Sunday, May 30, 2010

Bakersfield Offers California White Water Rafting Experience on the Kern River

Late season storms in the Sierra Nevada Mountains and a thick blanket of snow have white water rafting operators on the Kern River, in Central California, celebrating.

Water on the Kern River is at its highest level in years, said Darron Nilsson, operator of River's End Rafting & Adventure Co. in Bakersfield, Calif. Nilsson predicts rafting on the river will continue through Labor Day.

In recent, drought-plagued years, rafting operators were lucky to squeeze a July season out of the Kern River. But with the snow pack this year at 143 percent of normal, the river is raging. Last year’s snow pack was only 34 percent.

Most tourists think about heading into the Kern Canyon, more than a 30-minute drive on a twisting mountain road east of Bakersfield, to raft the Kern River.

But Nilsson’s company, which is located at the mouth of the canyon, in metropolitan Bakersfield, offers a quality and convenient experience for novice and experienced rafters, alike. Nilsson rates the rapids in the Rio Bravo stretch of the river he rafts as averaging Category 2 and 3.

Telephone 1-866-360-RAFT or click on the River's End Rafting website.

About the author: John Hardisty of Bakersfield retired as the city's development services director and now operates the consulting firm South Valley Solutions. John Hardisty is a once-a-year white water rafter who looks for adventure, but doesn't want to kill himself on the mighty Kern River. He discovered that River's End Rafting & Adventure Co. offers just the right balance of excitement and safety.

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