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Paddlesports Schools:

Otter Bar Lodge Kayak School
Located in:
Forks of Salmon, CA

More Details
Our Website
Otter Bar offers all skill levels of whitewater kayak instruction based out of our wilderness lodge on California's pristine Salmo (more...)
site home  :: self guided home  :: U.S. river guide  :: Rivers in California  :: Klamath River California  :: Happy Camp Kayak & Canoe Touring

Happy Camp Kayak & Canoe Touring on the Klamath River

Rattlesnake Rapid, Class III+ at 1300 cfs
Ukonom Falls

View larger map of Happy Camp & get directions
Click 'Earth' to fly through the canyon!
Happy Camp Info
Use this information at your own risk. See our legal notices.
Put In:  Happy Camp
Take Out:  Green Riffle
Difficulty:  Class I , Class II , Class III , Class IV Dragons Tooth Rapid
Gradient:  17 ft/mi
Run Length:  37.5 miles
Current Streamflow:  996 cfs @ 12/14/2016 09:15 AM - KLAMATH R BL IRON GATE DAM CA, reading taken from USGS
Flow Information (phone):  Department of Water Resources; 916-653-9647.
Good Level:  1,000 - 2,000 cfs is optimum flow
Streamflow Comments: 

For a first time down the Optimum flow is 1,000 - 2,000 cfs. This section of river is also runnable at 2,500 - 3,500, at these medium high flows expect some rapids to become class IV. Low levels for this section are near 500 cfs, doable but not recommended. Also this section has been run at high levels, 10,000 - 15,000 cfs, only advanced boaters should run this section at high levels.

Season Comments:  January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November
Primary Season: 

A great time to run this section of river is in the heat of summer. Summer usually offers good water levels and warm water. During the rainy season swollen side streams have been known to double the flow of this section.

Permit:  None presently required.
Character/Similar To:  This river has the unique combination of moderate rapids, warm water, easy access, superb scenery, abundant wildlife, excellent camping, and fairly light use making it one of the state's best floats.
Hazards:  Don't run Ishi Pishi Falls, located 3 miles downriver of the Green Riffle Access Point. There are many class II/III rapids. At high water levels, above 3,000 cfs, some rapids washout while others become class IV. Always watch for snakes, scorpions, bears, and poison oak.
Water Craft:  kayak,wwcan,raft
Land Ownership:  Mixed National Forest and private.
Wilderness:  No
Camping on River:  Numerous developed and primitive campsites along the river and highway 96. Many large beaches.
Location:  In the Pacific Region (CA), 322 miles Northwest of Sacramento
Shuttle Logistics: 

Put-in: Turn off of I-5, 4.9 miles north of Yreka and follow Hwy 96 downstream until you reach Happy Camp. Once at Happy Camp, cross the river and follow the signs to Curley Jack Campground.

Take-out: Go west on Hwy 96 and continue for about 38 miles and turn into Green Riffle access point. You'll see several access points downstream of Happy Camp that can be used as well. Green Riffle is the last access point before Class VI Ishi Pishi Falls.

Towns near Happy Camp Kayaking

Arcata California
Ashland Oregon
Eureka California
Gold Beach Oregon
Klamath Falls Oregon
Mt. Shasta California
Redding California

Other Resources

Conservation Organizations
  • American River Conservancy
  • American River Watershed Group
  • Disabled Adventure Outfitters' (DAO)-
  • Protect American River Canyons
  • Sierra Nevada Forest Protection Campaign
  • South Yuba River Citizens League
  • Pacific Coast Kayak Clubs
  • California Floaters Society
  • California Kayak Friends
  • Hydraulic Hooligans
  • River City Whitewater Club
  • Sequoia Paddling Club
  • Shasta Paddlers
  • Sierra Club San Francisco Bay RTS
  • Stanford Kayak Club
  • Western Waters Canoe Club
  • Paddling Sites
  • California Whitewater Rafting
  • Dreamflows
  • Travel Guides
  • California Vacation & Travel Guide