As a Sasquatch of the Three Stars Forest People, he is massive, tall, heavily muscled, and covered with shaggy brown fur. His proportions are slightly inhuman, his face broad, blunt, and brow-ridged, which dwarfs his eyes. He likes to smoke, and, like all of his kind, he is very patient. He sired Irwin Pounder, by Dr. Helena Pounder.
In the series
"B is for Bigfoot"
"I Was a Teenage Bigfoot"
In "I Was a Teenage Bigfoot", he meets Harry Dresden at a campfire in the forest, where a group of students led by Dr. Sinor attempts to attract a Bigfoot. Upon his arrival, Dresden scares the group away in a practical joke, he comments that the wizard has an underdeveloped sense of humor. He asks him again to check on his son which encounters some trouble at school.
"Bigfoot on Campus"
In "Bigfoot on Campus", he and Harry Dresden again meet outdoors at a campfire, around a dinner of steak, McAnally's Pale Ale and a cigar. River Shoulders asks for the third time that Dresden checks on Irwin, and this time Dresden asks as a payment that father and son finally meet.
In Peace Talks, he meets Harry Dresden at the Brighter Future Society, the meeting place for the namesake peace talks. He informs Dresden that he and his people decided to join the Accords after - and because of - the events in Bigfoot on Campus. When asked why, he tells Dresden it was to get the chance to repay him. He then warns Dresden that his cousin, Blood on His Soul, is in fact alive, saying he saw him less than a month prior. Following this warning, Dresden gets the two of them to a quiet place to talk, and River Shoulders explains the history and factions of his people. He implies to Dresden that he's an empath, tells him that he was born around the same time as the tale of Beowulf, and offers Dresden to teach him more. Dresden asks if he's serious, to which River Shoulders responds that Listens-to-Wind, who he taught, told him Dresden would be a good investment.
In Battle Ground, Joseph Listens-to-Wind calls him tanka. He provides assistance to Dresden throughout the book, fighting off Huntsmen, Black Court Elders (including Drakul), Octokongs, and even carries Dresden. Near the climax, he arrives with a Jotun horn, having blown it to give the false impression that Fomor support was arriving when in fact it had been destroyed. After two Senior Councilors and the Archive were defeated by Ethniu, River Shoulders attacks the Titan directly, souring through a lightning bolt unharmed since his feet weren't touching the ground when he lunged at her. However, she still arrests his forward momentum and rips his arm out of socket, defeating him.