Description: For those wanting a longer of a whitewater vacation, our Three-Day South and Middle Combo trip is for you. Spend the first two days on the South Fork and then challenge the Middle Fork the third. Three nights of camping and eight meals included.
Our most popular american river rafting trip. Spend three days rafting two different rivers. Day 1 is the Gorge Run on the South Fork American, Day 2 is on the Chili Bar or upper section of the South Fork, and Day 3 is the 18 miles of the Middle Fork, three nights of camping at our private riverside camp, and eight awesome meals.
What is this trip like? CHECK AVAILABILITY
Itinerary: Your 3 Day South Fork American River and Middle Fork American river rafting combo adventure begins the night before your trip with camping at our own private camp area right on the banks of the South Fork American river. Our camp host will meet you and escort you to your assigned camp area and answer any questions you might have about the camp or river rafting trip.
Breakfast the next morning is served by our camp cooks at 8:00 AM (coffee, tea, and hot choc are available earlier for those who just cannot seem to sleep in). After breakfast your guide staff will check you in at 10:00 AM and we all will board our bus for a short ride up to the launching area for our first day rafting adventure on the Gorge Run.
The first day, call the Gorge Run, begins with some bouncy whitewater and even a voluntary out of boat experience through “Swimmer’s Rapid” a fun, small wave train that leads to a huge pond to recover in. A fun way to cool off in the hot summer. Then the river builds and enters the “Gorge”, where the rapids come almost in non stop fashion for 6 miles.
After the trip, it’s back to camp for an outstanding BBQ dinner and drinks expertly prepared by our dedicated camp cooks. Following dinner, our guide staff will have a slide show of you and your crew rafting down the rapids. You will have time after dinner for yourselves, for a camp fire (conditions permitting), or a short hike.
After fueling up at our 8:00 AM breakfast, our second day of rafting begins with what is called the Chili Bar Run. A 10 mile adventure that begins at 9:00 AM at our South Fork Camp area, where your guides will meet you and check you in for the trip. We then board our bus for a 30 min. scenic ride along Gold Country Highway 49, driving right past the Coloma State Park, where gold was first discovered on the American River in 1848, and started the California gold rush. Arriving at our launching point, your guides will help you with your pfd’s (life jackets), helmets, and paddles. We will give a river safety orientation, break up into groups and guides, and then hit the river for a great day adventure on the South Fork of the American river.
Just downstream is our first class 3 rapid, “Meatgrinder”, the longest on the river (not the biggest, though). This section is packed with rapids that will challenge and thrill you, the last of them will be the famous “Troublemaker Rapid”. After troublemaker, we relax in a more mellow section for about an hour, then pull off at Coloma State Park and your guides will prepare our buffet deli-styled lunch with all the trimmings. There will be bathrooms there and places to sit around and talk about the rapids of the morning.
After the trip, it’s back to camp again for another outstanding BBQ dinner and drinks expertly prepared by our dedicated camp cooks. Following dinner, our guide staff will have a slide show of you and your crew rafting down the rapids. You will have time after dinner for yourselves, for a camp fire (conditions permitting), or a short hike.
Breakfast our final morning will be early at 6:30 AM as we begin our Middle Fork American river rafting adventure at 7:00 AM at our base camp meeting area where our guide staff will be there to check you in and answer any questions about the day’s activities. Once everyone is checked in we board our nice air conditioned vans and take a very scenic drive of a little over an hour to the launching area. On this drive you will drive past the confluence of the North Fork American river and Middle Fork American river ( confluence is where two rivers meet and become one).
Once at the put in, our guide staff will help you with the river equipment necessary for the river rafting adventure. Then we will have a river safety orientation, divide up into groups, assign the guides and get on the river. The action starts right of the bat with “Good Morning Rapid”, if you are not awake you will be after this soaking rapid. The river continues to build excitement until you get to the infamous “Tunnel Chute”, where gold miners back in the 1880’s blasted a diversion chute and tunnel into the rocks to divert the river around and into Horseshoe Bend. They then were able to mine the river for many, many ounces of gold.
After completing the “Chute” we head down some more exhilarating rapids and finish the morning session with “Kanaka Falls, a class 4 steep drop that requires expert steering from everyone in the raft.
We now head into the Middle Fork American river’s quiet side, a 7 mile scenic float through one of the most beautiful river canyons in California. We will stop half way into the 7 mile section for lunch at a primitive sandy beach right on the river. Your guides will then pull the lunch coolers out of the rafts and begin to prepare a wonderful assortment of lunch items.
Once back in the rafts we slowly drift down and listen for the sound of “Ruck-A-Chucky Falls”, the beginning of our next set of challenging class 4 rapids. The first one is called “Chunder” an 8′ pour over that gets everyone’s heart pounding. It’s then out of the rafts as the guides portage (line the rafts around) the 25′ falls (you might even witness some of them taking the rafts over the falls themselves! We then load up the rafts and head down 3 miles a super fun class 4 rapids until we get to the heart pounding “Bambi Falls”, where you are welcome to cool off with a swim through a very easy slow class 2 rapid.
At the end of the day, our Vans will be waiting for you with cold drinks and snacks for the 40 min ride back to the meeting area, where again your guide’s will be there to thank you for coming and give you photo coupons good for money off your rapid photo purchase (if you wish).
- Skilled, professional guide service.
- High-quality inflatable rafts, paddles, helmets, personal floatation devices.
- Wetsuits and splash jackets for spring trips only – (if needed).
- Transportation from the meeting place to the river and back.
- Breakfast, lunch, dinner on day 1 &2 and breakfast and lunch on day 3.
- Drinks and snacks at river’s end.
What To Bring:
- River clothing is very casual and you should expect to get wet!
- Bathing suit/trunks, lightweight, quick drying top (rash guard works well).
- lightweight windbreaker for cool mornings, sweatshirt for cool evenings.
- River sandals or old tennis shoes work great (No flip flops or bare feet allowed).
- Hat (optional under helmet).
- Sunglasses (suggest retaining device so they don’t end up in the river).
- Waterproof sunscreen and lip protection.
- Bottle of water (drinks provided at lunch and end of the trip).
- Inexpensive waterproof camera (professional pictures are taken at one of the rapids).
- Dry clothes for trip home (to be left in your car).
- Tent and ground cloth.
- Or rent one of our 4 person dome tents or deluxe cabin tents that sleep 4.
- Sleeping Bag, pad, and pillow.
- Camp clothing (dry shoes, long pants, shorts, shirt, sweatshirt or light jacket).
- Flashlight, lantern, insect repellent.
- Food and drinks ( that are not provided on your trip).
- Campfire wood (we have a limited supply in our camp store).
Please do not bring
- Pets, fireworks, high pressure water guns or firearms.