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Foothill Conservancy raft trips treat locals to the river in our own backyard
O.A.R.S. trip on the Mokelumne River, July 2017
On Sunday, July 16, and Sunday, July 23, nearly 100 happy rafters enjoyed a special raft trip on the Mokelumne River’s Electra-Middle Bar Run between Jackson and Mokelumne Hill. O.A.R.S. of Angels Camp, a locally owned-and-operated worldwide outfitter, provided professional guides, fully equipped rafts and transportation for the trips. Proceeds from the raft trips benefit the Foothill Conservancy’s efforts to protect, restore and sustain the Mokelumne River.

This year, 85 percent of the rafters were Amador and Calaveras county residents.

“We love getting people out on the river,” said Conservancy Executive Director Amanda C. Nelson. “While you can enjoy the Mokelumne from its beaches and banks, floating down the river gives people an entirely new perspective. This was the first time I’d ever been whitewater rafting, and I had a marvelous time. It’s great fun!”

Since regular commercial rafting is not yet allowed on the river, the trips were held under special use permits from the Bureau of Land Management.

“We run river and other adventure trips all over the world,” said Clavey Wendt, Conservancy director and O.A.R.S. vice-president for community development. “But there’s really nothing more fun than taking people rafting on our home river. The Mokelumne is a beautiful river that truly deserves permanent protection as a designated Wild and Scenic River.”

We would like to thank our rafting guests; O.A.R.S.; Raley’s, which provided staging for the trips in its parking lot; and PG&E and American Whitewater, which provided flow data in the days leading up to the trips. Since flows were high on the river much later than usual this year, accurate flow predictions were especially important for ensuring the trips were carried out under safe conditions.

“We sold these trips out in advance,” Nelson said. “Even then, people were calling us and dropping by our registration tent both Sundays asking if they could join a trip. There’s clearly demand for this kind of recreation locally, and we’re happy to promote continued river access and river recreation for locals and visitors, alike. We hope we can run trips again next summer.”

THE FOOTHILL CONSERVANCY  |  PO Box 1255, Pine Grove CA 95665 | 209.295.4900

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