Big drops (Class I to V+), complex rapids and excellent scenery characterize the Upper Gauley. Some of the major rapids encountered include 'The Big Five": Insignificant, Pillow Rock, Iron Ring, Lost Paddle, and Devil's Backbone (also known as Sweet's Falls). Because of the challenging nature of the Upper Gauley, we do not recommend this for folks who are intimidated by prior rafting trips, unadventurous or cannot swim.
This daylong Gauley River raft trip is an extreme adventure in the best-made rafts available - Avon by Zodiak of North America. The 14' Avon Adventurer self-bailing raft holds 7 paddlers for each guide and features spirit, agility and stability.
Designated as the Gauley River National Recreation Area in 1988, this entire 28 mile stretch of the Gauley River has well over 100 challenging rapids. Slightly smaller in size than the New River Gorge, the Gauley River canyon is steep, remote, vernal, rugged, and stunning. Mile for mile, the Gauley River offers more tantalizing white water than any other commercially paddled river.
Beginning the first weekend after Labor Day weekend (September 9) and ending six weeks later, the US Army Corps of Engineers releases water from Summersville Lake into the Gauley's riverbed for the Fall Gauley Draw Down. .
What to Expect:
Arrive at Class VI to a complimentary reception of Starbuck's coffee and juice in Chetty's Pub. Chetty's offers an assortment of a' la carte breakfast items.
Check-in with your Trip Leader and fill out release forms (minors unattended by legal guardians must bring a signed Class VI release form day of trip).
Change into your river wear, wetsuits and windbreakers are recommended, grab a life jacket and helmet, then load up and head for the river.
Approximate 45 minute bus ride to put-in.
On route or at put-in, your trip leader and guide deliver a safety talk covering the fundamentals of rafting and proper use of river equipment.
Enjoy our deli lunch part way down the river.
At the take-out point, the gear is loaded onto our vehicles and we head back to Class VI while enjoying a complimentary beverage.
Back at Class VI enjoy a hot shower (don't forget your towel), shop at our Canyon Rim Store, take a stroll to our scenic overlook and enjoy a buffet dinner at Smokey's On The Gorge - all located at Class VI's canyon rim facility.
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