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South Fork American River

What to Bring on Your
South Fork American Rafting Trip

What's Included

  • Professional Guide, instruction, and equipment (seasonally dependent, see Wetsuit Information for added rental cost.)
  • Delicious fresh meals (varies by itinerary)
  • River shuttle to and from the Meet Place for your trip

What to Wear

  • Athletic shoes that are lace-up or cinch-up
  • Swimsuit
  • Quick drying shorts to wear over swimsuit is recommended for more comfort
  • Thin long-sleeve shirt and pants made out of athletic materials for additional sun protection and/or extra layering
  • Special clothing items, including a wetsuit, are required on trips occurring in spring, late fall and winter, at higher flows, or in inclement weather. View wetsuit and splash jacket rental information and additional layering tips.

Do NOT Wear

  • Flip-flops or open-toed sandals. This is not appropriate for rafting because open-toed shoes do not provide enough protection for your feet while in the raft or during a swim.
  • "Aqua-sock" type footwear, slip-ons, or loose fitting shoes. These slip off easily in the water.
  • Thick cotton clothing. When wet, cotton acts like a sponge and can keep you cool even on a fairly warm day.

What to Bring

  • Personal Medicine
  • Change of clothing for ride home
  • Waterproof sunblock, sunglasses with strap, hat, visor (optional)

While on the river, you need little other than your river attire. There is limited space available in a water-resistant bag for additional items, such as rain gear or medication, that you might need during the day (no towels, please). This bag is usually available only during the lunch stop and at camp.

Do NOT Bring

Pets, expensive watch or jewelry, cell phone, or camera without water protection. Please note that storage of wallets, and other valuables is the participant's responsibility.

Additional Items for Overnight Trips

On South Fork American overnight trips, we stay at campsites where your car is conveniently parked close to your site and bathrooms with hot showers, flush toilets, and electricity make your stay easy and comfortable. Therefore, you can bring as many items as you feel necessary for camping. Your river attire should be packed separately so you can change into it at the Meet Place or put-in.

Packing List

Camp clothes:

  • Pants and/or shorts
  • Shirt
  • Sweatshirt or jacket
  • Dry shoes and socks, or sturdy sandals

Camping Gear:

  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping pad
  • Ground cloth
  • Tent (optional)
  • Toiletry items
  • Insect repellent
  • Flashlight

Optional items for downtime at camp:

  • Journal
  • Book
  • Deck of cards


Camping on the South Fork American River

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Rafting FAQ's

Get all the answers to the most frequently asked questions (FAQ's) regarding minimum age, how to choose a river, what to wear, trips costs and more...

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