Yuba, S. Fork - E) Purdon's Crossing to Route 49

Yuba, S. Fork, California, US


E) Purdon's Crossing to Route 49

Usual Difficulty V (for normal flows)
Length 4 Miles

Gauge Information

Name Range Difficulty Updated Level
cdec-JBR 600 - 2000 cfs V 01h37m 929 cfs (running)

River Description


Character: Mix of Bedrock and polished boulders. Long continuous rapids with multiple channels, big holes and sieves. Very few points of egress out of this canyon. That said, this is a world class run if you like class V+ river running. The first mile or so is warm up class IV. Then, its class V/.V+ all the way to the 49 bridge.  This run is a definite step or 2 up in difficulty and consequences from the Hwy 49 to Bridgeport run. It is similar in character to Cherry Creek (ending Merals pool) and Tobin on the NF Feather -- more Sieves and a little more continuous in places. 
Link this up with the section below, taking out at Bridgeport for one of the best ~12 miles of easily accessable whitewater in California!
Flow: 600 is a reasonable minimum level (locals would say 750). 750-900 is good -- padded with some push. >1000, the holes just keep getting bigger…>1400 -- pros only.    Easier at lower flows.
Winter: commonly runs from rain.  Spring/Summer: usually runs into June based on the snowpack. 
Hazards:  Serious sieves  and big holes throughout the run.   Strongly recommend you paddle w/ someone who knows this section of river or plan on a lot of scouting. 1) First portage is ~1.5 miles into the run after a long pool where the river bends sharply to the right. A deck is currently visible at river level and house sits high on the left bank. This rapid can be snuck thru a side channel on river left. 2) A broken dam about ½ way thru the run = Recirculating broken ledge hole. Sneek  left thru a side channel 3) River wide sieve ~1/2 mi to a mile below the dam (Not obvious). Portage/sneak left. 4) Sieve Rapid just upstream of hwy 49 pedestrian bridge. >95% of flow is sieved. Many swimming deaths have occurred here – Portage Left. ~Stay Safe!~

More Info:



StreamTeam Status: Not Verified
Last Updated: 2011-03-22 01:29:19

Rapid Descriptions

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