Lower South Fork American River: The Gorge
This popular trip starts with a relaxed pace for the first 4 miles with some rocks to jump off and rapids to swim in. Then we raft down the South Fork Gorge through really fun Class III and III+ rapids like Fowler’s Rock, Satan’s Cesspool and Hospital Bar!
What to Expect on Your Gorge Rafting Adventure
We’ll meet up at Camp Lotus at 12pm sharp and start by getting all the waivers signed. Then we’ll set you up with your helmet, paddle and personal flotation device. The head guide will deliver a short safety briefing to the whole group before we assign a guide for each raft.
Next, your group will carry the raft down to the water. Once on board your guide will conduct a quick in-water orientation and give some tips on paddling technique and rafting team work. Then we’ll be ready to hit the rapids!
A Gentle Introduction... Before Fowler's Rock!
Once we set off all boats will stay together as we head down river starting with a fairly relaxed pace. The first four miles we’ll cruise through some smaller rapids, get the opportunity to swim in the rapids and jump off some rocks.
You’ll have some time to get ready for Fowler’s Rock which is your first challenge. Don’t worry, your guide will prepare you before every rapid.
Get Ready for a Surprise!
We’ll keep heading down river and hitting a lots of fun rapids along the way in preparation for the Hospital Bar. Our last big rapid is the super-fun Surprise Rapid! Once you’ve conquered this then it’ll be smooth sailing into Lake Folsom, arriving around 4.30pm.
Then we’ll bus you back to Camp Lotus where we’ll enjoy some chips, salsa and ice cold drinks. We hope you enjoyed your American River rafting experience with Sierra Whitewater!
Good to Know
- Start times are based on dam releases that provide sufficient water for rafting so don’t be late! Let us know ASAP if you’re at ANY risk of being late!
- Overnight camping is available at Camp Lotus with hot showers, flush toilets, fire pits and barbecues as well as a camp store and deli. Contact us for more information.
- Let us know well in advance if you’ve booked separately from your friends but want to be together.
- We recommend bringing additional cool weather clothing in April, May, September & October.
- Photographers are a separate entity and cannot be guaranteed.
- If you have a request for a specific guide, let us know in advance and we’ll do our best to organize it.
- Youths and people under 90lbs require a different life jacket. Please let us know in advance.
Marci M., Roseville, Calif.
My husband and I just went for our anniversary and we had a blast...
Penne U., Shingle Springs, Calif.
I've been down the American several times -- and always with Deric as the guide....
Zachary M., Lincoln, Calif.
If you go down the American River, it needs to be with this company!