The Yuba River Watershed stretches from the western slope of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range, near Donner Pass, to the Feather River in Yuba City. The Yuba River is made up of three tributaries that include the North Yuba, Middle Yuba and South Yuba, all of which flow westward on the eastern side of the Sacramento Valley.
Annual runoff from the river averages about 2.4 million acre-feet. 15 percent is diverted from the lower Yuba River by the Yuba Water Agency and local irrigation districts to provide water to farmers who raise rice, fruit, livestock and other crops.
As one of California's signature anadromous fish streams, the lower Yuba River supports Chinook salmon and steelhead, and is one of the few rivers in the Central Valley without salmon hatcheries.