Swim at Rainbow Pools

Details

Route Type

Out-and-Back

Added by Delaney Eicher

Such an amazing place to explore, swim, or just relax. A slide made off the rocks, and cliffs to jump off of into the icy water. Water is warmest in mid July, and everything is lush. Camping is not permitted at Rainbow pools, but across the freeway is a campground.

Finding rainbow pools is a little tricky, since it is off the side of a highway, but when you find it there is parking and bathrooms. There is a easy walkway to get down to the pools themselves, and trails to climb to the top to slide or jump off the rocks. Many people tend to fish up top underneath the bridge, but be careful for some slithery friends! The water is quite cold since it does come from the melted snow, but is bearable. Many kids like to slide off of the "slide" which is where the rocks are smoothed out and creates a waterfall into the pools. Daredevils can jump off some of the rocks above into the icy water. Besides the cold water, it is worth it. Camping is not permitted at rainbow pools, but across the street there is a campground. 

Please remember to keep this area clean and take all trash out with you when you leave. 

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Know for

Chillin
Camping
Fishing
Photography
Swimming
Bathrooms
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Forest
Handicap Accessible
River
Scenic
Waterfall
Wildflowers
Wildlife
Cliff Jumping
Swimming Hole

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Reviews

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Perfect for the Littles in Mid-July

The water is so warm it was actually surprising. The lagoon under the falls is beautiful & fun, the jump is intense and exhilarating. Above the falls, there are small water holes that are very fun to explore. The bottom is small gravel, not painful for my older kids but I put water socks on the 2 year old. They had a wonderful day and we had to return the next day for more. The creek (river?) is easy to access from the parking lot, there are bathrooms and it is very clean, which was awesome. I definitely recommend it on those hot 100 degree days that hit the Stanislaus county.

Great spot, starting to get a little crowded.

This is a great spot for some easy swimming, and if you're brave enough a nice jump off of the big rock! My dad grew up in Sonora and has been taking my sisters and I here since we were small. The word has gotten out though, so depending on the day you go it can get pretty crowded, but the people are friendly and it's a nice place to go for a afternoon of fun.(:

199 total saves

4.5/5

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

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