Here are a wide range of great resources for you to use in learning more about the Stanislaus River!


Friends of the River (FOR) – California’s pre-eminent river advocacy organization, born out of the Stanislaus campaigns and active all over the state. Join now and support FOR!

Restoring the Stanislaus River – a nonprofit formed in 2022 to lead efforts to restore the Stanislaus River.  Learn more>

American Rivers – the national river conservation organization, working in many states and at the federal level to safeguard wild rivers and restore rivers for their ecological and recreational uses:


Stanislaus – Struggle for a River (1982, Tim Palmer) – This pioneering book recounts the campaigns to save the Stanislaus and all the people and groups involved in them, along with the river’s natural and human history. Download this book (38mb PDF).

A Guide to Three Rivers -Tuolumne, Stanislaus and South Fork American (1981, John Cassidy et al for Friends of the River) – The first guidebook to the three main whitewater rivers of the middle Sierra Foothills in California – it has extensive river and geological detail, along with natural history, all mile by mile.  Download this book (27mb PDF).

NOTE: The above two PDF downloads are scanned image files and do not allow full text search..

Interpretive Guide to the America, Stanislaus and Tuolumne Rivers (1975) – a self-published booklet with details about the geology and cultural history of the Stanislaus, plus the American and Tuolumne Rivers, prepared by Bob Center, with Robert “Sarge” Preston and others. Download this document (11mb PDF).

The Personification of Natural Waterscapes (2017) – an academic thesis by Dakota Goodman reviewing the history of Friends of the River.  Download this document (2mb PDF)

Wild and Scenic Rivers – An American Legacy (2017, Tim Palmer – published on the 50th anniversary of the Wild & Scenic Rivers Act), and available from:

The Historical Significance of the Stanislaus River Campaign (PDF) – a short but important paper by Alexander Gaguine.

Stanislaus River – Wild and Scenic Study (1979) – this 150 page study (PDF) by FOR and American Rivers made the case for Wild and Scenic Status for the Stanislaus.  It’s a tremendous resource for understanding the river’s environmental and cultural significance.

The New Melones Project –  A Review of Environmental and Economic Issues (1979) – a detailed critique by the California Resources Agency of the New Melones dam.  Also this report.

You can find these and many other documents about the river and the fights to save it in this search for PDFs.


Down the Stanislaus – an 8 minute video from the book, Down the Stanislaus River (see here for how to order the book).

Small Things – a 12 minute video about what it felt like to be on the Stanislaus and to fight to save it, created by Larry Orman in 2019, from a mid-1980s three-projector slide show, with narration and music.

Parrott’s Ferry is the Limit – an 18 minute film used as a centerpiece in the later stages of the campaigns to save the Stanislaus, created by Don Briggs for Friends of the River in 1981 – view it on

Trailer for the proposed movie, “Last River Lost” – 8 minute film, produced by Christian Kallen, 2009 – view it on You TubeLearn more about this project and how to provide financial support.

Find more films and videos about the Stanislaus River.

GIS Data

Learn here about easy to use Google Earth GIS data about the river and its rapids, camps, and other features.  And don’t forget to view and download the Stanislaus River Atlas (11mb PDF) – see how here.