An SUV reportedly drove off U.S. Highway 199 at about 8 a.m. Sunday, down an embankment and partly into the Middle Fork Smith River near Patrick Creek Road.
A variety of passersby helped an occupant out of the vehicle after the crash, according to a California Highway Patrol (CHP) incident report.
CHP said the Del Norte County Sheriff's Office search and rescue team used a 100-foot cable to pull the vehicle from the water.
Minor crash injuries were reported. The cause remained under investigation Monday morning.
Highway 199 was reopened within two hours.