“The river Called. The call is the thundering rumble of distantrapids, the intimate roar of white water…a primeval summons toprimordial values.”
-John J. Craighead
Are You Ready For a Real Adventure?
Perhaps no sport provides the perfect balance of serenity and adrenaline like white water rafting. You will love whitewater soaring down the pool and rapid studded rivers of Banner Elk, Blowing Rock, Asheville, and Boone, North Carolina. Breathe in the fresh mountain air, soak up the tranquil scenery, splash your family and friends, and listen as our educated, engaging guides fill you in on all the local river trivia. Look out- here comes a rapid! Your guide will steer you gracefully through some of the best whitewater in the Southeast as you paddle hard. After a day on the river you will be relaxed, energized, and proud of your adventures. And, you will have no doubt gained a few stories!
What trip is the right Adventure For Me?
We offer a variety of white water rafting trips for people of all ages and experience. Fill us in on your comfort, budget, and the level of adventure you seek- River and Earth Adventures has a trip that suits you and your whole family. Keep reading to learn abut the trips we are currently running. For added adventure, ask about our Be-a-raft-guide-for-a-day-program.
Watauga River (section 5)
The Watauga River
Bring along the whole family for this exciting river adventure! Watauga, the Cherokee phrase for ‘sparkling water’ describes these crystal clear, immaculate waters perfectly. As you cruise down river through plentiful class two and three rapids, you will embrace the beautiful surroundings of the Cherokee National Forest and surrounding east Tennessee farmland. Featured as our beginner-rafting trip, the Watauga is appropriate for all ages and skill levels.
When you arrive at our convenient, riverside outpost in Elizabethton Tennessee, you will be personally fitted with top of the line gear. Then, you and your friends and family will load up into a River and Earth Adventures van where our knowledgeable, expert guides will give you a brief scenic tour of the area until we reach our Put in location.
After a thorough and entertaining safety talk by our expert guides, you will hop into your rafts just under the notorious, raging Wilber Dam. After a introductory float trip, you will have the opportunity to jump off a twenty foot cliff into the brisk waters beneath—a great way to wake you up for the adventure to come! Take pictures or your friends will never believe this invigorating leap of faith.
After maneuvering through several class one and two rapids you will be prepared for the infamous Anaconda rapid. This class three rapid has become the iconic image for southeastern whitewater. The cascading boulders and hidden holes make this stretch of river an exhilarating adventure for the whole family.
The remainder of your rafting journey will wind through a plethora of smaller rapids and skinny side waters. As you bump and rumble through these rapids it will be impossible to miss the beautiful scenery with plenty of colorful birds and other wildlife. Your adventure wraps up directly behind our outpost where we provide changing stations.
Want to step it up a notch? For the adventurer that wants to rev up their Watauga experience we offer single and tandem inflatable kayaks. These ‘funyacks’ are sure to provide that extra thrill along with the opportunity to learn how to steer and maneuver as well as, explore thin channels and shallower waters.
We offer the longest run on Section V of the Watauga with a trip duration of three hours, compared to the 1.5 hour trips provided by our competitors.
– Difficulty: Class II & III
– Distance: 10KM/6+miles
– Number of Rapids: 18+
– Approximate River time: 2 hours
– Minimum Age: 0 & up with an expert guide!
French Broad Whitewater Rafting
White water rafting the French Broad is a must do for the family seeking an awesome adventure!
The French Broad
This is our premier full day, high adventure wilderness whitewater rafting experience. This trip flows for more than nine breath-taking miles through the pristine wilderness of Pisgah National Forest. Abundant class three and four rapids await you on this unforgettable stretch of river. Your trip includes top of the line equipment, expert guides with years of experience and an all you can eat, deli-style lunch featuring delicious foods. (even pb&j taste awesome when you are on the river) We guarantee your journey down the French Broad will become one of the top ten trips of your life!
To get an early start for this action-packed day, you will meet us at our Boone outpost by 7:30am if you are going to ride in our shuttle van (riding the shuttle is not as comfortable as your own car but you can leave the driving to us) or at our log cabin outpost in the quaint town of Marshall by 9:30am if you are going to ride to the river in the comfort of you own car. Once you have been personally fitted with our top of the line gear, the river is a stones throw away from our Marshall outpost. To prepare you for the adventure ahead, you will then receive a fun and educational safety talk from one of our expert guides.
A plethora of rolling rapids await as you load your crew onto the raft and prepare for the ultimate adventure! The first few rapids you will encounter include the continuous, downward drops of Stairstep, the twisting and turning maneuvers throughout upper and lower Maze, and the exhilarating switchback of S-Curve.
Following these jolting, introductory rapids, the raft will drift to overlook a cliff twenty feet tall known as jump rock. Make sure to snap a photo as your friends and family plunge into the river below. We continue our adventure battling countless class two and three rapids until we reach our immaculate, riverside picnic lunch spot overlooking the infamous Turtle Rock and Big Pillow rapid. As you munch on our delicious, premium-grade lunch watch other rafters and veteran kayakers run this technical, class four rapid.
This hearty lunch will provide you the energy to continue down and conquer the long, boulder-clogged chute, culminating into a four-foot drop and large hole that is Big Pillow. Next, glide through Sandy Bottom rapid and eddy out to cool off with a swim in the fresh mountain water. Now coast pass the center island and ride some big waves and deep holes at the Ledges. Look off to the right and catch a glimpse of the historic Stackhouse, but remember to keep paddling!
Pass by the bridge where Big Laurel flows into the French Broad and don’t miss the awe of jutting, slender boulders towering above you as you ride the rollercoaster towards Needle Rock rapids. Hold on tight and paddle hard for the upcoming rapid known as Needle Falls or Kayaker’s Ledge. This world-renowned class four rapid is a five-foot plummet down rushing, exhilarating whitewater.
The grand finale of your whitewater experience consists of a series of big broken ledges funneling down to a giant, roaring hole. This extreme, class four, deep water rapid is known as Frank Bell’s. Venture straight down the middle or curve around the horseshoe for over a football fields worth of thrilling whitewater! Cruise on down some bumpy waters until you reach our take out in the town of Hot Springs where a River and Earth Adventures van will be waiting to escort you back to your car. Exhale and be sure to take plenty of pictures because your friends will never believe your wild ride!
– Distance: 13KM/8+miles
– Number of Rapids: 30+
– Approximate River time: 4-5 hours
– Minimum Age: 7 years
French Broad Float Trips
Enjoy a peaceful float down miles of gentle whitewater, joined by endless mountain vistas, swimming holes, wild flowers and wildlife. This trip is fully guided and includes a river side deli style lunch feature local and organic foods. This is a family oriented trip awesome for all ages. Located convenient to Asheville, Boone, and Blowing Rock, NC.
French Broad Afternoon Trips
Afternoon exspress trips on the French Broad river. Same trip as our full day trip just 3 miles shorter and no lunch.
Watauga Gorge EX-STREAM WHITEWATER
This is the extreme trip for the real adventure seekers! Over 5 miles of continuous class III, IV, and V rapids, this is guaranteed to be a world-class adventure. Paddle through rapids like Heavy Water, Knuckles and Stateline Falls. This is trip runs spring through fall, We take rafts at high wayer and inflatable kayaks at lower flows. You must be at least 18 years of age, in good health and in shape.
$175 Now just $125 per person- must have at least 4 participants.
One free GEM MINE BUCKET
for every group that goes rafting with us!