Cliff Jumping @ California’s Best Swimming Hole: God’s Bath

Miles Clark | Cliff JumpingCliff Jumping

God’s Bath is one of thousands of secret swimming holes in the California foothills.  The CA foothills hide a plethora of ideal swim holes with their hot summertime temperatures (often in the 100s), ice cold streams (water that was snow about an hour before), plentiful H2O, and wildly varied geography.

Foot dropping into cliff jump number 2 at god’s
Foot dropping into cliff jump number 2 at god’s

This complex combination makes for some truly invigorating swimming hole experiences.

Contemplating the waterfall cliff.

You jump in, gasp, catch your breath, dive underwater, open your eyes, pop up, scream, and swim to the side as fast as you can.  This is why it’s key to find a spot where you can cliff jump into the frigid waters.

Snorkel is key here. Foot emerges from the granite bridge hole

Cliff jumping provides the necessary thrill to repeatedly get you into the ice bath.  The 100F degree temps don’t hurt in getting you in either.  Beer doesn’t hurt either…

The God’s Bath zone. Beer in hand.

Many of these swimming holes are stunning.  God’s Bath is no exception.  The combination of deep and shallow crystal clear water reflects a multitude of color back to the human eye.  Deep blues and blacks, sharp yellows and oranges, warm greens and grays, small rainbows and prisms.

About to get chilled out.

The coolest feature at God’s bath is the granite bridge.  You can jump in off the little waterfall-cliff, swim under a granite bridge, and pop out in a hole milled out by the stream (you’ll see this in the video).  It’s just another perk that makes God’s Bath one of the best swimming holes in California.

See the green light coming from under the bridge. There are even some trout visable

(let us know if you like these CA swimming hole reports… we’ve got a few more secret spots to spill)


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16 thoughts on “Cliff Jumping @ California’s Best Swimming Hole: God’s Bath

  1. At one point the road to God’s Bath washed away and there was no access but it is fixed and you can get there now. I went this last weekend and it was amazing and not at all destroyed. The only things destroying it are the assholes that leave their garbage everywhere. Such a shame that the same people that will drive hours and hike out into this beautiful spot are leaving garbage everywhere.

  2. Has anyone been to Gods Bath since 2014 from this thread? I was there in July 2013 before the Rim fire. Let me know if it is accessible please?

  3. I hope people can see this post. Gods bath is closed due to fires. I just drove from Galt and spent night at the casino with plans to do the hike this morningThere are signs posted, a few miles past the Stanislaus national forest sign, and rangers waiting to warn you of fines if you decided to pass anyway.

  4. This post is old. The video and pics are from previous years. I also heard that the rim fire might have reached the hole. Please if anyone knows if this is true post it!!!

  5. I had heard that God’s Bath was destroyed in the Rim fire it seems by this video and post looks like we would be good to go and head up at the end of the month? Can you post a link for directions, link above is not working. Thanks!

  6. Been swimming in South Yuba River. Section between Nevada City to Donner Pass is warm enough to stay
    in the water. Tomorrow I get training to help SYRCL take temperature & water quality readings.

  7. What kind of losers bring glass bottles to a place like this? Especially with all the quality beers being put into cans these days. Come on now…. no excuse!

    1. Cans > glass. The hike uphill out of some of the holes I frequent is much easier when you aren’t carrying pounds of glass.

  8. Angora lakes in Tahoe is a great spot to cliff dive nice tall cliffs from 20 to about 60 feet with warm water

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