Feisty fish and fierce rapids are the calling cards for the Upper Klamath, California's second-longest river. Kayaks, canoes, rafts, and, at points, power boats tackle the Klamath, which roughly translated from Chinook means swiftness. Salmon and steelhead attract fall and winter anglers, while summer's made to order for trout. Dam-controlled flows create electrifying ribbons of whitewater through Satan's Gate and Hell's Corner rapids. And the river is a popular wayside for migrating birds. The list of frequent flyers includes blue and green herons, lots of eagles, cormorants, and even pelicans. It's a kinder, gentler float from the Oregon border to Copco Lake through open country littered with remains of mines, ranches, mills, and even a historic 19th century health spa.
Rafting the Upper Klamath and 17 other top California rivers
Rafting the Klamath River from Oregon to California
When to Go:
Year-round for fishing; whitewater in spring-late summer.
I-5 to Ore. Hwy. 66, then W. to John Boyle Power House. Copco Lake. Irongate Reservoir. I-5 Crossing. Confluence with the Shasta. Put-in: John Boyle Power House, Stateline Access, Take-out: Same as put-in, except for John Boyle Power House.
California, II-III; Oregon, Class V
Local BLM Office:
Redding Resource Area
355 Hemsted Dr.
Redding, CA 96002
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication