Located in historic Knights Ferry, the information center describes the rich history of the Stanislaus River and surrounding area. Display topics include salmon life cycles, Native American culture, the nearby covered bridge and a century-old flour mill. A short video introduction to the parks is available for viewing. Special programs may be set up by calling the park office.
Three campgrounds offer a unique camping experience for groups or individuals. Access is by boat, foot, or bicycle only. Campgrounds at Horseshoe Road, Valley Oak and McHenry Avenue Recreation Areas provide picnic tables, restrooms, garbage cans and fire pits. Drinking water is available only at the McHenry Avenue Recreation Area. Camping is by permit only and reservations are recommended.
The four miles of rapids above Knights Ferry draw white-water enthusiasts from throughout the world. Experience and professional quality white-water equipment are required as some rapids are classified for teams of experts only. The river below Knights Ferry offers more tranquil boating for less experienced water enthusiasts. Bring your own or rent equipment from one of several local concessionaires. The use of motorized boats is limited.
Check the river flow before boating
Stanislaus River Boating Regulations
||No motors allowed
|Horseshoe Road Recreation Area
||Orange Blossom Recreation Area
||Electric motors only
Orange Blossom Recreation Area
|Highway 120 Bridge (Oakdale)
||10 Horsepower gas motors
5 mph speed limit
|Highway 120 Bridge
||San Joaquin River
The river is open to fishing from January 1 to March 31, and the fourth Saturday in May to October 31 each year. Trout, smallmouth bass, striped bass, carp, channel and white catfish and black crappie tempt anglers. Special regulations restrict bait, size and possession limits. The entire river is closed to fishing from November 1 to December 31 for protection of the fall Chinook salmon run.
The possibilities are endless - hiking, boating, photography, picnicking, fishing, wildlife viewing and camping are but a few examples. All parks offer picnicking facilities, restrooms and access to the river. Historic buildings and access to the upper river canyon draw visitors to the Knights Ferry Recreation Area, but visitors to the lower parks will enjoy the quiet river landscape. Come and explore!
Hiking trails in Goodwin Canyon, Knights Ferry, Orange Blossom, Valley Oak and McHenry Avenue offer short tours of lush river woodlands. Preservation of the natural habitat is a major objective of the Stanislaus River Park System.
Fees are charged year-round for camping only. The Golden Age and Golden Access passport program expired Dec. 31, 2006. However, both passes are still honored as evidence of eligibility for related discounts at U.S. Army Corps of Engineers parks.
||$40 - $50
||$50 & up
|* - Access by boat, foot or bicycle only
Corps parks also honor two of the America the Beautiful - The National Parks and Federal Recreation Lands Passes: the Interagency Senior and Interagency Access passes. The Corps does not sell or issue either pass.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers sells an annual pass for $30. The Corps Annual Pass gives unlimited access to day-use areas at any Corps park for one calendar year, and is sold at all Corps parks.