Home
Secretary Day

California Rivers

California Rivers

The geography of the state of California says a lot about the precipitation patterns and water sources found within the boundaries of the state. The main source of water for the state of California comes from the mountain ranges and the coast. The mountain provides with melted water as well as rain water which flow down in streams and join the main river body. The ocean and the different bay areas along the coastline have many sublets through which river water (fresh water) is emptied in to the ocean. It also has many creeks which burrow in the coastline and reach some of the interior parts of the state.

Rivers of the North Coast

  • One of the rivers found on the north coast is the Smith River. This is one of the few rivers to flow freely along the pacific coast for approximately 20 miles. The mountain ranges at the south of the Oregon border supply the river.
  • The Klamath River is another example of rivers of California. The origin of this particular river is in the state of Oregon and it cuts through the Cascade Range of mountains to empty in the Pacific Ocean. A large part of the river also flows through Klamath National Forest and Six Rivers National Forest. This river is thus also used for recreational activities.
  • The Trinity River is perhaps the longest tributary of the Klamath River and is nearly 130 miles long.

Tributaries of the San Francisco Bay

  • The Petaluma River is one of the most important water bodies in the state of California. The river originates near the farmlands of Cotati and flow through Sonoma and Marin counties only to empty in the San Pablo Bay.
  • The Pit River is one of the three rivers to cross the Cascade Range. It is also a major source of water supply to the Central Valley of California and is approximately 315 miles long.
  • The McCloud River flows east of and parallel to the Sacramento River. The McCloud is divided in to two basic sections with the first one is called the Upper McCloud and it lasts from the point of origin to the reservoir and the lower McCloud starts at the reservoir and lasts up till lake Shasta.
  • The Feather River is one of the most important tributaries of the Sacramento River. This river particularly has been associated with the gold rush of the 19th Century. It mainly supplies water to the central and southern part of California. It is also the main source for the California State Water Project.

These are just a few examples of the many rivers and creeks flowing through the length and breadth of the state of California.

Far North Coast

  • Smith River
    • South Fork Smith River
    • North Fork Smith River
    • Middle Fork Smith River
    • Rowdy Creek
  • Klamath River
    • Terwer Creek
    • Blue Creek
    • Pecwan Creek
    • Trinity River
      • South Fork Trinity River
        • Hayfork Creek
        • East Branch South Fork Trinity River
      • North Fork Trinity River
      • New River
    • Copper Creek
    • Salmon River
    • Scott River
      • Canyon Creek
      • Snicktaw Creek
      • Snackleford Creek
    • Shasta River
      • Parks Creek
      • Big Springs Creek
    • Lost River
  • Redwood Creek (Humboldt County)
  • Little River (Humboldt County)
  • Mad River
    • Maple Creek (California)

Tributaries of Humboldt Bay

  • Jolly Giant Creek
  • Jacoby Creek
  • Eureka Slough
    • Freshwater Slough
      • Freshwater Creek
  • Elk River (California)
  • Salmon Creek (Northern Humboldt County)

North Coast

  • Eel River
    • South Fork Eel River
      • East Branch South Fork Eel River
      • Cedar Creek
      • Tenmile Creek
    • North Fork Eel River
    • Middle Fork Eel River
      • North Fork Middle Fork Eel River
      • Thatcher Creek
      • Black Butte River
    • Van Duzen River
      • Yaeger Creek
    • Bull Creek (Humboldt County)
  • Bear River (Humboldt County)
  • Mattole River
    • North Fork Mattole River
    • Upper North Fork Mattole River
  • Usal Creek
  • Noyo River
  • Big River
  • Little River (Mendocino County)
  • Albion River
  • Navarro River
    • Rancheria Creek
    • Anderson Creek
  • Garcia River
  • Gualala River
    • Wheatfield Fork
  • Russian River
    • East Fork Russian River

Tributaries of San Francisco Bay

  • Petaluma River
  • Sonoma Creek
  • Napa River
  • Sacramento River:
    • Dye Creek
    • Payne's Creek
    • Pit River
      • McCloud River
      • Hat Creek
      • Burney Creek
      • Fall River
    • Clear Creek
    • Rock Creek
    • Spring Creek
      • Spring Creek
      • Boulder Creek
      • Slickrock Creek
    • Flat Creek
    • Cow Creek
    • Cottonwood Creek
    • Battle Creek
    • Mill Creek
    • Deer Creek
    • Big Chico Creek
    • Stony Creek
    • Butte Creek
    • Feather River
      • North Fork Feather River
      • Fall River
      • Yuba River
      • Bear River
    • Dry Creek
    • American River
      • North Fork American River
      • South Fork American River
      • Rubicon River
        • Gerle Creek
      • Silver Creek
      • Slab Creek
    • Putah Creek
    • Cache Creek
      • Forbes Creek
    • Cache Slough
      • Miner Slough
      • Lindsey Slough
      • Lookout Slough
      • Steamboat Slough
      • Ulatis Creek
        • Horse Creek
  • San Joaquin River:
    • Mokelumne River
      • Dry Creek
      • Cosumnes River
      • Bear River
    • Calaveras River
    • Stanislaus River
    • Tuolumne River
      • Clavey River
      • South Fork Tuolumne River
      • Middle Fork Tuolumne River
        • Cottonwood Creek
      • Falls Creek (California)
        • Branigan Creek
      • Tiltill Creek
      • Rancheria Creek
        • Breeze Creek
      • Piute Creek
      • Register Creek
      • Ten Lakes Basin Creek
      • Cathedral Creek
        • South Fork Cathedral Creek
      • Conness Creek
        • Alkali Creek
      • Dingley Creek
      • Delaney Creek
      • Budd Creek
      • Unicorn Creek
      • Dana Fork Tuolumne River
        • Gaylor Creek
        • Parker Pass Creek
          • Mono Pass Creek
      • Lyell Fork Tuolumne River
        • Ireland Creek
        • Kuna Creek
      • Rafferty Creek
        • Evelyn Lake Creek
    • Hospital Creek
    • Ingram Creek
    • Merced River
      • Dry Creek
      • North Fork Merced River
      • South Fork Merced River
        • Alder Creek
        • Rail Creek
      • Bridalveil Creek
      • Yosemite Creek
        • Tioga Pass Creek
      • Tenaya Creek
        • Snow Creek
      • Illilouette Creek
      • Fletcher Creek
        • Florence Creek
      • Lyell Fork
        • Hutching Creek
      • Red Peak Fork
        • Red Devil Creek
      • Merced Peak Fork
      • Triple Peak Fork
        • Forester Creek
    • Chowchilla River
    • Fresno River
    • Big Creek
  • Pinole Creek
  • Alameda Creek
  • Coyote Creek
  • Guadalupe River
  • Stevens Creek
  • San Francisquito Creek
  • Redwood Creek (San Mateo County)
  • San Mateo Creek

Tulare Lake

    • Tulare Lake Basin
      • Kings River
        • North Fork Kings River
          • Dinkey Creek
          • Post Corral Creek
        • Middle Fork Kings River
          • Blue Canyon Creek
          • Lost Canyon Creek
          • Kennedy Creek
          • Dougherty Creek
          • Goddard Creek
          • Cartridge Creek
          • Dusy Creek
        • South Fork Kings River
          • Roaring River
            • Sugarloaf Creek
            • Ferguson Creek
          • Bubbs Creek
          • Gardiner Creek
          • Woods Creek
      • Kaweah River
        • North Fork Kaweah River
        • Middle Fork Kaweah River
          • Paradise Creek
        • East Fork Kaweah River
      • Tule River
        • North Fork Tule River
        • Middle Fork Tule River
          • North Fork Middle Fork Tule River
        • South Fork Tule River
      • Kern River
        • Poso Creek
        • North Fork Kern River
          • Peppermint Creek, Tulare County
          • Brush Creek, Tulare County
          • Durrwood Creek, Tulare County
          • Salmon Creek, Tulare County
          • Dry Meadow Creek, Tulare County
          • Tobias Creek, Tulare County
          • South Creek, Tulare County
          • Cannell Creek, Tulare County
        • South Fork Kern River
          • Fish Creek, Tulare County
          • Trout Creek, Tulare County
          • Lost Creek, Tulare County
          • Talyor Creek, Tulare County
          • Manter Creek, Tulare County
        • Lower Kern River

Mono Lake

  • Cottonwood Creek
  • Rancheria Gulch
  • Wilson Creek
  • Mill Creek
    • Dechambeau Creek
    • Deer Creek
    • Lundy Lake reservoir
    • South Fork Mill Creek
      • Lake Canyon Creek
  • Lee Vining Creek
    • Beartrack Creek
    • Gibbs Canyon Creek
    • Warren Fork Lee Vining Creek
      • West Fork Warren Fork Lee Vining Creek
    • Glacier Canyon Creek
      • Mine Creek
    • Saddlebag Creek
  • Rush Creek
    • Walker Creek
    • Parker Creek
      • Alger Creek
    • Reversed Creek
      • Fern Creek
      • Yost Creek
    • Crest Creek
  • Dry Creek

Central Coast

  • San Gregorio Creek
  • Pescadero Creek
    • Butano Creek
      • Little Butano Creek
      • South Fork Butano Creek
      • North Fork Butano Creek
    • Honsinger Creek
    • Peters Creek
    • Fall Creek
    • Waterman Creek
  • San Vicente Creek (Santa Cruz County)
  • San Lorenzo River
    • Carbonera Creek
    • Zayante Creek
      • Bean Creek
  • Pajaro River
    • San Benito River
    • Tres Piños Creek
  • Elkhorn Slough
  • Salinas River
    • Estrella River
    • Nacimiento River
    • San Antonio River
  • Carmel River
  • Little Sur River
  • Big Sur River
    • Pfeiffer-Redwood Creek
  • McWay Creek
  • San Luis Obispo Creek
  • Santa Maria River
    • Cuyama River
    • Sisquoc River
  • Santa Ynez River

South Coast

  • Montecito Creek
    • Cold Springs Creek
      • East Fork Cold Springs Creek
      • West Fork Cold Springs Creek
  • San Ysidro Creek
    • Oak Creek
  • Picay Creek
    • Romeros Canyon Creek
  • Toro Canyon Creek
    • Garapata Creek
    • Buell Reservoir Creek
  • Arroyo Paradon
  • Santa Monica Creek
    • Franklin Creek
  • Carpinteria Creek
    • Gobernador Creek
      • Eldorado Creek
      • Steer Creek
    • Carpinteria Reservoir Creek
  • Rincon Creek
    • Casitas Creek
    • Sulphur Creek
    • Catharina Creek
  • Los Sauces Creek
  • Madrianio Creek
  • Padre Juan Canyon
  • Ventura River
    • Manuel Canyon
    • Cañada Larga
    • Cañada de Alisos
    • Coyote Creek
      • Lake Casitas
        • Laguna Creek
        • Willow Creek
        • Santa Ana Creek
          • Roble-Casitas Canal
        • Poplin Creek
      • Deep Cat Lake
      • West Fork Coyote Creek
      • East Fork Coyote Creek
    • Matilija Creek
      • Rattlesnake Creek
      • Lime Creek
      • Murietta Creek
      • Middle Fork Matilija Creek
      • Upper North Fork Matilija Creek
    • North Fork Matilija Creek
  • Santa Clara River
    • Castaic Creek
    • Piru Creek
    • Sespe Creek
  • Malibu Creek
  • Ballona Creek
  • Dominguez Channel
  • Los Angeles River
    • Arroyo Calabasas
      • Dry Creek
    • Bell Creek
      • Dayton Creek
      • Woolsey Canyon Creek
    • Browns Canyon Wash
      • Diablo Canyon Creek
      • Mormon Canyon Creek
    • Aliso Creek
      • Limekiln Canyon
      • Wilbur Canyon
    • Bull Creek
    • Tujunga Wash
      • Big Tujunga Creek
        • Lucas Canyon Creek
      • Little Tujunga Creek
      • Pacoima Wash
    • Burbank Western Channel
    • Verdugo Wash
    • Arroyo Seco
    • Rio Hondo
    • Compton Creek
  • San Gabriel River
    • Coyote Creek
      • Carbon Creek
      • Fullerton Creek
      • North Fork Coyote Creek
        • Miranda Creek
      • Brea Creek
      • Imperial Creek
    • East Fork San Gabriel River
    • West Fork San Gabriel River
  • Talbert Channel
  • Santa Ana River
    • Huntington Beach Channel
    • Santiago Creek
      • Handy Creek
      • Black Star Canyon
    • San Antonio Creek
      • Cucamonga Creek
      • Chino Creek
    • Temescal Creek
      • Aberhill Creek
        • Lake Elsinore
          • San Jacinto River
            • Canyon Lake
              • Salt Creek
              • San Jacinto River
                • Indian Creek
                • North Fork San Jacinto River
                  • Logan Creek
                  • Stone Creek
                  • Black Mountain Creek
                  • Fuller Creek
                • South Fork San Jacinto River
                  • Strawberry Creek
                  • Hemet Lake
                    • Herkey Creek
    • Lytle Creek
    • Mill Creek
  • San Diego Creek
    • Sand Canyon Wash
    • Peters Canyon Wash
    • Agua Chinon Creek
    • Bee Canyon Wash
  • Laguna Canyon
  • Aliso Creek (Orange County)
  • Salt Creek
  • San Juan Creek
    • Trabuco Creek
      • Oso Creek
  • Prima Deshecha Cañada
  • Segunda Deshecha Cañada
  • San Mateo Creek
    • Christianitos Creek
    • Devil Canyon Creek
    • Bluewater Creek
    • Tenaja Creek
  • San Onofre Creek
  • Santa Margarita River
    • Temecula Creek
    • Murrieta Creek
  • San Luis Rey River
    • West Fork San Luis Rey River
  • San Dieguito River
  • San Diego River
    • San Vicente Creek
    • Los Coches Creek
    • Forester Creek
    • Conejos Creek
    • Chocolate Creek
    • Cedar Creek
    • Boulder Creek
  • Sweetwater River
  • Otay River
  • Tijuana River

Tributaries of the Gulf of California

  • Colorado River

Carrizo Plain

  • Wallace Creek

Salton Sea

  • Alamo River
  • New River
  • San Gorgonio River
  • Whitewater River
  • Salt Creek

Great Basin

  • Lost River
  • Susan River
  • Truckee River
    • Little Truckee River
  • Carson River
  • Walker River
  • Amargosa River
  • Owens River
    • Rock Creek
    • Big Pine Creek
    • Bishop Creek
  • Mojave River

   More in Travel