Difficulty: Beginner to Intermediate
Rating: Class 2-4+
Minimum Age: 12-13 years
Length: 38 miles
Time: 10:30am day 1 - 4:30/5:00pm day 3
Price: Starting at $429 [ VIEW PRICES ]
7 meals and 2 nights camping included.
[ AREA INFORMATION ] Motels, Camping, Restaurants & More
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This 3 day combo trip starts with 2 days on the South Fork American River before stepping up to the more exciting Class 4 action on the Middle Fork American River on the 3rd day. This American River Rafting trip is great for adventurous first time rafters who prefer camping at an established campground and suitable for families with teenagers.
The first morning we meet you at camp and transport you to the put-in at the Hwy 49 bridge for your South Fork American River “Gorge” rafting trip. You receive pre-trip instruction before launching. The pace is fairly gentle to start, with 4 miles of Class 2 rapids to warm up on, before we pull into camp for a delicious riverside lunch spread. After lunch the excitement builds on the remaining 9 miles – the rafts enter the ‘Gorge’ where the rapids occur frequently, with many Class 3-3+ rapids like ‘Fowler’s Rock’, ‘Satan’s Cesspool’, ‘Bouncing Rock’, and ‘Hospital Bar’. There are numerous milder and fun rapids along the way. The raft trip ends at Folsom Lake where you are served ice cold drinks as you are returned by bus to the meeting location/camp.
You will spend the night at our exclusive camp site at Rivers Bend, which has flush toilets, hot showers, volleyball net and horseshoe pits. If you did not arrive the night before, you will have time to set-up camp. Then time for swimming, volleyball, frisbee, or simply relax with a cold drink. In the early evening, appetizers are served and a delicious 3 course dinner is prepared by your guides and is accompanied with a moderate amount of beer, wine, and soft drinks. After dinner, the day’s photos will be available to view in camp and you can relax around the camp fire.
On the second morning, awake to the sound of the river, the aroma of coffee brewing and breakfast being prepared by your amazing river guides. We will usually depart from camp by 9:00 am for our put-in on the “Chili Bar” run which begins quickly with the Class 3 ‘Meatgrinder’ rapid and continues for the next 5+ miles with ‘Racehorse Bend’, ‘Rock Garden’, ‘Triple Threat’, the infamous Class 3+ ‘Troublemaker’ and others. Another great riverside lunch is usually served at Marshall Gold Discovery State Historic Park, so clients can check out some of the exhibits or the museum while lunch is prepared. After lunch the river slows and we raft either to the 49 bridge or back into camp where you are greeted with ice cold drinks.
You will spend another night at our Rivers Bend Camp with dinner and more relaxation.
On the morning of day 3, due to the 17 miles on the Middle Fork American River and travel time to get to this section of river, an early start from camp is necessary. Personal gear needs to be packed while the guides prepare a continental breakfast and plan on departure from camp no later than 8:00 am. We caravan to Auburn and from here; we transport you through Foresthill to the put-in below Oxbow Reservoir. The famed Class 4+ ‘Tunnel Chute’ is encountered early in the trip, and this is followed by numerous Class 3 rapids and the Class 4+ ‘Kanaka’. Lunch is served on a beach during the easier stretch of Class 2 in the middle of the river. Just below the entrance of Canyon Creek the Class 4 adrenaline rush kicks back in with the Ruck-a-Chucky rapids. ‘Upper Ruck-A-Chucky’ (AKA ‘Chunder’) is the first in this series followed by the falls which is a 20′ drop through a sieve of huge boulders and a mandatory portage for clients. ‘Lower Ruck-a-Chucky’ (AKA ‘Cleavage’) immediately follows and is a fun “surf” spot. We make our way thru a 2 mile gorge laced with numerous Class 3-4 rapids such as ‘Parallel Parking’ and ‘Catapult’ (‘AKA 101 Airborne’). We take out at Drivers Flat Road (old Greenwood Bridge site) and you are served cold drinks before you load up for your return to Auburn.