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“Great White Water Fun, Great Company”

Mariah Wilderness Expeditions - Rafting Day Trips
Ranked #5 of 17 things to do in Lotus
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: We are a whitewater rafting company specializing in corporate, family, group, and youth rafting trips. Let our whitewater rafting experience and knowledge work for you. We offer a wide variety of daily rafting trips on the American River in the scenic Gold County of California from April through September. These river trips are suitable for rafting adventurers of all ages and abilities where you will experience Class II-IV rapids.Rafting vacation packages include:Family Rafting Vacations Gold panning Vacations Raft Express for Children - great trips for kids and families!Group Rafting Trips Couples Rafting Trips Inflatable Kayak Trips Wine Touring & Rafting Youth Group Rafting Rafting & Wine Tasting Music & Whitewater Rafting First Time Rafters Camping & Rafting Rafting locations include South Fork American River, North Fork American River, Middle Fork American River, American River Combo Trips, Merced River, Tuolumne River, and Kings River.
Davis, CA
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Great White Water Fun, Great Company”
Reviewed August 23, 2012

Rafted the Middle Fork of the American River with 11 friends and we had the time of our lives. This is some serious white water and it is not a run for the timid. Great people at Mariah. From reservations to riding the rapids, this company is a class act. As for Guides? Michele, Eric and Keven are really good. They keep you safe and they make your trips fun filled. I highly recommend this company!

Visited August 2012
Thank HattieBelle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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50 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
San Jose, California
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“It's fun activity if you happened to be in Sacramento”
Reviewed August 19, 2012

There are a lot of rafting company in this area, I consider Mariah is the good one. The reservation staff , Melinda, is exceptionally nice and organized. The field staffs & guides are equally friendly, but the life jackets need to be replaced, or may be just need to be cleaned/washed once in a while???
We bought 1 day Chili Bar South Fork (including lunch), starts at 9 am and ends at 1:30 pm.
The photos co. , works independently, charge a rather expensive price, $95/raft. But if all the people in the same group share ( 1 raft= 6 peoples) the cost , I think it's a better deal.
Helmet is provided. Never expect you won't be thrown into water accidentally, it happened to us. The water is cold even though it's in mid-August, so wear a polyester shirt. No flip flop! Wear your old tennis shoes or river sandal, or anything that secured to your feet nicely.
One more thing.... sunscreen folks!

Visited August 2012
Thank KatherineSJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Wine and Water - What else can I say?”
Reviewed July 30, 2012

Mariah has a really great 2 day package - wine tasting and rafting. Actually never new there were wineries in the El Dorado hills, most of the wineries were very small, but a couple of them had impossible views of the valley. Ok wine, but really beautiful area so made it that much better.

As for rafting, really great guides, extremely knowledgable and friendly. Great place for beginners to get their feet wet, literally and figuratively. Most of the rapids were 3's, and low 4's. Think partially due to a pretty dry year and very low water levels, but still a great day out on the water. I would definitely recommend for anyone looking for something out of the ordinary to do on a summer weekend.

Overall great experience and would definitely repeat.

Visited July 2012
Thank meyersb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chula Vista, California
Level 6 Contributor
162 reviews
106 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 206 helpful votes
“Fun day of rafting”
Reviewed July 16, 2012

My husband and I took the one day rafting trip on the south fork of the American River with Mariah Wilderness Expeditions. We booked our tour through Zephyr Whitewater Expeditions due to their stellar reviews on tripadvisor. We were a bit disappointed to find out that Zephyr has a sister company, Mariah, that runs the trips on the American River. Zephyr was helpful and provided us all the information needed for the trip. The directions to Mariah were easy and we had no problem finding the campground where the tour starts. Check-in was efficient and a brief safety talk was given. Helmets and life jackets were provided. By the time my husband and I were able to get helmets there weren't any left of his size. None of the employees seemed to care that he couldn't find a helmet his size. He had to use a smaller helmet than what was comfortable and it ended up giving him a headache throughout the trip. They quickly split everyone into groups except us. I had to ask which rafting group we were assigned to. Not a big deal, but when you're paying $100+/person to go rafting you shouldn't have to ask which raft you are assigned to. Our guide was friendly and knew the river well. The south fork of the American River is good for beginners. This was my first time rafting and I was able to stay in the raft the whole time. There were also 3 children in our raft that were able to hang on through all of the rapids. Lunch of chips, fruit, sandwiches, and cookies were provided half-way through the trip. It was a basic lunch since all of the food was carried in the rafts. At the end of the tour we took a bus back to Mariah. Pictures were taken throughout the rafting trip. My husband and I wanted to buy a CD of the pictures, but when we saw the price of $95 we decided not to. Only a fool would spend that much for a CD of a few pictures. We talked to the photographer and asked if he sells individual pictures. He stated "no" and that we could split the cost of the CD with the other people in our boat. Splitting the cost of a CD was not really an option for us since there were 3 kids in our raft. The CD would still be ridiculously expensive. We left disappointed since we didn't get any pictures. Overall, it was a fun day of rafting, but we probably won't use Mariah again.

Visited July 2012
Thank worldtraveller2801
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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