The Middle Fork of the American River is a true wilderness rafting experience, secluded timeless beauty full of human history from the Gold Rush era along with some of the biggest rapids rafted in California, including the ultimate in “Big Drops” at the Tunnel Chute Rapid. This stunning 18 mile section of Middle Fork of the American River was pioneered by American Whitewater Expeditions back in the 1970’s and even today, we are leading the way and setting the standard.

Thanks to Jason for putting together this video after his trip!

Ready to Go? Choose your trip and reserve your spot today!

What’s the River Like?
The Class IV Middle Fork rafting trip is an intermediate whitewater river featuring big drops, tons of action and intricate maneuvers. This is an ideal rafting trip for adventurous first timers and those who have rafted the South Fork before but who want even more action, seclusion and beauty. There is a minimum age of 12 and the trip requires all participants to paddle. With a professional guide steering your raft, you will have an extraordinary day of whitewater rafting on this world-class river. Between the big drops and fun rapids there are long calm pools where you will get to take in the sheer beauty of the 2000 foot wilderness canyon that you’re rafting through. You’ll stop halfway for a yummy riverside lunch before getting on the water for more whitewater action. There is a lot of wildlife in the canyon from eagles to river otters and even the occasional bear in the blackberry bushes!

Your Middle Fork rafting trip will take you down the ultimate in “Big Drops” at the Tunnel Chute Rapid. Here the river descends 80 feet through a very narrow chute that is at most 18 feet wide! Then you’ll suddenly find yourself underground for 90 feet traveling through a tunnel blasted by the gold miners long ago. This is a truly memorable rafting trip and every year our guests keep coming back for more.

We offer 6 different Middle Fork rafting experiences on the American River, ranging from one day to multi day trips. You can combine a Middle Fork rafting trip with the South Fork or North Fork for a truly exhilarating and unforgettable multi-day rafting adventure.

When is the best time to go rafting on the Middle Fork?
The Middle Fork rafting season starts early May and we sometime run it in April depending on several natural factors. The Middle Fork of the American River is dam controlled and offers stable and exciting flows all summer long. Early spring trips in April and May can sometimes have slightly higher water levels if there are heavy rains and excessive snowmelt. You can raft the Middle Fork all the way until the weekend after Labor Day.

Where is the Middle Fork Located and where do we meet for the trip?
The Middle Fork of the American River is located 30 minutes from Auburn, 50 miles North East of Sacramento and only 140 miles East of San Francisco.

There are a few meeting options for the Middle Fork rafting trip. So you can pick the one that suits you best.

Option 1: Stay at our deluxe campground in the Historic Gold Rush town of Coloma the night before your trip. Your camping the night before is free!

Option 2: By prior arrangement, you can meet at our Auburn Meeting area at 8:00 AM the morning of your trip. Leave your vehicle at the secure parking area and ride our shuttle to the river. At the end of your trip, you’ll be dropped back at your vehicle. This is a great option for those of you coming from near Sacramento, Reno or the Bay Area.

Option 3: Meet at our Camp in Coloma at 7:00 AM the morning of your trip. Ideal for those living off the I-50 Corridor of Sacramento or driving down from South Lake Tahoe.

Want to stay a while?
There is a lot to do and see in Coloma and the surrounding areas, so why not take a few days. Our location and facilities are truly unique. We are the only rafting company with easy river access that has a privately owned resort campground with great facilities like an in ground swimming pool, stocked bass and trout pond, luxury cabins and lush grass covered campsites. Our private campground in Coloma is located in the middle of the. Just a five minute walk and you are in the middle of Gold Rush History! Coloma is in the heart of El Dorado Wine Country and surrounded by beautiful Hiking, Biking and Equestrian Trails.

So are you ready to spend a day rafting on the Middle Fork and having more fun than a barrel of monkeys?
Check out the Middle Fork American River virtual tour with a rapid-by-rapid description. California State Parks has an excellent site with lots of information about the Middle Fork of the American River and the surrounding area. There is also Middle Fork American River Access Map for people interested in exploring the Middle Fork American River. You can also look at current and historic Middle Fork Flows.

Trip Photography Package Option – Share your Adventure

Photos are taken beginning with the safety talk and continue until the end of your trip. CD’s are available at the completion of your trip from Sierra Nevada Photo. Photos will be shown on the big screen following each trip and during dinner.

Super Deluxe Bus Transportation for Large Groups: Round Trip Available!

For more questions on our Middle Fork Trips or questions in general, please call us at 800-825-3205 or check out FAQ page.


#01 One Day Trip – Middle Fork

Covering 18 river miles, you’ll experience one long, exhilarating day on the river on this truly scenic rafting trip. The ultimate in “Big Drops”, the Middle Fork’s Tunnel Chute Rapid is a one of a kind experience.

WHERE:Oxbow Bend to Greenwood Bridge
LENGTH:18 miles
Class:IV
DEPARTS:7:30 AM every day
LUNCH:Riverside Lunch Included
CAMPING:Camping the night before your trip is FREE
Minimum Age:12 and older.
Middle Fork
Full Day
Monday, Tuesday,
Wednesday, Friday
Thursday special Saturday
or Sunday
Cost Per
Person
$129 $119 $159

8% Government Land & River Use Fee is added to all trip prices. Be sure to check out the family specialgroup rates and last minute specials.

Click Here for Details and ItineraryClick Here to Hide Details and Itinerary

Camp the night before your trip for free. Or arrive the morning of your trip at our River Camp by 7:00 AM or the meeting spot in Auburn by 8:00 AM (by prior arrangement only).

Your Middle Fork rafting adventure begins early as you head for a day of thrills, challenges, and excitement as well as a true wilderness experience. Once at the put-in your guides will unload the rafts, get you all your safety gear and give you a detailed Safety Talk. Once on the water the action starts. You’ll raft the world famous Tunnel Chute Rapid as well as Chunder, Mushroom, and many more. A tasty deli-style lunch will be served along the river. After lunch you’ll hit some big drop and fun rapids. Walk around the Class VI Ruck-a-Chucky and watch your guides takes the boats thru with skill, precision and a degree of luck. Enjoy the rapids and beautiful canyons until you reach the take-out between 3:30 to 4:00 PM for the drive back to Auburn or the Coloma campsite. Ice cold beverages will be provided at the end of your trip.

There are limited spaces available on the Middle Fork. Weekends fill up fast so book soon!

If you are camping with us breakfast before your trip is also available. Additional nights camping after the trip is also available. Please call 1-800-825-3205 or email us for details.

Important Trip Details

The Middle Fork rafting trip is offered every day of the week departing from our River Camp in Coloma or at our Trip Meeting Place in Auburn. Please Click for Directions.

This trip leaves our River Camp at 7:30 AM so it’s imperative that you arrive by 7:00 AM at the latest. This trip leaves the Auburn Meeting Spot at 8:15 AM so its imperative you arrive there by 8:00 AM. Due to the logistics and timing of the Middle Fork, please do not be late for your meeting times.

Get ready for some Middle Fork rafting action! Check out our Equipment List for items you will need for your trip as well as maps and directions to our River Camp.

#02 Two Day Combo – Middle Fork Double Down

Double your fun with 18 miles on the Middle Fork each day for a total of 36 river miles. Even on the second days run its like being on a new river. This is a Middle Fork rafting adventure you will long remember with lots of river time. Go home refreshed, invigorated, smiling and relaxed!

WHERE: Day 1 – Oxbow Bend to Greenwood Bridge on the Middle Fork
Day 2 – Oxbow Bend to Greenwood Bridge on the Middle Fork
LENGTH: 36 miles
Class: IV
DEPARTS: 7:30 AM every day
MEALS: 5 meals included
CAMPING: 2 nights camping is Free
Minimum Age: 12 and older. Youth ages are 12 to 16
Two day Monday & Tuesday
Tuesday & Wednesday
Wednesday & Thursday
Thursday & Friday Special
Friday & Saturday
Sunday & Monday
Saturday & Sunday
Cost Per
Person
Adult Youth Adult Youth Adult Youth Adult Youth
$299 $299 $279 $279 $309 $309 $329 $329

8% Government Land & River Use Fee is added to all trip prices. Be sure to check out the family specialgroup rates and last minute specials.

Click Here for Details and ItineraryClick Here to Hide Details and Itinerary

Arrive the day before your trip at our deluxe river campground, complete with indoor restrooms and free hot showers, swimming pool, volleyball court, and more, situated just above Troublemaker Rapid on the South Fork.

You will begin early each morning on this 2 day Middle Fork Double Down rafting adventure with a delicious continental breakfast before heading off to the raft the Middle Fork. You’ll raft the world famous Tunnel Chute Rapid, Chunder, Mushroom, and many more. You’ll reach the take-out between 3:30 to 4:30 PM for the drive back to the Coloma campsite. A hearty deli-style lunch served riverside and ice cold beverages will be provided each day.
After returning from the river on the first day, you will enjoy some tasty hors d’oeuvres and free time until we serve a delicious dinner prepared by our experienced Chef.

There are limited spaces available on the Middle Fork. Weekends fill up fast so book soon!

Important Trip Details

The Middle Fork Double Down rafting trip is offered every day of the week departing from our River Camp in Coloma or at our Trip Meeting Place in Auburn (by prior arrangement only) if you decide not to stay with us. Please Click for Directions.

Additional nights camping and meals are also available. Please call 1-800-825-3205 or email us for details.

Are you ready for your Middle Fork rafting adventure! Check out our Equipment List for items you will need for your trip as well as maps and directions to our River Camp.

#03 Two Day Combo – South Fork Lower Gorge + Middle Fork

Our most popular two day trip! Warm up on the fun rapids of the South Fork and then head to the Middle Fork for an even more intense run surrounded by breathtaking scenery.

WHERE: Day 1 – Coloma to Salmon Falls on the South Fork
Day 2 – Oxbow Bend to Greenwood Bridge on the Middle Fork
LENGTH: 33 miles (15 miles on the South Fork and 18 miles on the Middle Fork)
Class: III & IV
DEPARTS: Daily except No-Water Wednesdays
MEALS: 5 meals included
CAMPING: 2 nights camping is Free
Minimum Age: 12 and older. Youth ages are 12 to 16
Two Day
COMBO
Trip
Monday & Tuesday
Tuesday & Wednesday
Thursday & Friday
Friday & Saturday
Sunday & Monday
Saturday & Sunday
Cost Per
Person
Adult Youth Adult Youth Adult Youth
$289 $269 $299 $279 $319 $299

8% Government Land & River Use Fee is added to all trip prices. Be sure to check out the family specialgroup rates and last minute specials.

Click Here for Details and ItineraryClick Here to Hide Details and Itinerary

Arrive the day before your rafting trip at our deluxe river campground, complete with indoor restrooms and free hot showers, swimming pool, volleyball court, and more, situated just above Troublemaker Rapid on the South Fork. Your two day South and Middle Fork American river adventure begins the morning of your trip with a hearty breakfast then, after an informative safety talk, you’re off to the American River for a day of fun, laughter, excitement, and lots of exhilarating whitewater.

The first few rapids you’ll encounter on the lower stretch are small but spirited and will allow you to practice your new paddling skills. Then a huge deli-style lunch to match those big, outdoor appetites will be set out for you by the side of the river. After lunch, we’re off to challenge “The Gorge” and experience the excitement of outstanding rapids such as Satan’s Cesspool and Hospital Bar. Just before you hit Folsom Lake our own Honda Jet Ski will meet you for the tow to the take-out at Salmon Falls – this way you avoid a 2 mile paddle out with a headwind.

At the end of the day’s rafting, cold beverages and transportation back to camp await you. At camp you can enjoy some tasty hors d’oeuvres, a hot shower or free time until we serve a delicious healthy dinner with dessert that will satisfy the heartiest appetite.
On the second day of your adventure enjoy a delicious continental breakfast before heading off on your Middle Fork rafting trip for a day of thrills, challenges, and excitement as well as a true wilderness experience. This beautiful river, flowing through rich gold-bearing country, has impressive rapids, including the ultimate in “Big Drops” at the Tunnel Chute Rapid. Here the river descends 80 feet through a very narrow chute. Then you’ll suddenly find yourself underground for 90 feet traveling through a tunnel blasted by the gold miners long ago.

Covering 18 river miles, you’ll experience one long, thrilling day on the river on this adventurous trip. We provide you with a hearty deli lunch along the river and ice-cold beverages at the end of your trip.

There are limited spaces available on the Middle Fork. Weekends fill up fast so book soon!

Important Trip Details

The two day rafting adventure is offered Monday & Tuesday, Tuesday & Wednesday, Thursday & Friday, Friday & Saturday, Saturday & Sunday, or Sunday & Monday. This trip leaves our River Camp at 10:00 AM so it’s imperative that you arrive by 9:30 AM at the latest if you’re not camping with us the night before.
Additional night’s camping and meals are available. Please call us 1-800-825-3205 or contact us for details.

Get ready for some Middle Fork rafting action! Check out our Equipment List for items you will need for your trip as well as maps and directions to our River Camp.

#04 Two Day Combo – Middle Fork + South Fork Chili Bar

GO BIG….then go home! Go big through the world-class drops on the Class IV Middle Fork. Spend the next morning splashing down continuous whitewater on the South Fork Chili Bar Run. Perfect for those who need to GO BIG and then head home after lunch on the second day.

WHERE: Day 1 – Oxbow Bend to Greenwood Bridge on the Middle Fork
Day 2 – Chili Bar to Coloma on the South Fork
LENGTH: 24 miles (18 miles on the Middle Fork and 6 miles on the South Fork)
Class: III & IV
DEPARTS: Daily except Tuesdays
MEALS: 5 meals included
CAMPING: 2 nights camping is Free
Minimum Age: 12 and older. Youth ages are 12 to 16
Two Day
COMBO
Trip
Monday & Tuesday
Wednesday & Thursday
Thursday
& Friday Special
Friday & Saturday
Sunday & Monday
Saturday & Sunday
Cost Per
Person
Adult Youth Adult Youth Adult Youth Adult Youth
$279 $259 $259 $239 $289 $269 $309 $289

8% Government Land & River Use Fee is added to all trip prices. Be sure to check out the family specialgroup rates and last minute specials.

Click Here for Details and ItineraryClick Here to Hide Details and Itinerary

On this Middle Fork rafting trip, you’ll raft the entire 18 miles of the scenic Middle Fork, then return to our deluxe campground where you can relax and make use of all the amenities. The next day’s rafting will be on the lively Chili Bar run of the South Fork. Your second day ends by 1:30 PM leaving you plenty of time for your drive back home.

Arrive the day before your trip at our deluxe river campground, complete with indoor restrooms and free hot showers, swimming pool, volleyball court, and more, situated just above Troublemaker Rapid on the South Fork.

Your rafting adventure begins early following a delicious continental breakfast. Heading off to the Middle Fork for a day of thrills, challenges, and excitement as well as a true wilderness rafting experience. This beautiful river, flowing through rich gold-bearing country, has impressive rapids, including the ultimate in “Big Drops” at the Tunnel Chute Rapid. Here the river descends 80 feet through a very narrow chute. Then you’ll suddenly find yourself underground for 90 feet traveling through a tunnel blasted by the gold miners long ago.

Covering 18 river miles, you’ll experience one long, thrilling day on the river on this adventurous trip. We provide you with a hearty deli lunch along the river and ice-cold beverages at the end of your trip.

At our camp you can enjoy some tasty hors d’oeuvres, a hot shower or free time until we serve a delicious, healthy dinner with dessert that will satisfy the heartiest appetite.

Your second day begins after a hearty hot breakfast and drive up to the top of the South Fork at Chili Bar. On the Chili Bar Run, the action starts right off the bat and is almost non-stop. You will raft down some challenging Class III rapids including Meat Grinder, Triple Threat, and Troublemaker as well as lots of smaller ones.

At the end of the mornings rafting, head up back up to camp to freshen up for a Camp Lunch and the drive home.

There are limited spaces available on the Middle Fork. Weekends fill up fast so book soon!

Important Trip Details

This Middle Fork rafting trip is offered on Monday & Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday, Thursday & Friday, Friday & Saturday, Saturday & Sunday, and Sunday & Monday.
This rafting trip leaves our River Camp at 7:30 AM so it’s imperative that you arrive by 7:00 AM at the latest if you’re not camping with us the night before.
Additional night’s camping and meals are available. Please call us 1-800-825-3205 or contact us for details.

Get ready for some superb Middle Fork rafting and South Fork rafting action! Check out our Equipment List for items you will need for your trip as well as maps and directions to our River Camp.

#05 Two Day Super Combo – South Fork Whole River + Middle Fork

If you want maximum river miles in two days than this trip is for you. Spend all day on the fun rapids of the South Fork learning the ropes and then step it up on the Middle Fork showing off your paddle skills.

WHERE: Day 1 – Chili Bar to Folsom Lake on the South Fork
Day 2 – Oxbow Bend to Greenwood Bridge on the Middle Fork
LENGTH: 39 miles (18 miles on the Middle Fork and 21 miles on the South Fork)
Class: III & IV
DEPARTS: Daily except No-Water Wednesdays
MEALS: 5 meals included
CAMPING: 2 nights camping is Free
Minimum Age: 12 and older. Youth ages are 12 to 16
Super
Combo
Monday & Tuesday
Tuesday & Wednesday
Thursday &
Friday Special
Friday & Saturday
Sunday & Monday
Saturday & Sunday
Cost Per
Person
Adult Youth Adult Youth Adult Youth Adult Youth
$309 $289 $289 $269 $319 $299 $339 $319

8% Government Land & River Use Fee is added to all trip prices. Be sure to check out the family specialgroup rates and last minute specials.

Click Here for Details and ItineraryClick Here to Hide Details and Itinerary

This unique American River rafting combo trip is recommended for those who are looking for maximum river time and an exciting challenge.

Arrive the day before your trip at our deluxe river campground, complete with indoor restrooms and free hot showers, swimming pool, volleyball court, and more, situated just above Troublemaker Rapid on the South Fork. Your two day river adventure begins with a hearty hot breakfast then you’re off to the top of the South Fork of the American River for a full day of fun, laughter, excitement, and lots of exhilarating whitewater.

Once on the South Fork, the action starts right off the bat and is almost non-stop. You will raft down challenging Class III rapids including Meatgrinder, Triple Threat, and Troublemaker as well as lots of smaller ones.

After a relaxing deli-style lunch, we’re off to challenge “The Gorge” and experience the excitement of outstanding rapids such as Satan’s Cesspool and Hospital Bar. Just before you hit Folsom Lake our own Honda Jet Ski will meet you for the tow to the take-out at Salmon Falls – this way you avoid a 2 mile paddle out with a headwind.

At the end of the day’s rafting, cold beverages and transportation back to camp await you. At camp you can enjoy some tasty hors d’oeuvres, a hot shower or free time until we serve a delicious, healthy dinner with dessert that will satisfy the heartiest appetite.
Rise and shine for an early continental breakfast before heading off to the Middle Fork for a day of thrills, challenges, and excitement set in a true wilderness setting. This beautiful river, flowing through rich gold-bearing country, has impressive rapids, including the ultimate in “Big Drops” at the Tunnel Chute Rapid. Here the river descends 80 feet through a very narrow chute. Then you’ll suddenly find yourself underground for 90 feet traveling through a tunnel blasted by the gold miners long ago.

Covering 18 river miles, you’ll experience one long, thrilling day on the river on this adventurous trip. We provide you with a hearty deli lunch along the river and ice-cold beverages at the end of your trip.

There are limited spaces available on the Middle Fork and weekends fill up fast so book soon!

Important Trip Details

This two day rafting adventure is offered Monday & Tuesday, Tuesday & Wednesday, Thursday & Friday, Friday & Saturday, Saturday & Sunday, and Sunday & Monday. Departing from our River Camp in Coloma. Please Click for Directions.
Additional night’s camping and meals are available. Please call us 1-800-825-3205 or contact us for details.

Get ready for some Middle Fork rafting action! Check out our Equipment List for items you will need for your trips as well as maps and directions to our River Camp.

#06 Three Day Any Way Combo – Middle Fork + South Fork Lower Gorge + Chili Bar Run

WHERE: Three Day Any Way Combo – South Fork Lower Gorge + Middle Fork + South Fork Chili Bar Run
Three Day Any Way Combo – South Fork Lower Gorge + Middle Fork + South Fork Chili Bar RunChili Bar Run on the South Fork
LENGTH: 39 miles (18 miles on the Middle Fork and 21 miles on the South Fork)
Class: III & IV
DEPARTS: Customized reservation
MEALS: 7 meals included
CAMPING: 3 nights camping is Free
Minimum Age: 12 and older. Youth ages are 12 to 16
Three Day
COMBO
Midweek Friday, Saturday, & Sunday
Saturday, Sunday, & Monday
Adult $379 $399
Youth $359 $379

8% Government Land & River Use Fee is added to all trip prices. Be sure to check out the family specialgroup rates and last minute specials.

Click Here for Details and ItineraryClick Here to Hide Details and Itinerary

Raft the South Fork Lower Gorge, South Fork Chili Bar Run, and the Middle Fork in any order you like. This rafting trip is customized to fit your holiday schedule so please call us to organize this 3 Day Any Way Combo.

This Middle Fork and South Fork Rafting trip includes 3 nights camping and 7 meals, three breakfasts, three lunches and one dinner. There are several local restaurants in Coloma, Placerville and Auburn, or bring your own food.

There are limited spaces available on the Middle Fork. Weekends fill up fast so book soon!

Additional night’s camping and meals are available. Please call us 1-800-825-3205 or contact us for details.

Please check our rafting Equipment List for items you will need for your trip as well as maps and directions to our River Camp.