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Knights Ferry Covered Bridge
Next Ride: None Scheduled

Knights Ferry Covered Bridge dual sport adventure is the perfect spring ride for medium to large size dual sport adventure motorcycles. This ride explores the rolling foothills with a mix of curvy back roads, single-lane patched pavement and fun dirt roads. Knights Ferry is California’s longest covered bridge and stands frozen in time across the Stanislaus River as a testament of the Gold Rush.


When gold was discovered in California in 1849, Dr. William Knight rediscovered a pass he had crossed with John C. Fremont and established a ferry boat there. Soon, the ferry boat prospered and Knight and Captain Vantine built a hotel and trading post near the crossing. Knight was killed by a gunfight on the town’s main street and he was buried in an unmarked grave. Knight’s family believed Dr. Knight was stabbed to death in his bed and was buried near the gate in the yard of John Dent’s house, which was Dr. Knight’s place at the time. The Dents immediately took possession of Bill Knight’s property at Knights Ferry following the murder.  After Knight's death, Vantine operated the ferry alone until he formed another collaboration with John and Lewis Dent. In 1852, Vantine sold his properties in the area to the Dents and moved elsewhere. A new townsite under the name of “Dentville” was laid out by John Dent. The inhabitants continued to call the town “Knights Ferry” and “Knights Crossing”. In 1852 a toll bridge replaced the ferry.


From there Vantine partnered with a local, Dent, and the old whaling ferry was replaced with a more modern ferry. In 1854 Knights Ferry saw another substantial business go up as David Locke set up a flour mill (the ruins of which can still be seen today). As the flour mill became a huge success, Locke eventually bought out Dent and retained the control of crossing the Stanislaus at Knights Ferry. Instead of keeping the ferry, however, Locke brought the idea of a bridge to the people of Knights Ferry, and in early 1857 the first bridge spanning over the river in Knights Ferry became functional. This bridge, however, is not the bridge that is seen today. Under conditions that now seem unfathomable, a heavy winter and a early warm spring rain created an abundance of water in the Stanislaus, and flood waters raged through Knights Ferry at levels that were close to 35 feet over present-day low water marks (As you raft between the two bluffs, the river nearly reached the tops of the cliffs during the spring of 1862!).


Fortunately the bridge was built sturdily, and the water could not take it down. Unfortunately, the bridge upriver at two-mile bar was not built as sturdily and eventually washed down and destroyed the old Knights Ferry Bridge. This series of events led to the creation of the bridge that can still be seen in Eastern Knights Ferry. The present day covered bridge (which is a must-see if you are in the area) built in 1863, spans 330 feet and is the longest covered bridge west of the Mississippi. As successful as the building of the new bridge was, however, Knights Ferry’s prosperity that was seen during the gold rush began to fade, as commercial roots began to move closer to Oakdale and Modesto. In 1871 Knights Ferry relinquished its status as the center of government for Stanislaus County, and when the Stockton-Visalia railroad station was posted in Oakdale, Knight's Ferry quickly lost the power it once held when it controlled the river crossing. Eventually Locke sold the flour mill, and the mill was eventually transformed into a power plant owned by Stanislaus County. So too the county bought the rights to the covered bridge in the mid 1880′s. As the 20th century rolled in, Knights Ferry gradually moved away from the limelight and became the community it is today.


Many of the relics of the gold-rush, the old mill, the covered bridge, the fire station, as well as general stores and hotels, can still be seen in present day Knight's Ferry. The general store has been in operation for over 100 years as well as the local bed and breakfast. A makeshift iron jail that is over a century old resides to the east of the “center” of town- although this is (thankfully) no longer in use. The covered bridge, which has undergone a few renovations since its building, closed to automotive traffic (even after nearly 100 years the bridge still easily could carry machines that were unimagined at the time of its building!), but the public is still welcome to cross the bridge on foot. Today Knight's Ferry is a small tight-knit community that varies its look depending on what time of year you visit. During the later fall months, as the Stanislaus River begins to drop, one can see the salmon run upstream as they molt. Nearly extinct in the early 1990s, local park and recreation efforts have created environments in which the salmon now thrive. During the spring and summer months, the Stanislaus River swells and provides an excellent place for amateurs and locals to test their rafting skills, and the popular Knight's Ferry to Orange Blossom rafting run.

Single-Day Ride (20 rider max)

This dual sport adventure ride is perfect for medium to large dual sport bikes.
Off-road terrain is rated “mild to moderate” with lots of gold rush history & adventure.
Ride distance: 200+ miles round trip (60+ miles dirt roads)
One gas stop (125 mile range required)

Lunch at Knights Ferry Bar & Grill (Lunch NOT included)

Meet Time: 9:00 am at Folsom Starbucks 195 Placerville Road Folsom CA 95630

Ride returns to Folsom CA (approx 5pm)

*more details listed under "Book this Ride"

Knights Ferry Covered Bridge
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Available Dates

Date Selected: December 31st 1969

Cost: $Open Spots: Ride Days:
Additional Info:
There are no more open spots for this event, please select another date if available.
You must agree to the terms and conditions before you can register for this event.
Please print the waiver and bring it with you to this event.
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Registrant Information
Motorcycle Tours, Terms and Conditions:

Riders will be required to carry a valid U.S. or similar International drivers license with valid motorcycle license endorsement.
Riders must demonstrate solid riding ability.
Riders must be at least 21 years of age.
Helmets are required by law and must be worn by all riders.

Booking Requirements:
Tours: You will be responsible for your own motorcycle, food, gas, & lodging costs and any incidentals along the way.

Payments for the tour can be made in U.S. funds by VISA / MasterCard / AMEX / Discover. If completing the registration on-line, please remember to print and complete the waiver and bring it with you to the event. Tours require payment in full with registration.

Cancellation Policy:
Payment for the Tours is due at time of registration. There are no refunds 0-14 days before departure. If you do need to cancel, we would be happy to apply your payment to a future tour. There will be no refunds for unused services or accommodations once the tour has started. If you cancel a Tour 14 days or less prior to the tour date, there will be a $25 cancellation fee. There are no refunds if you cancel 72 hours or less prior to the tour, however tour fees can be applied to future tours. We rarely cancel or postpone a trip, but we reserve the right to do so when necessary: due to dangerous weather conditions or other reasons beyond our control. In the event of such an occurrence, we will refund your fees or apply them to another trip, but we are not responsible for any travel expenses incurred.

Travel Insurance:
Participants are responsible for their own medical insurance.

Storing unneeded luggage or gear:
If you are coming in the region with more gear than you can carry on your bike, or possibly are on an extended vacation, it's commonplace to locate a place to store this extra gear. If you are renting a motorcycle, typically the rental facility will be more than happy to store your luggage or spare gear. This is also commonplace with area hotels. Arrive a day early at your local lodging facility and request they store your extra gear. They'll be happy to comply.

Meals are NOT included in the tour cost so please bring some extra money to be able to partake in the restaurant’s the group will frequent. What is commonplace on the rides is the participants all split the ticket, or simply get separate tickets.

Overnight Tours: Lodging is always pre-booked for you. However, you will be responsible for your lodging costs. Sierra Nevada Adventures Motorcycle Tours will reserve a block of rooms for our tour participants months in advance. Our lodging typically is in Best Western or Holiday Inn type motels that have a pool and jacuzzi, and typically are within walking distance to our dinner destination. Costs range $70-$150 per night depending on the region of California we are in.

Arriving early:
If you are arriving the day prior to the tour, refer to the tour description for a link to a local recommended lodging facility near the launch point for the tour. If you are traveling some distance to reach the launch point, arriving the night prior will ensure you're fresh and ready to ride Friday morning!

When riding in California, we highly recommend that you dress in layers, to adjust to change of weather. In addition, Sierra Nevada Adventures Tours strongly recommends you wear motorcycle specific protective gear while riding a motorcycle. Temperatures during California summers are warm, although the variety of terrain covered in your tours will experience a wide range of temperature and weather conditions.

Tour Safety:
Helmets are required by law in California and Nevada. Tour participants are responsible for any traffic violations they might incur during the tour. Alcohol or drug use during the course of the tour is not permitted under any circumstance or while riding the motorcycle. Over-consumption of alcohol during our evening stop-overs is discouraged also, though we want everyone to have a good time!

California Weather:
The weather in California is often rather predictable during the summer months, namely six months straight of sunshine. Our tour dates are chosen to take advantage of our beautiful summer days, but despite our best efforts, we cannot control the weather, so please come prepared for the possibility of spring/ fall rain showers or summer heat as we will be covering a wide range of climates from high mountain elevations, to coastal areas. Sierra Nevada Adventures Tours reserves the right to make modifications to the tour at any time for any reason.

Bringing your own bike:
The majority of riders on Sierra Nevada Adventures Tours ride their own motorcycles. Sierra Nevada Adventures Tours is by no means a brand specific company. We welcome all makes of motorcycles and tour participants from all walks of life. We only ask if you bring your own motorcycle to ensure you have a new, or nearly new, set of tires and have your motorcycle in excellent running condition. Please ensure your motorcycle is ready to make a week long tour or more. Also consider obtaining some type of road side service for your motorcycle prior to arriving for your tour. You also might find it convenient to trailer your motorcycle to our starting point. If you need a place to store your vehicle and trailer, we can accommodate you provided you're arriving the day before the tour date.

Shipping your own bike:
Often, shipping your bike to your tour destination will about equal the price of a rental bike- however, you'll need to be in California at least 7-9 days to break even. If you plan on riding for a month, it will be cheaper to ship your bike across the domestic United States. Shippers may also require extended shipping times. For example, here for a month? Your shipper may require 2 weeks on the front side, and 2 weeks on the backside of your trip. Motorcycles normally ship uncrated with minimal fuel and are transported business to business. Our rental facilities will be more than happy to receive your motorcycle and have it ready when you arrive. If you would feel more comfortable aboard your own motorcycle, our helpful staff is happy to aid you with this option. We have also seen shippers deliver to dealers also to add to helping you providing a commercial setting to receive your bike.

Renting a motorcycle:
Sierra Nevada Adventures Tours does not rent motorcycles. However, we are more than happy to aid you in your rental process. BMW's and KTM’s dual sport adventure motorcycles are readily available in the San Francisco Bay Area. To ensure you get the bike you want, reserve at least 3 months in advance. Call the rental facility of your choice direct to have them familiarize you with the rental process and costs. Riders will typically pick up the bike the day before the tour date, and arrange to drop it off the following morning at open of business to return the motorcycle. Contact us for questions about rental options.

Non-U.S. Residents:
You must have your passport with you at all times when renting or touring with us if you are not a permanent resident of the United States or Canada.

Flight Arrangements:
Sierra Nevada Adventures Motorcycle Tours does not, and cannot, make flight arrangements, nor is the cost of your flight or travel cost to the starting point included in the tour price.
I agree to the terms and conditions

If you choose to pay at the event please make sure not to forget a valid form of payment. You will not be able to participate in the event if you do not bring cash or a valid credit or debit card.



Knights Ferry Covered Bridge Ride
Total: $
Please on hit the register for event button once. You will be charged the amount shown and a copy of this invoice will be emailed to the address you registered with.
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