Whitewater rafting in Tahoe runs the gamut from mild to wild, allowing you to choose the right level of adventure for your family. For something tamer, rent tubes from Truckee River Rafting and float down the river between Tahoe City and River Ranch Lodge. If you’re up for a crazy ride, Tahoe Whitewater Tours and Tributary Whitewater Tours both offer guided trips on the fast-and-furious lower stretch of the Truckee River, which features Class II and III rapids.
Photo by age fotostock
Did you know you can raft down the Truckee River near Lake Tahoe, California?
Start in Tahoe City and ride the river to River Ranch Lodge, then sit on the hotel deck and have lunch. Since it’s more like floating than whitewater rafting, the journey is perfect for families with children of all ages.
During July and early August, you can navigate this gentle 4.5-mile stretch of the river in almost any kind of boat—including inner tubes. Sandy beaches offer spots to pull up and have a picnic, and the water is calm enough to jump in and swim.
Several companies in Tahoe City, such as Truckee River Raft Company, rent rafts and tubes and provide shuttle service at the end of the float; just be sure to show up early in the morning to avoid long lines. If you have your own floating device, you can start your ride at the free Public Ranch Launching Facility at 64 Acres Park.