2017 Water Levels
California has received a lot of snow this winter, and water levels on all California rivers will be very high and exciting during Spring runoff (early May through late June). Minimum age for Merced rafting trips during this time will be increased to 12 years old for 1/2 day trips, and 14 for full-day trips. Everyone must be able to swim, be in good physical condition, and be prepared for an exciting ride. Families with younger kids should wait until late June through August to raft. We are very excited that our Merced trips will have good water through the end of August! Please call our office if you have questions concerning the most appropriate time for your group to raft. 1-800-431-3636
The Merced river tumbles and twists out of Yosemite Valley, gradually mellowing into a raftable whitewater river just 4 miles below the town of El Portal. It is here that our trips begin. Offering abundant whitewater confined by a narrow corridor, this river is a must for the whitewater enthusiast. Indeed, the Merced river offers one of the best whitewater rafting paddle-boat trips in California and our meeting spot is only 45 minutes from Yosemite Valley!
For Reservations, feel free to call us or click an appropriate “Book Now” button below to book online!
Why Book your trip with ZEPHYR? Consider…
- Zephyr is the largest whitewater outfitter on the Merced river. We raft more guests each season than all other outfitters combined.
- More trip options. We offer both morning and afternoon 1/2-day trips, PLUS one full-day trip every day.
Pre-trip bus shuttle. Our meeting spot is 400 yards from our launch area. You park, we check you in, and you get right on the river.
- Photos of your trip are available for viewing immediately after your trip.
- Free use of wet-suits and paddle jackets.
- Camping, restaurants, and motels are very close to our Merced river office.
Merced Trip Options
Morning 1/2-dayMore details…
Afternoon 1/2-dayMore details…
All Merced trips meet at our Satellite Merced river office next to Indian Flat Campground. The address is: 9988 Hwy 140, El Portal, Ca.
VERY IMPORTANT: TRIPS DO NOT MEET AT OUR MAIN OFFICE IN COLUMBIA, CA. If you Google “Zephyr Whitewater”, the directions will take you to Columbia, and you will miss your trip.. Make sure you are clear on where to meet! We send you detailed driving directions after you book your reservation.
Trips on the Merced river begin and end close to the Arch Rock entrance to Yosemite Valley, and a visit to Yosemite can easily be incorporated with your rafting trip. Our staff has spent a lot of time in Yosemite, and we would be happy to help you with information on lodging, hiking, or restaurant recommendations. For additional Yosemite information, visit the Virtual Yosemite page.