More California Rafting Trips

California has more whitewater than almost any other state and you can choose your level of adventure. Consider the following recommendations:

Beginner, Class II – III:Rafting in California

The South Fork American River near Sacramento is one of the most popular whitewater rivers in the country. Plenty of Class II & III rapids make this the perfect river for rafters of all ages and abilities.

April – September

The Lower Klamath River in Northern California offers a great Class II beginner float for young kids and first-timers.

June – August

Intermediate – Advanced, Class III-IV:

Located at the border of Sierra and Sequoia National Forests, the Kings River is famous for its long, exhilarating roller-coaster-like Class III rapids.

May – July

Spring fever arrives early on the Merced with Yosemite snows melting fast and furious. In May and June you’ll challenge raucous, mile-long Class III and IV rollercoaster wave trains. For the rest of the season, this first-class pool-and-drop river is friendly to rafters of all abilities.

April – July

The closest whitewater river to Los Angeles, the Kern ranges from mild wave trains to wild roller coasters, for beginners to experts.

May – August

Advanced, Class IV – V:

Home to California’s champagne whitewater, the Tuolumne River originates in Yosemite and thunders down from the High Sierra. You can experience “The T” as a thrill-stacked day trip, an adventurous 48-hour getaway or a carefree three-day vacation. A true wilderness trip, the river is big in spring, moderate in mid- to late summer.

April – August

Dropping an average of 110 feet per mile, Cherry Creek (Upper Tuolumne) is the most challenging run in the U.S.

April – August

The Class IV North Fork American is a wild ride through stunning scenery. This ferocious river consists of almost continuous rapids, boulder fields and holes. With this much excitement, you’ll barely have time to notice the abundant spring-time wildflowers and lush greenery.

April – June

A veritable insta-epic, the North Fork Stanislaus hurtles five miles at a 70-feet/mile gradient past the Giant Sequoia groves of Calaveras Big Trees State Park. Granite gorges plus meadows of wild azaleas and old Miwuk Indian sites slip by amidst big waves, churning holes and plenty of technical, demanding paddling.

April – June

Near the entrance to Sequoia National Park in South-Central California, the Class IV+ Kaweah River pants and plunges through a multitude of great rapids.

May – July

Cutting between the Salmon and Trinity Alps, the Cal Salmon in Northern California is one of the most remote and incredible Class V rivers in the state.

April – June

Cutting a steep wilderness canyon on the Oregon border, the Upper Klamath River is one of the finest and most exciting Class IV rafting trips in the West

June – September