Dam Good Chicken Dinner and Ladder Creek Falls by Night

Dam Good Chicken Dinner and Ladder Creek Falls by Night
Instructors Institute staff
General Tuition (age 13+) $19.00
Senior Tuition (age 62+) $19.00
Youth Tuition (age 3-12) $14.00
Infant Tuition (age 0-2) free

Thursdays & Fridays
June 29 - September 1, 2017
Dinner at 7 pm, Presentation 8 pm, Ladder Creek Falls Tour 9 pm

2017 Registration Coming Soon!

The quiet town of Newhalem has a lively past and once hosted hundreds of visitors who dined and danced under the stars. Guests had dinner at Gorge Inn and then strolled through Ladder Creek Gardens, where they marveled at the “wonders of electricity” that illuminated the falls and provided a musical background.  

Seattle City Light, the National Park Service and the North Cascades Institute have teamed up to provide that historical experience for visitors once again.

Your tour will start at the renovated Gorge Inn in “downtown” Newhalem, where you'll be treated to the famous “Dam Good Chicken Dinner,” a Skagit tradition now updated and available only for these tours (Vegetarians have the options of choosing a veggie lasagna). Dinner also includes a delicious salad, tasty side dishes, mouth-watering dessert and a beverage.

After dinner, enjoy a slideshow presentation and talk on the cultural history of Newhalem, Seattle City Light and the Skagit River Hydroelectric Project. At 8:45 pm, we'll stroll along the Skagit River to Ladder Creek Gardens with a National Park Service ranger. Be sure to grab your flashlight and join the ranger on the short trail to Ladder Creek Falls.

As the evening descends, you will view three sets of rushing falls, each illuminated by multi-colored lights that change by the minute. Take a step back in time, as the historic light show inspires and entertains.

(The Ladder Creek Falls by Night part of the tour involves walking approx. 1 mile over rough, uneven & unpaved ground, and climbing/descending several staircases. Sorry, Ladder Creek Falls is not wheelchair accessible.)

Ladder Creek Falls by Night walking tours are free, but dinner must be reserved and pre-paid. For more information, call (360) 854-2589 or email skagittours.reservations@ncascades.org.

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Family Getaways in the News


The boat ride is pretty awesome,” wrote Terry Richardson, Travel Writer for The Oregonian. “It's as close as you'll get to seeing an Alaskan landscape in the lower 48 states.”


Towering peaks, unbelievable turquoise waters and a fascinating cultural and natural history are more than enough incentive to visit," wrote Jessi Loerch for the Everett Herald. "Skagit Tours will give you a good introduction to the region."


"We visited three powerhouses, and got to go inside one and back in time in two. We ate an amazing, locally sourced lunch at the North Cascades Institute and got a short-but-sweet tour of the nonprofit’s Learning Center on the shores of Diablo Lake... We climbed aboard a boat to get on the waters of Diablo Lake and take a closer look at Ross Dam," explains Amy Kepferle of the Cascadia Weekly. "I know there’s much more to what lies off Highway 20 than what you can see from your car."

Field Guide to North Cascades Institute