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Archive for the 'Goodwin Canyon' Category

So Many Reasons To Be Thankful

November 16th, 2012 by Amy diVittorio

Mark Dubois and George Armstrong at the CRA

As it is the month of Thanksgiving I’d say it’s time to count some of our blessings here at AO. Last month AO’s founding father, George Armstrong, was honored at the C.R.A. Gala. George received the Mark Dubois Award for his leading role in furthering river conservation. In the 60′s George pioneered an outdoor education program at Mount Diablo High School where he was a teacher. It was called Summit Seekers. At the Gala I met Terry, a student of his who became a leader in the program. She says that nothing remotely similar existed at the time in the area and that what George had started was groundbreaking.  He was leading groups of teens into the backwoods, down remote rivers, and up rock cliffs.  His students learned life skills, survival skills, an appreciation for nature and an appreciation for the swift hand of discipline.  Oh yes, if you hang with George’s former students long enough you’ll hear some fun stories. Like the time George took the Summit Seekers on a snow camping trip and found some students drinking alcohol in a tent. You’d think he would have confiscated the liquor, returned to his tent, and poured himself a stiff drink, right? Like any other adult leading teens on a snow camping trip would be tempted to do, right? Wrong. George ended the excursion then and there. They got out of bed, they packed up, they hiked back the to cars, and left for home… at 2 in the morning… in a snow storm. (Yes, I know it sounds crazy and, I think you are getting the point.) I could go on and on, as can George’s students and children. He has created a rich and spirited tradition of adventure in the outdoors coupled with a deep understanding of the need to respect and protect the land we love.  I am fortunate to work for a company with roots as deep and pure as these. It is a rare and blessed thing.

Goodwin Canyon 2012

I mean, if it weren’t for George (and our dedicated, hardcore, bad-to-the-bone guests) we wouldn’t have been on  Goodwin Canyon just three weeks ago having a BALL! And, I had better not leave out a big thank you to Mother Nature. We have already had two great storms, the Sierras are snow-capped, AND we have 5-6 days of rain ahead.  I repeat…there are so many reasons to be thankful. Happy Thanksgiving!

Goodwin Canyon Days Extended

October 17th, 2012 by Amy diVittorio

Yes, the secret got about Goodwin Canyon Days and the first weekend is full.  So, we are offering the special itinerary of double runs + BBQ on Saturday, Oct. 27th.  We call that Goodwin Canyon Days and most people out there call it a steal.  But you don’t have to take my word for it – you can read the Goodwin Canyon feedback for yourself.

We hope to see you soon on Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. For a preview check out the video below taken by one of our guests.  It was a wild ride indeed.

YouTube Preview Image

Goodwin Canyon Returns: Special Event and Itinerary Added!

September 25th, 2012 by aorafting

Every fall, Goodwin Canyon, a Class IV-IV+ river, makes an appearance for a short (and very exciting) two weeks. While it runs, we always want to take full advantage of this once a year phenomenon! This year is no exception. We will be ready to launch as soon as the water reaches optimum levels on Thursday, October 17th. In addition to our normal 1-Day itinerary, we’re celebrating this river with a special event and itinerary option! Here’s more info: (more…)

Class IV Rafting in October

September 21st, 2012 by cameron

Class IV rafting is reborn this October. Much like the phoenix, which expires and then is reborn in fire, class IV rafting will wear itself out at the end of September as the Middle Fork American River loses rafting flows but then resurges in the middle of October as the Goodwin Canyon opens for a limited time.

Quick, take out your planner, computer or smart phone and put these dates in it: October 17-October 29, October 19-October 22. These are our dates to run the Goodwin Canyon.

You might notice that the second set of dates happens within the first set. Well on these middle days we are going to be doing some special trips down the canyon; double runs with a barbecue lunch in between. That’s twice rafting and some tasty grilled food for exactly the same price.

Some things about the river: it flows through a beautiful and unique canyon. In place of granite boulders, marble-patterned igneous (volcano formed) rock frames the clear, blue-green water. The canyon walls are steep and high, and at the banks of the river are willows and cottonwoods. The milage is short, but the rapids are well worth it. Mr. Toads and Haunted House are powerful class IV+ rapids that provide a shock of adrenaline. Few people run the Goodwin Canyon, so you’ll be in for a rare rafting experience through a canyon not many people get to see.

Check out some footage of Haunted House:

Hello Goodwin Canyon

September 10th, 2012 by Malina

One door closes, another one opens…….as we say ciao-cito to the Tuolumne and Cherry Creek this week we’re happy to announce that Goodwin Canyon will soon be online once again!   A limited number of trips will be available Oct 17th to October 29th so you’ve only got a couple weeks to experience this unique class III-IV+ river.  Check out reviews from Goodwin Canyon rafters in 2011 or watch a brief Goodwin Canyon video to see what’s what about this rare opportunity.

Goodwin Canyon Fall 2012

July 30th, 2012 by Malina

There are plenty of options for California rafting right now, but don’t forget that in mid-October we’ll be hosting a series of rafting trips on Goodwin Canyon.  This is an unusual river trip because while most of the rapids are class III, there are two impressive Class IV+ rapids that spice up the day–Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride and Haunted House.  The canyon itself is also unusual because of its frequent waterfalls and lush environment in the midst of California Gold Rush country.  This river is also only 1.5-2  hours from the Bay Area so you could have a fabulous adventure on the water and still make it back for dinner at Zuni or some other hot spot . . .

We’ll give you more details about specific intineraries for Goodwin Canyon rafting a little later in the season!

Update on 2012 Goodwin Canyon Rafting Season

May 15th, 2012 by Malina

So if a tree falls in Goodwin Canyon, does it matter if no rafters were there to see it?  Turns out it does!  We were all set for a great little spring season on Goodwin Canyon but as soon as our bags were packed we had to re-rack because there is literally a tree blocking our path!  Nothing to do but look forward to the fall when the tree will be removed and we’ll have smooth sailing.  What can you do — rivers and conditions change all the time!  So, if you were psyched about a Class IV rafting trip on Goodwin this year, we’ll see you in a few months!  In the meantime, there’s always the Middle Fork of the American……or the Tuolumne!

Goodwin Canyon Season Looks Great for 2012

May 1st, 2012 by Malina

One of the “silver linings” of the snowpack/flow situation here in California this year is the opportunity to do spring raft trips on Goodwin Canyon.  As with last year, we’ll host our popular “Goodwin Canyon Days” in the Fall (more info on that later!), but we also have the chance to raft this unusual class IV run from now until May 24 as well.

Why so unusual?  Well, Goodwin Canyon is an isolated section of the Stanislaus River that offers a crazy combo of a steep volcanic gorge, a lush riparian environment (that’s fancy talk for “lots of greenery along the riverbank”), and a couple intense rapids punctuated by long mellow class III sections.  Sometimes there are even waterfalls along the river banks.  Goodwin Canyon is also super close to the Bay Area making it a quick getaway for you denizens of The City and surrounding areas.  Go to the Ferry Building or visit the de Young another weekend–check out Goodwin Canyon this spring instead!

Don’t take my word for it–read Goodwin Canyon rafting reviews from other rafters.

(Above: Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride, class 4+ rapid on Goodwin Canyon)

Early October Rafting Update

October 4th, 2011 by Malina

Fall is officially here, but we are still officially rafting!  The Middle Fork of the American ended its season over the weekend, but we still have two fabulous California rivers we would love to share with you!  The South Fork of the American is of course still going strong.  No surprises there.  Class III rapids, changing fall colors, lots of privacy on the river–what’s not to love? 

The surprise of the season is that we can still offer you a class IV river trip on Goodwin Canyon, a finicky  river that needs everything to line up just so in order to be runnable.  And lucky for us, it’s runnable now  until the end of the month.  See what recent Goodwin rafters have had to say on our Goodwin reviews page.

(Above:  Class IV challenges on Goodwin Canyon . . .)

Goodwin Canyon is making a guest appearance for AO!

September 15th, 2011 by Jeremy

Are you one of those rafters who has taken down all that AO has to offer? You’ve mastered Cherry Creek, know both sections of the South Fork better than your own children, and could probably guide a raft down Tunnel Chute? Well then first of all, thanks for being awesome.

But also, we have a new challenge for you this season! Because of the insane snow melt and long-lasting flows, the Goodwin Canyon run is now going to be opened to AO trips, starting TODAY! It’s a rare gem that we are all too excited to put rafters on for the next month or so.

Though Goodwin Canyon is just a 4-mile run, it’s got the chops to make for a crazy day on the river. If you hop on a trip here, expect a bunch of fun class III’s, broken up by two HUGE class IV’s. There is also a big class V-VI that we portage, called Matterhorn. One of the coolest features of the river is that you are paddling through a volcanic gorge!

Also, who doesn’t love having the river to themselves all day? Here at AO, we definitely do! And while we can’t guarantee nobody else will be out there, it’s rare to see another outfitter patrolling the Goodwin Canyon waters.

So if you are looking for that last-minute, end of season white water fix, give us a call and book your trip for Goodwin Canyon today!

Oh, and if you want to see this river in action, watch a video here. You can also read customer reviews.