River Front Camping on the American River
The Premium River Front Camp Sites at Troublemaker Rapid on the American River
Welcome to the best riverfront campsites on the American River. Camping near a river is revitalizing! Flowing water will calm and re-energize you while the raw power of The American River reaches out to mesmerize and inspire you. You’ll find it a rare privilege to camp beside this natural wonder as it courses along our banks. Enjoy the peaceful and natural riparian environment when camping in one of our riverfront campsites.
The Resort is uniquely located along the river banks of the South Fork American River at the famous Troublemaker Rapid. During rafting season’s peak day-time hours, you will get a front-row seat to all the whitewater action. At night, you will fall asleep to the sound of the flowing water.
“I choose to listen to the river for a while, thinking river thoughts, before joining the night and the stars” – Edward Abbey
River Front and River View Sites and their Location
The River Front sites overlook Troublemaker rapid with fantastic views of the river and the whitewater action. Most of these sites are under shaded oak canopies. River access is a very short walk down multiple trails that take you to various vantage points along the river. The River Front sites are numbered 14/15/16/22/23/24/29, as indicated on the campground site map.
The Direct Access River Front sites are located upstream from Troublemaker Rapid at river level allowing river access directly from your site. These Direct Access River Front sites are numbered 31/32/33/34, as indicated on the campground site map.
River View sites are nestled below or perched above the riverfront sites in front of Troublemaker Rapid. These sites have various viewpoints of the river. The River View sites are numbered 1/2/3/4/5/6/11/12/13/18/20/21/25/27/28, as indicated on the campground site map.
River View and Mountain View – What’s the difference?
The main differences between River View and Mountain View campsites are the proximity of the campsites to the river, the views from each campsite, and the vehicle parking locations. All River View campsites have full or partial views of the river. The River View campsites are either located at or upstream of Troublemaker Rapid, which is the largest rapid on the South Fork of the American River.
River View campsites include free parking at a designated parking area; however, there is no parking located at the River Sites. There is an easy access road to all the River View campsites where you can load and unload your camping equipment.
Each River View campsite includes a private fire pit and picnic table(s). Please remember to bring fire grates, grills, or camp stoves if you intend to cook your own meals in camp. The River View campsites are a short walk to the restroom and shower facilities. Potable water spigots are located in common areas and in select sites throughout the campground. For a detailed and visual list of our campground amenities, please visit our Amenities Page.
Bring the Kids
The American River offers never-ending learning adventures for kids. What better way to introduce youngsters to the natural world and to the importance of preserving our natural resources than to spend a weekend on the river? The Resort makes for an ideal family camping location. Kids can learn to fish in our stocked catch and release pond or fish along the river bank. You can cool off in our in-ground swimming pool or take a dip in the river. You can also spend hours with your kid’s river tubing down the calmer parts of the American River.
Don’t forget to explore our region’s Gold History with a visit to James Marshall Gold Discovery State Park. The park is conveniently located within an easy 5-minute walk from the Resort. 10 Reasons Families LOVE camping at American River Resort.
What else is there to do besides camping?
Plan a river rafting trip during your stay! The American River offers rafting trips for all experience levels. Family rafting trips are available for ages 6 and older. You can add a whitewater rafting trip to your camping reservation at any time before or during your stay. Rafting trips depart from the American River Resort daily! The Sierra Foothills is an adventurer’s paradise. Use the Resort as your basecamp for adventures in our area.
Can I bring my pet camping?
Pets are family too! You are welcome to bring your family pet on your camping adventure. You will be camping in a wilderness environment. Therefore, for your pets’ safety, as well as the safety of other guests, we have Pet Rules.
River View Camping Rates
Rates based on a 2-person minimum per site. Due to size, some sites may require a higher minimum occupancy. No charge for up to 2 children under 3 years old in each campsite. Camping Check-In time is 3:00 PM and Check-Out time is 12:00 PM.
Peak Season Rates (May through Labor Day)
Weekend & Holiday Rates (2-Night Minimum on weekends, 3-Night Minimum on holidays)
River View: $30 per person/night
River View: $25 per person/night
Off-Peak Season Rates (September after Labor Day through April)
Weekend Rates (2-Night Minimum)
River View: $25 per person/night
River View: $20 per person/night
Pet Fee: $10 per pet and a maximum of two pets per campsite. Please read our Pet Rules for more information.
Groups of 24 or more qualify for Group Camping Rates. You can also contact our office for more information at 530-622-6700.
What items should we bring for camping at American River Resort?
It depends on how long you plan to camp and on other variables, such as the weather and whether you prepare your own meals or eat at local food places. We provide picnic tables and fire pits, bathrooms, and shower facilities. You provide basically everything else, including toiletries, towels, etc., for bathrooms and shower (though we do provide toilet paper). Here are printable lists of camping items suggested by REI and Coleman. Don’t forget to bring your camp games and your favorite campfire recipes.
We have a small store on site where you can purchase firewood, ice, refreshments, beer, and wine, as well as souvenirs.