Pictures from a Middle Fork Three-Day Trip: So Much More Than Rafting

Posted August 21, 2006 by Robyn Suddeth

IMGP0061.JPGI took the waterproof camera along with me for my last three day trip on the Middle Fork American River. My goal was to capture all the things about that canyon worth experiencing aside from its fun rapids; all those things much thouroughly experienced when you give yourself just a little more time…

It’s true that in one day on the Middle Fork of the American River, you’ll get the thrill of rapids like Tunnel Chute, and enjoy the beautyIMGP0002.JPG of towering canyon walls and crystal clear waters. You may even see a fish jump, or a river otter shyly surface. It will be an incredible day, exhilerating and exciting, and you will most likely go home with that feeling of happy exhaustion that comes after doing something well worth the effort.

There are, however, also a lot of things you will miss.
IMGP0104.JPGA canyon as dynamic and rich as the Middle Fork American needs a little more time to really show off its true value. There are side hikes to slot canyons and hidden waterfalls, old abandoned gold mines, small beaches with warm, smooth rocks perfect for warming up on after a mid-day swim, and creeks with swimming holes. And even more important, there’s time: Time to venture out on your own for a while in inflatable kayaks, to skip rocks in the morning, to use the bottom of a raft as a slip-n-slide,and to just sit and enjoy one or two evenings away from everything else.

IMGP0098.JPGAnd so, I’ve tried to share with you some pictures from that last 3-Day I did, hopefully with the end result of encouraging a few people who haven’t yet to try actually spending the night on a river. Sitting by moving water illuminated by the moon is enough by itself to make the journey worth it, but everything else just makes it all the better. Enjoy the pictures!

Walking Through Waterfalls In Dardnelle’s Creek:





Lazy Afternoon of Inflatable Kayaking and “Wildlife Discovery”:




A Beautiful Morning At Camp 6:









Hike Up Canyon Creek:





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