One of the favorite California rafting spots for the expert rafter is the famed Class V+ Cherry Creek. This is considered, by some, to be the most challenging commercial whitewater rafting trip in America. Each summer, expert outfitters gear up for the anticipated annual Class V run. Cherry Creek begins in an isolated area of the upper Tuolumne River, which is just a stones throw from Yosemite National Park. There is an abundance of natural beauty along the way, such as waterfalls and wildlife. However, with the plethora of rapids, rafters rarely get a chance to notice the scenery. They are more likely to be focusing on seemingly non-stop whitewater during their trip down the intense Cherry Creek.
Class IV and V rafting on the Cherry Creek require experience and good fitness
This is major, serious whitewater rafting. Even the most expert outfitter will review the necessary qualifications before attempting to run this stretch. He will ask himself, "Do I have the right team, the right gear and the right amount of experience." The Cherry Creek Run itself extends for about 8 1/2 miles. The Creek is filled with boulders, complicated holes, congested and steep, staircase chutes. The rapids may continue for long stretches, which requires excellent physical fitness and stamina.
Cherry Creek Whitewater Rafting is non-stop, whitewater action
Flowing through a canyon in the high Sierras and lush forests, Cherry Creek begins with a couple of miles of Class IV rapids to afford you the opportunity to warm up for the upcoming Class V rapids. Then the real action begins as you are throttled down the first Class V of the day, followed by the long and complex (V+) Mushroom Rapid. This is also the site of many tamed egos. The next stretch is the infamous Miracle Mile, which contains Blind Faith, Smokey's Hole, Eulogy and Gar's Launch.
Scenic, Wild and Wonderful Canyon Along California's Cherry Creek
The Cherry Creek area has a rich abundance of evergreen trees and wildlife. There is excellent fishing of both brown and rainbow trout. If you are fortunate enough, you might even spot chipmunks, raccoons or a bobcat. The whole experience is a combination of exhilaration and serenity.
The put- in is located at just below the Holm powerhouse. The take- out will be found at the campsite below the Lumsden Falls Bridge. The rafting season is summer and depends on water levels released from the hydropower dam. The California outfitters which offer whitewater rafting trips on the famed Cherry Creek require that you pass a swimming test and have prior Class IV whitewater experience.
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