||Anderson River Park to Ide Adobe Park
||class I (some II) big water
||11.4 or 35.8 miles, 1 or 2 days
||rafts and kayaks 5000 - 20000 cfs or higher
||measured at Bend Bridge
||3.5 fpm average
||Anderson river park near gravel pits, 420'
||William B. Ide Adobe State Historical Park, 294'
||22 miles (20 minutes) one-way
||Delorme Atlas, AAA Northern California,
||year round, from dam release
||© 1998, 2002 Bill Tuthill,
thanks to Jim Ham
This semi-remote section of the Sacramento between Redding and Red Bluff
could hardly be described as a creek,
but it makes an interesting float that can help you decide
whether you like big water or not.
Although most of this section is moving water without whitecaps (class I),
eddy lines and whirlpools can make things exciting at times.
With so much water in the river, boats move quickly downstream.
There are a few class II rapids here and there.
If you have just one day, the section from Bend to Red Bluff
is recommended for its scenery and excitement.
Although much of the time you float past suburban backyards,
camping is allowed in many places, sometimes on both sides of the river.
A Sheriff travels up and downriver in a jetboat, so help is never far away.
At low flows, which seem high for creek boaters, there are many beaches.
The water temperature is cold even after warm weather.
Because summer temperatures are generally hot,
this run is best in autumn, or late winter when the grass is green.
Fishing can be good;
trout fishing is better upstream because of colder water,
and (hatchery) salmon fishing is better downstream, allowed only in season.
You can put in as far upstream as Redding diversion dam near the
highway 273 bridge in downtown Redding, for about 15 more river miles
(at the gravel pits below Redding, the easy run is right of the islands).
Below the Red Bluff diversion dam, there is another ~ 25 mile class I run;
take out at a riverside fisherman's bar on the east bank near Hamilton City.
Reports from long-distance sea kayakers indicate that
the Sacramento River is very scenic all the way to Colusa.
- Boat access at Anderson river park, near gravel pits. Just downstream
are many channels and islands; most of the water goes left.
- Deschutes Road crosses on a bridge overhead. Until near Balls Ferry,
the river flows thru a developed area with many houses.
- Below an island, Cow Creek enters on the left.
- High-tension powerline crosses overhead; China Gardens on the left.
- Bear Creek enters on the left.
- Ash Creek enters on the left.
- Large salmon holding area.
- Balls Ferry at highway A17 bridge with river access just downstream
on the left. Jet boaters appear at times. Good alternate put-in,
because after this point the river seems more remote.
- Class II- rapid, easiest on the left (2002).
- Gover Road boat access on the left. Alternate put-in.
- Anderson Creek enters on the right.
- Cottonwood Creek, a river at times, enters on the right, marking
the Shasta-Tehama county line.
- Class II rapid, relatively new, enter right of center (2002).
- Battle Creek enters on the left. Public land just downstream on the
left bank, called Bloody Island although it isn't really an island.
- Public land on the left bank, then both banks, continuing on the left
for more than a mile. The river bends right (west) and passes
Wildcat Point, Juniper Point, then Round Mountain.
- Jellys Ferry Road bridge. Public land on the left, with river access.
Over the next few miles, the river bends gradually north.
- Inks Creek enters on the left at the northernmost point of the bend.
Tadpole haven, in season.
The left bank is public land for many miles, until houses of Bend.
- After a left bend, a nice campsite appears on the left bank, with
low-water beach, high-water bench, and outhouse in the oak woods.
This is called Massacre Flat, probably due to some Indian battle.
The river bends east, south, and west around Table Mountain.
- Table Mountain Lake outlet enters on the right.
- Bend Ferry Road bridge, with boat access downstream on the left.
Recommended put-in for one day trips. Gaging station nearby,
source of BND flow numbers.
- Southernmost point of big bend on which Bend is located. Public
land on right bank starts in less than a mile.
- China Rapids begins, class II. Above 8000 cfs, this rapid consists
of waves with few rocks. Bedrock formations begin to appear at
flows under 8000 cfs, often causing trouble for drunken jetboaters.
Alert kayakers should have no problem maneuvering around these rocks,
which are visible from above. Wear your lifejacket at all times,
especially on large rivers, and most importantly in rapids.
- “A buddy [floated this section] in canoes with an inexperienced
no-PFD-needed sort of group. They capsized at an eddy line
and nearly drowned due to wearing heavy jackets and assorted
late-fall outfits. Other than that he said the trip was uneventful
but pretty. The near death experience happened at China Rapid,
which I believe is a long class II.”
- End of China Rapids. Public land on both sides. Pleasant camping
with mixed sun and shade is afforded by several spots on the left.
Campsites on the right bank are generally shaded by Bald Hill.
- Paynes Creek enters on the left, marking the start of Iron Canyon,
a lava flow thru which the river has carved a channel. Remote but
steep campsites are available in this canyon.
- Lava tube on river right, worth a stop. Bald Hill on the right.
- River turns sharp right and heads south by southeast.
- Gaging station on left. Suburbs begin; no more wilderness.
- Take out at Ide Adobe State Park on the right bank.
- 37 ?
- Hazard! Red Bluff diversion dam is not navigable (seasonal,
summer and fall only).
To reach take-out, exit I-5 at Red Bluff and take Adobe Road east
(north of the river crossing).
Ide Adobe State Park is about a mile from the freeway.
To reach put-in from there, continue east on Adobe Road
to the intersection with Jellys Ferry road, and turn north.
This leads into a freeway entrance.
Continue north to Anderson, and exit I-5 on North Street.
Follow North Street straight down to the river access.
The alternate put-in at Ball's Ferry is reached thru the town of Cottonwood,
where Fourth Street reaches an intersection with Ball's Ferry road.
Oddly enough, to reach Ball's Ferry you leave this road,
bearing right onto Ash Creek road.
Map of Rivers