River Class Length in Days Meeting Time Approx. End Time
Class 3 1/2 Day 12:00 PM 3:30 PM

Spend an Afternoon Packed with Excitement

Trip Meet Time: 12:00 PM Trip Sat & Sun

End Time: Approx. 3:30 PM

Meeting Location: American River Resort, Coloma CA

Trip Length: 3 Hours

Time on Water: Approx. 2 Hours – 6 River Miles

Rapid Difficulty: Class 3

Intensity: Easy/Beginner/Intermediate

Minimum Age: 6 years

Price: Trips Start at $79

Trip Discounts: 6 -23 people – for every 5 paid rafters the 6th goes half fare, 24 people or more – please call for special pricing


  • The Best Half Day Trip in California
  • Professional, Safe, Fun & Courteous Guides
  • All Safety Equipment Provided – Lifejacket, Helmet & Paddle
  • Free Wet-Suits and Splash Jackets when needed
  • Beautiful Roadless Wilderness Section of River
  • Raft the Biggest Rapids on the South Fork – Troublemaker
  • Continuous Pool & Drop Rapids – Maya, Meatgrinder & Triple Threat
  • All Shuttles from Coloma to Put-In
  • Free Hot Showers at Finish


This is a great “Short and Sweet Afternoon Rafting Trip”! If you want to spend the afternoon on a river rafting adventure or are a first time rafter looking for a fun beginner river rafting trip then the Chili Bar whitewater trip is the best option. After all, it is considered the best Class 3 half day white water rafting trip in California! This 6-mile American River white water rafting voyage from Chili Bar to Coloma will have you paddling continuous class 3 whitewater enjoying some of the best rapids on the South Fork of the American River. This trip will also give you ample time to relax and take in the Sierra Foothills scenery as you float through river pools amid the beauty and history of California Gold Country.

After you arrive at the American River Resort in Coloma you will have time to change into your rafting attire. At the meeting time you will receive a short briefing from your Trip Leader, and you will have a chance to get changed into your river attire. River attire is very casual and you will get wet, so dress accordingly. Quick-dry or non-cotton clothing is recommended because cotton stays wet and does not keep you warm.

The adventure begins with a scenic 20 minute shuttle ride to our launching point at Chili Bar, named for the Chilean gold that settled the area during the gold rush days. Here you will meet your guides and receive a detailed safety talk along with paddling instructions. Then it is all aboard the rafts and on the water! Within the first half-mile of your trip, the excitement begins and tension builds as you hear the raging waters of Meatgrinder, Racehorse Bend, Triple Threat and Trouble Maker, just a few of the rapids that are sure to get your heart pounding. You will arrive back at our river camp at approximately 3:30 PM. Please be aware that a variety of factors may cause a trip to end earlier or later than planned. Take this into consideration when making your travel plans.

The afternoon departure time is available on Saturdays and Sundays on this half-day California river rafting section.

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