Whitewater Rafting Near Yosemite
Tuolumne River Whitewater Rafting
The Main Tuolumne and Cherry Creek are classic California whitewater rafting runs. The Tuolumne is an advanced Class IV-V river and the Creek is V+, experts only. The Main Tuolumne and Cherry Creek are located 30 minutes west of Yosemite National Park, with some of the best California whitewater rafting in the Sierra Nevada foothills. California whitewater enthusiasts have been rafting on the Tuolumne since the 60’s.
The Main Tuolumne is located just west of Yosemite National Park, with some of the best California whitewater rafting in the Sierra Foothills. The Tuolumne is a premier California whitewater rafting river, and is also considered one of the all-time Classic California whitewater rafting runs. The run starts at Meral’s Pool and flows through 18 miles of intense boulder slalom rapids down to Ward’s Ferry. Not only does this river offer challenging whitewater rafting, add excellent scenery and solitude and you get the Tuolumne.
Cherry Creek is an experts only run rated Class V+. With an overall gradient of 110 feet per mile and a “Miracle Mile” dropping at over 200 feet per mile, Cherry Creek is possibly the most challenging whitewater rafting run in the nation. Once the winter snowpack has finished melting and spring rivers run short on water, river flows suitable for whitewater rafting allow Cherry Creek to run as late as October.
Only two small 20-person commercial trips are allowed in the canyon per day, so you will always feel like one of the few privileged humans in this wonderful place.”
Rafting Through Yosemite on the Merced River
The Merced River tumbles over the cascading Nevada and Vernal Falls of Yosemite National Park. The river meanders along the valley floor through Yosemite and builds into a river of pure whitewater.
With its’ steep gradient, sweeping bends, and few obstacles to negotiate the Merced provides long straight forward rapids with big rolling waves. This Class IV river is an excellent step up into the realm of advanced California whitewater rafting.
Wild and Scenic, the Merced is a free flowing river and only runs in the spring from April to July depending on winter snowpack. The Merced has 2 sections of river, both are excellent California whitewater rafting run’s, with plenty of Class IV whitewater. There are several camping options along the river if you chose to string both sections together for a 2-day trip. Otherwise there are other camping options with a close proximity to the river. River Shuttles to the different access points are fairly straight forward.