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California Rivers

Tuolumne River

HOW TO GET THERE | VISITOR INFORMATION  

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View our Photo Album from our annual River Camp - Tuolumne River - Expedition. Click here.

South Fork Tuolumne River Locator Map

South Fork

The South Fork Tuolumne River flows from Yosemite National Park into the Sierra National Forest. After meeting Highway 120, the river drops more than 3,800 feet through a short but spectacular canyon. Here, the river forms a series of pools, rapids, cascades, and waterfalls, eventually to meet the Tuolumne Wild & Scenic River.

Although much of the truly wild canyon of the South Fork is inaccessible, the upstream and downstream segments offer outstanding recreation. Rainbow Pool, just upstream of Highway 120 is a popular picnic and swimming area for day use visitors and the City of Berkeley Family Camp located upstream. The pool was also the location of an historic stagecoach stop and former resort.

At the confluence of the Tuolumne and South Fork are the popular Lumsden and South Fork campgrounds, which are accessed via the visually bracing and not-for-the-driving-challenged Lumsden Road. This area is also the put-in for the Tuolumne’s world famous class IV whitewater run.

The Rim of World Vista on Highway 120 provides outstanding views of the South Fork’s precipitous drop all the way down to the main stem of the Tuolumne.

The California Wild Heritage Act proposes to add 3.2 miles of the South Fork Tuolumne River to the National Wild & Scenic Rivers System.

How To Get There
From the town of Groveland, drive east on Highway 120 to the Rim of the World Vista point. To visit the popular Rainbow Pool picnic and swimming area, proceed another mile eastward to where the highway crosses the South Fork.

Recreation And Visitor Information
For additional recreational information, contact the Forest Service’s Groveland Ranger Station at (209) 962-7825.

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