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Klamath River, Klamath

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The Klamath River flows 263mi through Oregon and northern California in the United States, emptying into the Pacific Ocean. By average discharge, the Klamath is the second largest river in California after the Sacramento River. It drains an extensive watershed of almost 16000sqmi that stretches from the arid country of south-central Oregon to the temperate rainforest of the Pacific coast. Unlike most rivers, the Klamath begins in the plains and flows toward the mountains – carving its way through the rugged Cascade Range and Klamath Mountains before reaching the sea. The upper basin once contained vast freshwater marshes that provided habitat for abundant wildlife, including millions of migratory birds; now it is largely agricultural due to European settling, while the mountainous lower basin remains wild. The watershed is known for this peculiar geography, and the Klamath has been called "a river upside down" by National Geographic magazine.The Klamath is the most important coastal river south of the Columbia River for anadromous fish migration. Its salmon, steelhead and rainbow trout have adapted to unusually high water temperatures and acidity levels relative to other rivers in the Pacific Northwest. The numerous fish were a major source of food for Native Americans, who have inhabited the basin for at least 7,000 years. The first Europeans to enter the Klamath River basin were fur trappers for the Hudson's Bay Company in the 1820s; they established the Siskiyou Trail along the Klamath and Trinity rivers into the Sacramento Valley. Within several decades of white settlement, native peoples were forced into reservations.
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  • It is always exciting to see the changing colors in the fall. The rafting and kayaking opportunities in the spring and summer are exciting as well! Fishing, hiking, and camping are just some of the ot...  more »
  • It was a typical hot day and as we drove along the Klamath River, the kids wanted to go swimming. The scenery was beautiful and the water was cold, but a delight for the kids to swim in. 
  • We rented a lodge along the river for a few nights and had a wonderful experince. You can see so much wildlife through here. The salmon were spawning, otters swimming, Condors and Eagles flying, Elk a...  more »