Tunnel Run (Ralston Powerhouse To Greenwood)


For those without the skill or equipment to run this on their own, this could be one of the best commercial trips in CA.  This area is not nearly as crowded as the South Fork but still offers year round boating due to dam controlled flows coming out of the Oxbow reservoir.

Suggested river levels for paddling this section of the American River, Middle Fork are between a bare minimum of 700cfs and a high of 3,000cfs. River conditions sourced from USGS 11427000, the Nf American R A North Fork Dam Ca Remember only watercraft are permitted at Tunnel Run (Ralston Powerhouse to Greenwood).

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Whitewater Rapids

Obstacles on the river run
Panic Alley Rapid
Class III
Last Chance Rapid
Class III
Tunnel Chute
Class IV+
Kanaka Falls (Cartwheel Rapid)
Class IV
Upper Ruck-A-Chucky (Chunder) Rapid
Class IV- to IV
Ruck-A-Chucky
Class V+ to VI
Lower Ruck-A-Chucky
Class III+ to IV
Driver's Ed Rapid
Class III to IV
Catapult Rapid
Class III to IV-
Shareen's Dream Rapid
Class III+

Area Hydrology

Gauge Streamflow Stage
Laguna C Nr Elk Grove Ca
USGS 11336585
1 cfs 2.2 ft
N Yuba R Bl Goodyears Bar Ca
USGS 11413000
514 cfs 3.5 ft
Prosser C Bl Prosser C Dam Nr Truckee Ca
USGS 10340500
61 cfs 1.7 ft
Sagehen C Nr Truckee Ca
USGS 10343500
3 cfs 1.6 ft
Truckee R A Tahoe City Ca
USGS 10337500
50 cfs 2.1 ft
Independence C Nr Truckee Ca
USGS 10343000
27 cfs 3.4 ft
Dry C A Vernon St Bridge A Roseville Ca
USGS 11447293
159 cfs 10.3 ft
Unnamed Trib Bl Gavin Mandry Dr Nr Marysville Ca
USGS 11424546
8 cfs 1.1 ft
Blackwood C Nr Tahoe City Ca
USGS 10336660
12 cfs 8.2 ft
Ward C At Hwy 89 Nr Tahoe Pines Ca
USGS 10336676
8 cfs 5.6 ft
Snotel Site Snowpack 24hr Change
Independence Lake
SNOTEL 541
88" 0"
Rubicon #2
SNOTEL 724
50" 0"
blue canyon
SNOTEL BLU
47" 0"
alpine meadows-base
SNOTEL AMBC1
57.4" -1.06"
Squaw Valley G.C.
SNOTEL 784
51" -1"
tahoma .5 s, ca
SNOTEL CA-ED-9
32.7" 2.11"
Css Lab
SNOTEL 428
71" -1"
soda springs 1.5 ssw, ca
SNOTEL CA-PC-1
66.94" 2.1"
Independence Creek
SNOTEL 540
31" 0"
Tahoe City Cross
SNOTEL 809
33" 0"
Ward Creek #3
SNOTEL 848
61" -1"
Truckee #2
SNOTEL 834
43" 0"
black springs
SNOTEL BLSC1
54.58" -0.09"
blue canyon alert
SNOTEL BLUC1
46.39" -1.04"
alpha
SNOTEL ALPHA_MADIS
45.38" 2.79"
Independence Camp
SNOTEL 539
53" 0"

Outdoor Recreation

Campground Campsites Reservations Toilets Showers Elevation
Giant Gap 35 3,686 ft
Finnon Lake 14 2,427 ft
Big Reservoir 19 4,161 ft
Shirttail 30 3,943 ft
Dru Barner 47 3,237 ft
Ponderosa Cove 18 4,293 ft
Ski Area Snowpack Air Temperature 5 Day Forecast
River Run Streamflow Length Class
Generation and Giant Gaps (Tadpole to Colfax-Iowa Hill Road) 614.0cfs 26.8 Mi IV to IV+
Yankee Jim Road to Ponderosa Way (Shirttail) 614.0cfs 5.0 Mi II to III
Coloma to Greenwood - (C to G) 614.0cfs 5.0 Mi II to III-
Chili Bar 614.0cfs 8.0 Mi III to IV
Tunnel Run (Ralston Powerhouse to Greenwood) 614.0cfs 16.5 Mi IV- to IV
Greenwood to Mammoth Bar 614.0cfs 7.0 Mi II to II+