FRESNO COUNTY, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – The portion above Pine Flat Dam remains open to approved white water rafters, while the lower section of the Kings River is closed due to life-threatening conditions, officials say.

“It has just been a blast. You know, nature’s roller coaster. It’s definitely something to be careful with,” said Casey Cornell, owner of Kings River Expeditions.

Cornell says the last few years with the drought have been tough, but this year, even after they had to open late when a flood destroyed a road leading into their base camp in April, they expect to bounce back in a big way.

“This season we’re predicting we’re gonna be rafting all the way through August, if not into September. Normally we’d be closed down by, we’d be lucky if we made it into July,” said Cornell.

Officials said that the company is able to operate this way because the upper Kings lies on U.S. Forest Service Land.

“Sierra National Forest Service, who we go through our permitting system with. So, it’s open for rafting,” said Cornell.

He stated that water conditions aren’t necessarily the friendliest for everyone.

“Very high water, very fast. That means the waves are bigger, the water’s moving a lot faster, and it is quite chilly. I mean, it’s fresh snow melt. What we raft on today is what melted 12 hours ago,” said Cornell.

Kings River Expeditions stated that they are expecting to have a long summer of rafting ahead with prime temperatures and flows expected towards the end of June and into July and August, for anyone that would like to go white water rafter.