Frequently Asked Questions


Why use a shuttle service?

The roads in and out of the Tuolumne Canyon are notoriously bad and can wreak havoc on your vehicle, especially those not meant for dirt roads.  Security and parking space can also be a problem, especially at the Wards Ferry take out bridge. WE STRONGLY RECOMMEND THAT YOU DO NOT LEAVE VEHICLES OVERNIGHT AT THE WARD’S FERRY BRIDGE. This is a known site for vandalism of all kinds. We urge you leave your car at the Casa Loma Meeting Place and have it shuttled to Ward’s Ferry on the day you plan on taking out.  (Security is much better at the Moccasin Point Marina but this involves the additional expense/time for a boat tow, approximately 1.5 hours, 50.00/raft.)

Why use TRS?

We are a local company and the only one authorized by the USFS to operate a shuttle business in the Tuolumne River Canyon. We have been doing this for over 40 years and are proud of our impeccable safety and customer satisfaction record.  Our drivers know the terrain extremely well and we monitor the conditions of all Tuolumne access roads on a regular basis. We employ knowledgeable, trustworthy and well-trained individuals–several have been with us for many years.

Is the Casa Loma a safe place to leave my vehicle?

Casa Loma is the staging point for virtually all commercial and private trips and most boaters park their vehicles here while on the river. It is highly visible from Hwy 120, and even though it is not patrolled or locked, incidents have been few and far between.

Why can’t we use the boom trucks for our take out at Ward’s Ferry?

Due to high insurance and maintenance costs, private boom-outs at Ward’s Ferry Bridge are no longer available.  Drivers have all been instructed not to engage in this activity. Thank you for your understanding.

Is the boat tow worth the money?

It depends on how much your time is worth and how much energy you have.  The flat section between the end of Wild and Scenic canyon and the Ward’s Ferry take-out can often be paddled in less than 30 minutes, depending on reservoir level and the power of the current coming down the river.  But it can also take up to 1 hour or more, depending on how hearty your paddlers are!  The Ward’s Ferry take-out is steep, long and demanding—not an easy proposition. For this reason and more, many parties choose to continue to the next take-out at Moccasin Point Marina, about a 1.5 hour tow across Don Pedro Reservoir.  Moccasin Point has a convenient boat ramp and secure parking. To find out more about current conditions and pricing, check with Dave the tow boat driver 209.962.4965.

How can private boaters help improve conditions at the put-in and take-out?

The land management agencies and commercial outfitters work extremely hard to maintain roads, put-ins and take-outs.  But outdoor recreation is not a priority budget item for the State of California and funding is very tight.  If you would like to see better access conditions on the Tuolumne, please contact the Stanislaus National Forest, Groveland Ranger District 209 962-7825.