Lower Russian River Paddle is a 5.8 mile point-to-point trail located near Occidental, California that features a river. The trail is good for all skill levels offers a number of activity options.
The Russian River has been a favorite destination for generations of San Franciscans looking to get away from the rolling chill of the seasonal fog. It's also a popular get-away for inland Bay Area residents looking for a watery escape from the summer heat. But for people more familiar with the middle stretches of the river, venturing into the lower Russian River might offer a surprise or two. Exploring the lower Russian River, from Duncans Mills to Jenner by the Sea, you are just as likely to meet animals such as North American River Otters, Harbor Seals or Pacific Pond Turtles as you are to see another person on the river. Bird lovers marvel as Barn Swallows zip by overhead, Osprey call from their nests and Great Blue Heron fish in the shallows. It is also an excellent place to study the river's ecology. Since all the runoff in the watershed, from pristine wilderness to agriculture and developed areas such as Santa Rosa, makes its way to and through this one spot, scientists can use the river as a living laboratory for how our human activities affect the water quality of the ecosystem. It is an extraordinarily wild place in the backyard of the bustling Bay Area that we encourage you to explore. Leave nothing, take only photos and, as they say up the river, "Memories that linger."