Below you will discover a variety of options to enhance your trip experience with Mother Lode River Center. These options are available to mix and match as you choose. For example, if your group has booked a Challenge Ropes Course adventure, but you’ve decided that you would also like to experience some California whitewater rafting, you are welcome to add a rafting trip to your total package. Or, perhaps you’d like to finish off your rafting trip with a massage! Read on for a list of additional features available to enhance your trip.

Add Rafting

For a truly inspiring educational experience, consider adding a whitewater-rafting trip to your outdoor education program! Exploring the river canyon by raft, students will encounter the geology, hydrology, flora and fauna of the river in unparalleled ways. Gliding effortlessly through steep granite canyon walls sculpted by the river, witnessing a Blue Heron taking flight, spying a reclusive river otter; these are experiences that make river rafting unique beyond the fun and excitement of whitewater rapids.

Consider also the advantage of Mother Lode’s unique approach to river running. As a company whose purpose is river education, we view each river trip as an opportunity to share our love of rivers with you. Guides view their crews as participants, not mere passengers. Students take a hands-on role in preparing the rafts for the river and are encouraged to learn the art of guiding a raft. Above all, we emphasize the skills and knowledge necessary to enjoy a safe boating experience.

We offer a variety of rafting options to meet your level of experience, desired challenge and the age range of your students. These programs vary from easy floats, which avoid serious whitewater rapids altogether (Class II), to rollicking Class III adventures suitable for older children and adults.

Rafting can be combined with half-day, full day or multi-day Outdoor Education Programs. For example, you may add a half-day of Rafting to any half-day outdoor education program. River Study and river rafting make one of many great combinations. Multi-day programs that combine Rafting with Outdoor Education and Ropes Challenge Course Programs are particularly popular.

  • Class II on the South Fork of the American (minimum age 5): an easy float on a four-mile stretch of river.
  • Class III on the South Fork of the American (minimum age 8):The Gorge This is a bit more challenging of a section than the Class II, but is still safe and very exciting. This ten-mile adventure starts off at our camp with milder rapids and builds to almost continuous Class III whitewater through the Gorge. The slower start is a bit easier for novice rafters to get comfortable with before entering the Gorge Canyon. You’ll see why the South Fork is one of  the most popular river stretches in the country with rapids like “Fowler’s Rock”, “The Haystack Canyons”, “Satan’s Cesspool” and “Hospital Bar.” There are well over a dozen big rapids that will soak and thrill you. The Gorge has a remote feeling with little development along the river. This is typically an afternoon run, but can be done earlier on weekends.
  • For more information about our rafting offerings visit our Rafting Homepage.

Add Meals

Great food is also a longstanding MaLode tradition, and it is easy to appreciate that each guide is an accomplished cook. From the aroma of fresh brewed coffee in the morning, to mouth-watering meals prepared from ingredients that are always fresh, beautifully presented and often include organically grown vegetables from our organic garden, eating well is guaranteed at Mother Lode.

Breakfast – $10: Pancake breakfast with eggs, sausage, fresh fruit and, of course, coffee!

Lunch – $15: Deli style lunch with fresh fruit, cookies and assorted snacks.

Dinner – $25: Classic BBQ dinner served with sautéed vegetables, potatoes and dessert.

*Meal offerings are based on product and staff availability. 

Add Massage

Treat yourself to a relaxing massage after a rigorous day of paddling or a challenge course program.

  • Swedish massage
  • Deep tissue massage
  • On-site chair massage

Days, evenings, weekends. Schedule your massage when you make your reservation with us. The only way to end a wonderful weekend!

Equine Therapy

The Mother Lode River Center is happy to announce our collaboration with Equine Connections.

Using common, and not-so-common tools, Equine Connections facilitates beneficial and sustainable change in the way you work, communicate, and live.

Personal insight and conflict resolution skills are facilitated through interaction with horses. Working with horses creates a higher state of awareness of the 90% of non-verbal communication. The excercises are developed to promote skills in leadership, teamwork and creative thinking.

Perfect for corporate groups, school groups, families and even couples, the programs offered at Equine Connections are a wonderful accent to any of the programs offered here at Mother Lode River Center.

Stop by their website at and check them out!

Host your event with us!

As an extra special opportunity to our guests, we would be happy to host any of the following special events for your large group or Corporation. Request an “add on” when making your rafting reservation.

Birthday Parties ·  Company Retreats  ·  Class Field Trips  ·  Family Reunions Graduation Trips  ·  Bachelor(ette) Parties  ·  Acoustic Musical Performances Birdwatching Tours  ·  Film Festivals  ·  Vacation Home Stays

What is your special event?  Present your ideas, we’d love to hear them!

Other attractions while you’re in the area…

Hike and bike along the American River!

The opening of the American River Trail a little over a year ago has provided great access for multisport fun on the South Fork American River with over 25 miles of trails to explore from Greenwood Creek to Salmon Falls.