Californian rivers are well known for their striking canyons, beautiful water, and for the history that lines their banks. California, it is safe to say, wouldn’t have come to be what it is today without its rivers. Beginning with the discovery of gold on the South Fork American River, the commerce and transport done on the American river from Sacramento to the Bay Area, and even to the hydroelectric dams built on these gems through the decades to meet growing demands for electricity. Much like walking the halls of the Smithsonian museum, floating down the rivers of California will show history in small and large scales. Witness the massive shifts in land formations as the rivers have carved the mountainsides, exposing gold- which, in turn, was a catalyst for even more mountainous shifts. These rivers are littered with gold rush era relics: old dredges and mining equipment populate the riverbank like historical markers along Highway 66. It is possible to appreciate the endurance those first miners had when they built their lives, whole towns, along the riverbanks. It is incredible that 160 years later, we can float along the same rivers, seeing the same sights, feeling the same water on your skin, the same sun on your face.
These rivers offer adventure for the novice upto and sometimes exceeding the experience of an expert. From lazy floating trips to Class V high adventure, there is a rafting trip for everyone.
CaliforniaWhitewater.com provides extensive information on exploring California’s rivers. Here you can find information on each river, complete with maps, flows, local gear shops and comprehensive list of outfitters. There is information on the different types of trips and which rivers are best suited for the trip of your choice.
There is a Gear.101 section with explanations about paddles, pdfs, rafts, & general gear. And best of all, they have photos and video for every section of the rivers. Visit CaliforniaWhitewater.com for everything you need to know about rafting in California!