Paddling

Find paddling gear, river guides, and stories from the water here. Kayaking, canoeing, rafting, and stand-up paddleboarding all have a home in the Blue Ridge, in both whitewater and flatwater settings. We’ve got your best river destinations and plans ready, from the Youghiogheny in Pennsylvania and West Virginia’s New River Gorge to the Green in North Carolina and the Chattooga of Georgia – plus everything in between.

Pioneering Paddle: Experience the Daniel Boone Heritage Canoe Trail 

By Travis Hall | 09 Aug 18
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The Daniel Boone Canoe Trail

Paddle the Daniel Boone Heritage Canoe Trail, a 22-mile stretch of the Yadkin River that retraces the life of the Piedmont pioneer.

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Summer Road Trips: For The River Runners

By Jess Daddio | 28 Jul 18
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Location: Eastern Tennessee Distance: 123.6 miles Driver: Kirk Eddlemon Instructor, Ace Kayaking School Guidebook Author, Whitewater of the Southern Appalachians Knoxville, Tenn. “Eastern Tennessee, in general, is a very unsung area for whitewater. Instead of being in North Carolina on a river next to a road with 500 other people, you’re paddling in a pristine…

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Who Placed a Pipe Bomb in a Popular Swimming Hole?

By Mary Zook | 23 Jul 18
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An active pipe bomb was found in a popular swimming hole in North Carolina’s Pigeon River. Authorities still do not know who placed the bomb or their motives.

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Dane Jackson’s Spring Cleaning

By Justin Forrest | 03 Jul 18
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Every year, East Tennessee native Dane Jackson returns home to organize a two-day river cleanup, promoting environmental responsibility and paddling. If you’re into whitewater, then you know Dane Jackson. The 24-year-old kayaking phenom is one of the winningest kayakers in the world, with over 80 first-place victories under his belt. While he spends most of…

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Different Strokes: Bellyak founder Adam Masters picks his go-to gear

By Graham Averill | 16 Jun 18
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Adam Masters was born into kayaking. His father, Bill Masters, founded Perception Kayaks in the ‘70s and had a large hand in taking the sport mainstream thanks to Perception’s affordable plastic boats. Adam has been kayaking all his life, but in the last several years, he’s made his own contribution to the world of paddlesports…

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The Pace of Paddling: Learning from the French Broad at All Speeds

By Brooke Burrows | 10 May 18
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After about three hours on the French Broad River, my arm muscles start to burn and I begin to regret my decision to try out the 20-mile stretch that the participants of the upcoming Riverfest Canoe Relay will traverse. Turning to my paddling guide Jayne for reassurance, I frame a half-statement, half question: “We’re going…

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Stay Wild Chattooga: Celebrate the South’s Wildest River on May 11

By BRO Staff | 01 Apr 18
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Help protect the South’s Wild and Scenic Chattooga River at a May 11 fundraiser hosted by the Chattooga Conservancy.

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French Broad River Oil Spill: Still More Questions Than Answers

By Emily Shea | 19 Feb 18
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The French Broad Oil Spill two weeks ago has largely disappeared from the media, but its effects on drinking water and aquatic systems have not.

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Southeast Steals the Show at ICF World Championships

By Travis Hall | 04 Dec 17
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Paddlers hailing from the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic represented the USA in a big way at this year’s International Canoe Freestyle World Championship in San Juan, Argentina.

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WATCH: Pat Keller Gives Insider Tips on Green Race While Running Rapids on the Green River

By Travis Hall | 02 Nov 17
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Pat Keller gives his insider tips on whitewater kayaking North Carolina’s Green River in preparation for this weekend’s Green Race.

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Maniac Hits 40+ MPH Racing Down A Drainage Ditch In A Kayak

By BRO Staff | 29 Sep 17
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This trip down a drainage ditch in a kayak nearly ended with an extremely painful crash about 10 times, but he pulled it off.

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Native River: A solo SUP’er journeys the length of the Little Tennessee

By Chris Lechner | 25 Sep 17
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Paddleboarder Chris Lechner completes an SUP first descent of the 139-mile Little Tennessee River. Along the way, he uncovers history beneath the water and wisdom from unexpected sources.

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A Wild Wonderful Weekend at Gauley Fest 2017

By Road Team | 19 Sep 17
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Have you ever been to Gauley Fest? See how the madness ensued in the Live Outside and Play Road Team’s recap of Gauley Fest 2017!

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Jumping In

By Graham Averill | 11 Aug 17
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It’s been said that having a child is both the least and most selfish thing a person can do. Eight years into this parenting experiment and I can honestly say it’s 90% selfish, 10% unselfish.

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What’s the best kayak for your outdoor lifestyle?

By Ashley Kairis | 06 Aug 17
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Kayaking is a diverse outdoor sport that can be enjoyed independently or tandem and anywhere from the oceans of the coast to the rushing rivers of the valleys. For every paddler from the morning kayak along the banks of a calm lake to the weekend warriors who rip roar through class four rapids, there is…

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