About Tributary Whitewater Tours


Our mission at Tributary is to deliver safe, high-quality river trips to guests from all walks of life. We strive to deliver a truly unparalleled experience with integrity and attention to detail. Our family of staff has chosen this profession not only as a livelihood; but as a way to inspire people by connecting them to amazing places.

We endeavor to bring happiness and life-changing opportunities to our guests as well as our staff.

We aim to continue our legacy of sustainability for future generations.

We value human kindness and spiritual growth.

We believe rivers are the thread that holds all of these things together.


Our vision is to create a sustainable and equitable reality where our rivers are enjoyed and protected, a place where families and friends can be inspired and challenged. 

Trib-u-tar-y (noun)

a stream feeding a larger stream or lake

As a tributary feeds its waters to a larger river, we feed our love of what we do to the world at large, providing…

Incredible River Experiences

Dan Buckley guiding on the North Fork American River - Class IV Bogus Thunder Rapid – Spring 1984
Jeremiah Copper guiding on the Middle Fork American River - Class IV+ Chunder Rapid - Summer 2020

Running rivers since 1978…

Tributary Whitewater Tours was founded by Dan Buckley in 1978. He wanted to share the excitement, wonder, and natural beauty that rivers have to offer with others. Since then he has been an integral player in the development of Whitewater Rafting in California.

In March of 2018 Dan sold the company to a young river guide who holds similar aspirations. Jeremiah Copper purchased not only Tributary Whitewater Tours, but also Adventure Connection. This formed one of the largest American River outfitters and we rebranded as RaftCalifornia.com. Over the next few years, Tributary acquired more companies and river permits, including rivers in Oregon & Idaho. The name Raft California was no longer applicable to those locations, thankfully we had kept our official name as Tributary Whitewater and in 2023 have re-branded as our original name. 


Environmental Stewardship

Tributary has always practiced the reuse, recycle mentality, and we continue to progress in ways to protect our environment. Here are many of the efforts we are making to stay green:

  • No single use water bottles – we encourage our guests to bring their own insulated water bottle, if they don’t have one they can purchase one from our store or borrow one from our stash
  • Reusable dishes & utensils – plastic plates and metal utensils are used to all our river trip
  • We practice “Leave no Trace” and encourage all participants on trips to pick up or point out trash on land or river so that we can remove any foreign objects from nature
  • Digital waivers – we try and avoid printing paper waivers and urge or guests to utilize our online waivers that can be signed prior to your rafting trip
  • Less paper in the office – employee schedules and time cards are digital and we offer direct deposit


We are members of numerous conservation and environmental groups and in addition every season we donate nearly $10,000 in gift certificates for fundraising events hosted by Rotary, Big Brothers & Sisters, Kiwanis, March of Dimes, and many other philanthropic organizations.


Since its inception in 1978, Tributary has been actively involved in conservation and environmental issues. Our business & professional affiliations and memberships include America Outdoors, California Outdoors, Sierra Business Council and many Chambers of Commerce and Visitors Bureau’s. We support the following organizations and urge our guests to follow and give when you can.

Permitting agencies

Tributary Whitewater Tours operates under permits from:

Bureau of Land Management (Klamath Falls, Grants Pass, Mother Lode, Prineville, and Vale agencies for the Rogue River, Deschutes South Fork American River, East Carson and Upper Klamath River)

United States Forest Service (Wallowa-Whitman, Klamath, Six Rivers, Shasta-Trinity, Tahoe and Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forests for the Snake River, North Yuba River, Klamath, Cal. Salmon, Scott River, Upper Sacramento, Burnt Ranch Gorge, Trinity and Truckee River)

CA Dept. of Parks & Recreation (Middle, North and South Fork American Rivers)

Nevada County (Truckee River)

El Dorado County (South Fork American River)


Tributary Whitewater Tours / dba Raft California is an Equal Opportunity Service Provider.

In accordance with Federal law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, disability, and reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.)

Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.) should contact the responsible State or local Agency that administers the program or USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TTY) or contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information is also available in languages other than English.

To file a complaint alleging discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, AD-3027, found online at http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_filing_cust.html, or at any USDA office or write a letter addressed to USDA and provided in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by: (1) mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; (2) fax: (202) 690-7442; or (3) email: program.intake@usda.gov.