Orange Blossom to Oakdale

Below Orange Blossom Park, commercial rafting is less common, although the river continues at a stable (and raftable) flow to the confluence of the San Joaquin River. The section of river from Orange Blossom to Oakdale Recreation area is especially friendly for rafting, as it winds through a beautiful section of river that has multiple access points for picnics, parking, and relaxing at.

The start of this section is Orange Blossom Park, which is a great place to unwind and explore before your trip begins. Only a few hundred yards into the trip, the Stanislaus River narrows slightly and the trip becomes a voyage through the beautiful oaks and other riparian flora of the Stanislaus River. The rafters and kayakers that travel this section often notice this section of river is more peaceful and unpopulated than some of the more impacted sections of river. The Orange Blossom section is perfect for families, those looking to relax, and for the weekender looking for a way to avoid the always-popular (and sometimes chaotic) Knights Ferry to Orange Blossom run of river.

A couple of miles into this run is Oak Valley Recreation Area and campground, a Stanislaus River park area that is accessible to river patrons. Camping here is highly recommended, as it is one of the more secluded camps on the Stanislaus (reservations can be made through the Army Corps.) Keep a look out for the camp, as it is easy to miss; a lone Army Corps sign on the right hand shore marks the location of the park. Also keep in mind that on this section of river, like much of the Stanislaus, almost all of the property bordering the river is private, so please respect the local landowners!

One mile upstream of the takeout is the highway 120 bridge, which is a good marker that your trip is about 45 minutes from being over. The river continues to peaceful meander past Oakdale Recreation Area, which runs almost a mile along the Stanislaus River. Commercial trips take out near the end of the park when the river widens and slows down to a crawl, and private boaters can take out nearly anywhere in the park. Oakdale Recreation Area can be reached by taking River Road west off of Highway 120, and then taking a left on Liberini Ave (toward the dog shelter). Shuttles are available by request on weekends at (phone number).

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