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Sacramento River
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Sacramento River

The Sacramento River is the longest river in the state of California.

Starting near Mount Shasta, the river flows 382 miles southwest through the northern Central Valley of California, between the Cascade and Sierra Nevada ranges. Shortly after being joined by the American River, it forms the Sacramento River Delta along with the San Joaquin River, and then finally flows into the north arm of the San Francisco Bay.

The river is navigable for 180 miles, and is used by ocean-going ships as far inland as the city of Sacramento. Marine animals such as gray whales and sea lions are occasionally found far inland after navigating the river for food or refuge and then losing track of how to get back to the Pacific Ocean.

Its chief tributaries are the Pit River, Feather River, McCloud River and American River. The Pit River is the longest tributary, but the Feather and American rivers carry larger volumes of water.

See also