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Beneath the summer sunshine and craggy Appalachian peaks, the rivers are running. It’s the season for exploring the best of our mountain waterways. From wide flatwater family fun to raging whitewater rapids, River Right is your guide to water play in the mountains. In following pages you’ll find profiles of featured river outfitters, as well as popular riverside destinations and events.
Check for updates and discounts online on our online River Right Database of outfitters.
It’s no exaggeration when West Virginia claims to hold America’s Best Whitewater. The Mountain State’s world-class rivers hold a range of paddling and whitewater rafting opportunities for everyone from the adventurous novice to the seasoned expert.
The New Known as the second-oldest river in the world, the New shows its wild side as it runs through West Virginia, as it drops 240 feet over one 14-mile stretch and cuts its way through a 1,000-foot-deep sandstone gorge. The New’s Class I to V rapids make it one of the most popular runs in the country. The mild Upper New is perfect for beginner fun with float and fishing trips, while the Middle New beefs up the excitement with Class II and III rapids. The famed Lower New delivers stomach-dropping excitement with class IV-V rapids through the heart of the gorge and underneath the longest steel arch bridge in the Western Hemisphere.
The Gauley Every fall, hardcore kayakers and rafters wait for a chance to run the mighty Gauley. Ranked one of the best whitewater runs in the world, the Gauley is a combination of heart-stopping excitement and breathtaking scenery. It boasts more Class IV and V rapids than any other eastern river and offers one of the most intense experiences in commercial rafting.
The Cheat North of these two rough and tumble rivers, lies the boulder-strewn canyon of the Cheat. Snowmelt and spring rain give the Cheat more than 30 technical rapids in the class III to IV range.