Summer Splashing on the South Yuba River - NBC Bay Area
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Summer Splashing on the South Yuba River

Take a refreshing dip close to Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park.



    Summer Splashing on the South Yuba River
    Erin Thiem
    It's a warm-weather tradition: A cool-off in the clear water of the pretty South Yuba.

    THAT GOLD COUNTRY WATERWAY: If you've ever made your way along Highway 49, in search of charming, walk-around towns (hello, Downieville) and picturesque nature scenes, you likely encountered the Yuba River, that sparkling, wending feature that is part of the heart and soul of the area. Perhaps you stopped by the Bridgeport Covered Bridge, to snap a few pictures, or called upon Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park. Wherever you were, you definitely took in the gorgeous, calendar-worthy river with your eyes, even if you never got a chance to dip your feet below its shimmery surface. But swimming in the South Yuba River? It's a summertime sweet thing, as nostalgic as all get-out, so if you've longed to take a river dip but didn't know where to do so, this could be your refreshing destination. Gaze, then, upon...

    SOUTH YUBA RIVER STATE PARK, which is a pleasant, not-too-long drive from Nevada City, and look at what the 20-mile-long canyon has to offer. If you're interested in river-swimming, look for safe and approved places to do so, like the "emerald swimming holes" where the water isn't flowing too fast. Also? It will surprise no one who is familiar with the area's 19-century past that "panning for gold" is also on the list of activities for the park, though if you're looking to stay dry, and out of the river, hiking, too, is an option. South Yuba is also home to The Independence Trail, "the first identified wheelchair-accessible wilderness trail in the country." The park is a spirit-balming spot, year-round, from fall-color time to winter's chill, but when those swimming holes open up, and the trails get busier, the South Yuba is in its perfect-place-to-be prime.