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South Yuba River State Park

Northern Sacramento Valley, California

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South Yuba River State Park

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  • Historic Bridgeport Covered Bridge from the Point Defiance Loop Trail.- South Yuba River State Park
  • Yuba River. The South Yuba River flows into the Yuba just downstream.- South Yuba River State Park
  • Beautiful fall foliage along the Point Defiance Loop Trail.- South Yuba River State Park
  • A mixture of grey pine (Pinus sabiniana), black oak (Quercus kelloggii) and interior live oak (Quercus wislizeni) cover this Yuba River Canyon slope.- South Yuba River State Park
  • South Yuba River near Bridgeport Crossing.- South Yuba River State Park
  • The Barn at the South Yuba River State Park Visitor Center.- South Yuba River State Park
  • Swimming hole at Highway 49 Crossing.- South Yuba River State Park
  • House-sized granite boulders line much of the South Yuba River canyon.- South Yuba River State Park
  • The South Yuba River downstream from Highway 49 Crossing.- South Yuba River State Park
  • South Yuba River as seen from the Independence Trail. - South Yuba River State Park
  • What was once a flume is now a section of elevated trail along the Independence Trail.- South Yuba River State Park
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
River access. Swimming holes. Fall colors.
Cons: 
Can get crowded on summer weekends.
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Region:
Northern Sacramento Valley, CA
Congestion: 
High
Pets allowed: 
Yes
Parking Pass: 
State Park Fee
Preferable Season(s):
Spring, Summer, Fall
Current Local Weather:
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Team

South Yuba River State Park in the heart of California's Gold Country is made up of a patchwork of fragmented park lands running throughout the South Yuba River Canyon. A handful of public access points provide visitors access to riverside hiking trails, swimming holes, picnic areas, kayaking/rafting put-ins, scenic overlooks, historic covered bridges, and information on the rich history of the gold rush that took place here. The four main access points running west to east are Bridgeport Crossing, Highway 49 Crossing, Purdon Crossing and Edwards Crossing.

Hot and dry in summers, South Yuba River State Park beckons those looking to escape the summer heat to its many emerald-colored pools. Sections of the river canyon are lined with large granite boulders that form picture-perfect swimming holes surrounded by rock perches perfect for wasting a few summer hours away. Highway 49 Crossing has a fantastic swimming hole. Take note that swimming here can be risky in late spring and early summer months when river flow can be  powerful and cold; park officials recommend waiting until midsummer to swim throughout the park.

When the season turns to fall, the area becomes cools down, and is a great time for hiking in the park. The weather makes the trails pleasant, and visitors have hiking options ranging from easy to strenuous. Scenic hiking trails include the Point Defiance Loop Trail, the Independence Trail and the South Yuba Trail. Fall foliage puts on a scenic autumn display throughout the river canyon. Wildflowers are magnificent in the spring and offer another good reason to visit.

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Field Guide + Map

Field Guide + Map

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(1 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(19 within a 30 mile radius)

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