How to Enjoy the Best Whitewater Rafting in California

Embark on an incredible adventure this year! Northern California offers several opportunities to get out for some excitement. One of these options that you absolutely must experience is rafting down the American River. Here, you can find some of the best whitewater rafting in California! Read on to learn about how you can experience it for yourself!

In addition to some of the best whitewater rafting in California, the Placerville area offers convenient access to a long list of fun activities and attractions. Hike through the Sierra Foothills, visit top-rated vineyards and wineries, check out shops and restaurants downtown, and more

Everything You Need to Know About the Best Whitewater Rafting in California

The Adventures

There are three distinct areas available for exciting whitewater rafting trips. Along the American River, you can find the South Fork, Middle Fork, and North Fork sections. Each is unique in its own way, offering options for any traveler.

People whitewater rafting on the American River


If you’re new to rafting, or just want a relatively calm experience, the South Fork is for you. It’s the most popular option, featuring class III rapids with calm pools and views of the Sierra Foothills. For a little more excitement, consider the Middle Fork of the American River. Enjoy class IV rapids through a massive canyon in the forest. Finally, while it’s only available for trips in the springtime, the North Fork is sure to get your adrenaline pumping. This section is only recommended for rafters with intermediate to expert experience levels, but offers a whole new level of thrill with deep drops and splashing rapids.

We help schedule your trip and even get you an exclusive discount on your adventure!

The Guides

Whether you’re an expert or are trying it for the first time, you can rest assured we have excellent companies nearby to take you rafting. All-Outdoors California Whitewater Rafting is a great option with over 50 years of experience! Their professional guides will take you for single-day or multi-day trips depending on your preference. You even get to enjoy freshly made meals on your adventure!

Another fantastic local company is Tributary Whitewater Tours. Since 1978, they have been guiding rafters on exceptional journeys. They provide all the safety equipment you need, and if you choose to raft for multiple days, they set up a tent and cook for you!

Be sure to consider OARS for your adventure as well! Choose from their variety of packages, including options for trying two sections of the American River in one trip. You can even enjoy picnic lunches along the river!

Where to Stay Nearby


Comfortable bed by wide window in the Live Oak roomIn order to experience whitewater rafting in Northern California, we encourage you to stay nearby at Eden Vale Inn. Our bed and breakfast sits on ten beautiful acres of landscape and gardens, offering the perfect backdrop for relaxation. We offer spa services, gourmet breakfasts, concierge services, and more.

Step inside one of our luxurious guest rooms, Live Oak. This cozy, private room provides a welcoming atmosphere with views of the garden. Warm up by the fireplace, relax on your private deck in the soaking tub, and settle in for the evening in the comfortable queen size bed. Whichever one of our excellent rooms you choose, you’re in for a top-notch experience in Placerville. Check our availability and book your stay today!