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An unincorporated logging community, it was named after the Toutle River. The Toutle River rises in two branches in western Skamania County and flows west through northern Cowlitz County to the Cowlitz River north of Castle Rock. The name is from a local Native American tribal designation, Hullooetell. Wilkes simplified that name to Toutle on his 1841 charts and his title has remained. The Toutle River received wide spread publicity in 1980 as it carried huge amounts of volcanic debris from Mount Saint Helens to the Cowlitz and Columbia Rivers.