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AW in the Lower Pacific

American Whitewater’s conservation program focuses on dam relicensing and continued protection of key watersheds on public land. American Whitewater is a founding member and current Steering Committee member of the California Hydropower Reform Coalition. American Whitewater has participated in the relicensing of 22 hydro projects throughout the state. Our goals are to secure annually scheduled whitewater releases, access improvements, real time flow information and improved instream flows for river ecological purposes.

Many of the California and Southern Oregon Rivers are in Dick Schwind's California Guidebook

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California Rivers Through Native Eyes

02/10/2022 - by Theresa Lorejo- Simsiman

Reciprocity is the touchstone of the stewardship work we do here at American Whitewater.  We never paddle solo when we enter a process to negotiate new hydropower licenses, defend river access, or speak out against detrimental dam proposals. We actively seek collaboration with individuals and groups mutually sharing our time, expertise, and resources for the protection of the watersheds we hold dear. Often these key partners include Native Communities who bring to the table the traditional knowledge of the lands and waters they have stewarded for time immemorial. To date however, there is scant Native information to be found in our National Whitewater Inventory of over 5,500 rivers. In the spirit of reciprocity, American Whitewater is offering our river database as a platform to share the Indigenous narratives of the rivers we enjoy. In California, we have partnered with the Redbud Resource Group to research, interview and chronicle stories of Native Communities. Redbud is a Native led 501c3 non-profit focused on improving education and public health outcomes for Native communities. For our first California River Through Native Eyes, we start with the North Fork Feather River from the Rock Creek Reach down through the Poe, homeland of the Konkow Valley Tribe of Maidu. You can read their story online and in our most recent Winter 2022 American Whitewater Journal. 

Photo of Doctor Charlie Gramps Provided by Matthew (Gramps) Williford Sr.


CA State Water Board Orders More Water For Butte Creek

08/18/2016 - by Dave Steindorf

The California State Water Resources Control Board has ordered the decommissioning of the Centerville Powerhouse on Butte Creek to protect spring run salmon. This is part of a relicensing agreement that American Whitewater has been working on since 2003. As a result, Butte Creek, located in Northern California will be receiving more water.

New Gauges On The Kern River

12/01/2015 - by Dave Steindorf

After 3 years of discussion and negotiation with Southern California Edison and the US Forest Service the Kern River has several new online flow gauges on the Upper Kern River.  These gauges will replace the cumbersome and antiquated flow phone that was part of the Kern River #3 license.

Improved Flows on the Yuba - One Step Closer (CA)

12/29/2014 - by Dave Steindorf

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has issued the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the Yuba/Bear and Drum Spaulding projects in Northern California.  Our review of this 1000 page documents says that it spells good things for boaters.


AW Calls for Public Hearing - River Access & Bridges in CA

07/09/2012 - by Megan Hooker

Under utilized provisions of the California Streets and Highway Code require that an Access Feasibility Study be conducted when a new bridge is built, and American Whitewater wants to make sure they are completed. Today, American Whitewater requested a public hearing regarding the Access Feasibility Study that was done for the SR 99 Bridge over the Feather River conducted by Caltrans. This is a good opportunity for California residents to get involved and improve river access - not just on the Feather, but on any new bridge project in your area!

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DWR Releases Oroville Whitewater Park Feasibility Study (CA)

02/02/2010 - by Dave Steindorf

The California Department of Water Resources (DWR) has released the whitewater park feasibility study on the Feather River in Oroville California. Download the report and attend the meeting on February 4th in Oroville.



Associated Projects

Clean Water Act

American Whitewater's advocacy to protect water quality.

Conservation System

The National Landscape Conservation System represents the crown jewels of BLM lands and rivers.

Feather River (CA)

AW's work to restore the Feather River

Kern River (CA)

American Whitewater's history on the Kern River.

Klamath Restoration (OR & CA)

American Whitewater supports restoration of the Klamath River for the benefit of salmon while providing appropriate opportunities for whitewater recreation.

McCloud (CA)

American Whitewater has been involved with the FERC relicensing process for the McCloud River below McCloud Dam since 2006.

Merced Wild and Scenic River

American Whitewater's advocacy to maintain the boundary of the Merced Wild and Scenic Merced River.

Mokelumne (CA)

AW negotiated releases, access, and other previsions on the Mokelumne through a dam relicensing process.

Pit River (CA)

AW's restoration of the Pit River.

San Joaquin (CA)

The "Big Creek" dam relicensing on the San Joaquin River is one of AW's landmark river restoration successes in California

San Joaquin River Gorge Protection

American Whitewater is working to protect the San Joaquin River Gorge and preserve and its free-flowing nature.

Smith River (CA/OR)

The Smith River is known for exceptional water quality and is free flowing from the headwaters to the ocean.

Yosemite Whitewater (CA)

AW advocates for opportunities to enjoy the unique and spectacular rivers of Yosemite National Park.

Yuba and Bear Rivers (CA)

The Yuba and Bear rivers are some of the best whitewater resources in California. American Whitewater is an active participant in the FERC relicensing negotiations that impact these rivers.

Associated Rivers


West Coast River Touring (4/1/1974)

A whitewater guidebook to the Pacific Coast of the United States from the Rogue River to the Salinas Valley in California.

Upcoming Events

Calendar Control Date:
Calendar by Date by Title

October 2024

CA, Pit 1 Releases
08:00 am -6:00 pm america/los_angeles
Actual flow can vary depending on inflow - at least 900 cfs

CA, Pit 1 Releases
08:00 am -6:00 pm america/los_angeles
Actual flow can vary depending on inflow - at least 900 cfs

CA, Pit 1 Releases
08:00 am -6:00 pm america/los_angeles
Actual flow can vary depending on inflow - at least 900 cfs

CA, Pit 1 Releases
08:00 am -6:00 pm america/los_angeles
Actual flow can vary depending on inflow - at least 900 cfs

CA, Pit 1 Releases
08:00 am -6:00 pm america/los_angeles
Actual flow can vary depending on inflow - at least 900 cfs

CA, Pit 1 Releases
08:00 am -6:00 pm america/los_angeles
Actual flow can vary depending on inflow - at least 900 cfs


CA, Mokelumne, NF, Tiger Creek Releases Pioneer,CA runs 05/28/16 - 06/29/24
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CA, Fordyce Creek Releases Cisco Grove,CA runs 08/28/08 - 10/01/23
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CA, Canyon Creek Releases Nevada City,CA runs 09/05/08 - 09/20/20
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CA, Feather, NF, Poe Releases Chico,CA runs 11/11/09 - 11/26/23
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CA, Feather, NF, Rock Creek Releases Quincy,CA runs 08/25/07 - 09/24/23
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CA, Pit 1 Releases Fall River Mills,CA runs 08/19/06 - 10/13/24, next 10/04/24
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CA, Feather, SF, Releases Oroville,CA runs 10/02/08 - 10/08/23
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CA, Feather, NF, Rock Creek Releases Belden,CA runs 07/23/05 - 09/29/24, next 07/27/24
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CA, San Joaquin: Horseshoe Bend Releases Fresno,CA runs 08/18/13 - 05/22/22
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CA, Pit 5 Releases Burney,CA runs 09/06/14 - 09/08/24, next 08/03/24
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CA, Silver Creek, SF, Icehouse Releases Placerville,CA runs 06/09/17 - 06/30/24
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CA, American, SF, below Slab Creek Reservoir Placerville,CA runs 04/29/17 - 04/28/24
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CA, Piru Creek, lower Piru,CA runs 06/29/17 - 07/13/17
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CA, American NF - Confluence with MF American Auburn,CA runs 05/28/22 - 09/17/22
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CA, Mokelumne, NF, Electra Jackson,CA runs 05/20/23 - 07/27/24, next 07/27/24
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CA, Mokelumne, NF Devil's Nose Jackson,CA runs 05/13/23 - 05/05/24
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CA, Pit 1 Boatable Flows Expected Fall River Mills,CA runs 10/03/23 - 10/31/23
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CA, Pit 1 Boatable Flows Expected Fall River Mills,CA runs 10/03/23 - 10/31/23
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