Canoe Trip Suggestions 2

I do most of my canoeing in southern California, usually in Big Bear Lake or near my home in the Newport Back Bay. I am not a beginner but in no way an expert. I have never ventured out to run a river but have got the bug to try it. I have a buddy who will go with me, both of us water people, surf, snorkel, swim, etc… but need to know of a good river to try for our first time. I have a Discovery 164 and it is semi-outfitted (nose and stern float bags with D-rings and lash points) but not tricked out.

So, with that, what is a good spot to run Class I and/or II water? I have no problem with simply moving water with mild stuff if that’s the way I should start. Looking on this website, the San Joaquin River seemed like a good one but I would like your opinions. I am in Orange County CA so something not too far would be great but a 5 or 6 hour dive is ok. Also, if you know of places where I can leave my car and get my boat to the start/finish spot to pick it up would be helpful. We are interested in at least an over night trip if not a 3 day would be better.

Thanks in advance for the suggestions, i appreciate your help!

I have no clue about your part of the country, so I will not comment on specific rivers. However, you will have to do one of 3 things for a 1 car trip.

1 go to a lake

2 paddle up river and float back down.

3 get a shuttle

For the shuttle, if you can not find a paddling partner, you should call a livery on whatever river you want to paddle. They will probably be able to work put the trip you want.

Try the Mokelumne River
If you contact Dan at Headwaters in Lodi he’ll fill you in on the kind of water you’re looking for on the Mokelumne and other paddling opportunities in the area.

I’m thinking of the Lower Mokelumne between The Fish Hatchery just below Lake Camanche and Stillman Park on Mackville Road but you can paddle the Mokelumne from Camanche to the Delta. The Cosumnes River Preserve is along the Mokelumne and is worth checking out.

I often paddle Mokelumne in my canoe and I have similar paddling skills to those you describe.

Good luck.