northrup Canyon Trail: A moderate, 3-mile hike that leads through an old homestead site, pastures filled with wildflowers in springtime, and ends at a beautiful lake view point.

3. Flume Canyon Loop Hike: An easy-to-moderate level hiking path spanning about four miles around the park's perimeter offering stunning canyon vistas along its route.

4. Osborn Bay Loop Trail: Approximately two miles long looped track providing scenic views over Osborne bay area; suitable for all skill levels due to relatively flat terrain.

5. Jones Bay Footpath: Shorter than most trails within this state park (about one mile), it offers hikers picturesque waterfront scenes across Jones Bay on Banks Lake.

6. Green Point Walkway: Easy walking pathway stretching approximately half-a- mile alongside Green Point's shoreline - perfect for bird watching or sunset strolls.

7. North Campground Nature Path: Ideal family-friendly walk covering less than a quarter-of-a -mile distance featuring interpretive signs detailing local flora/fauna found throughout campground vicinity.

8. South Campground Trails System: Network of interconnected short paths winding their way between campsites allowing campers direct access onto main hiking routes from their camping spots.

9. Banks Lake Viewpoint Track: Steep uphill climb leading towards elevated viewpoint overlooking vast expanse of Banks lake ; roughly three:quarters-of-a-mile lengthwise, recommended only for experienced trekkers owing steep gradient involved.

10. Picnic Area Access Paths: Numerous small footpaths connecting various picnic areas scattered across Park grounds ensuring visitors can easily navigate between different recreational zones without needing venture too far off beaten track.
Birdwatchers can spot species like the American White Pelican, Great Blue Heron and Osprey.

The park is home to various waterfowl including Mallards, Canada Geese and Western Grebes.

Raptors such as Bald Eagles, Red-tailed Hawks and Northern Harriers are also common sightings.

Songbirds include Yellow Warblers, Black-capped Chickadees and Bullock's Orioles among others.

During migration season one might see Tundra Swans or Sandhill Cranes passing through.

In addition to birds there's a variety of wildlife that includes mule deer.

Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
June 15 by Kelcie_R
park review stars; one to five
June 13 Love Steamboat Rock by [email protected]
park review stars; one to five This year was really fun but my only complaint is the camp host. They really did nothing about noise or keeping up the campsites. We would really like Tom and Linda back
May 9 Cancer can not even keep me away. No way by Andrea Boag
park review stars; one to five I have spent a great part of my thirty years alive, growing up at Steam Boat State park. The summers were amazing and now I have been fighting for about 12 years a horrbile cancer. Never getting any easier. All I want to do is go to Banks Lake, staying all summer. Just a place I do not have to remember I have this illness. I gained all my love of the water from this place. I have not been lucky enough to have a family of my own. But you can sure bet on it, as soon as a family or my life is more stable. I will be in head position of organizing the big group family week or two Steam Boat Rock @ Banks Lake camp out. I have the best memories from my time. So thank you to the camp host,( I had myself so convinced that my career when I grew up was to spend the summer as camp host of the 90 side.) Rangers that keep us able to use this wonderful place.
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Nearby Hotels

Located on Banks Lake 11 miles south of Electric City, Wash., and 16 miles north of Coulee City, Wash.

From Electric City : Take SR 155 south 11 miles, and turn right at the marked park entrance.

From Coulee City : Take SR 155 north 16 miles, and turn left at the marked park entrance.

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Washington State Parks