Whitewater Rafting on the New River - Destination Adventure - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

Whitewater Rafting on the New River - Destination Adventure

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FAYETTE COUNTY, WV (WOWK) - How do you feel about an adventure involving obstacles with names like Pinball, Butcher’s Block, Thread the Needle and Meat Grinder? Sounds pretty intimidating, Right? Well, in tonight’s destination adventure, we’re heading down to the New River to take you through them all and you don't even have to get your feet wet.

On this weeks episode of destination adventure, we’re in one of the most beautiful and iconic places in West Virginia. I am standing beneath the New River Gorge Bridge. So, what you hear are rapids, and we're taking you down those today in a white water raft.

To get ready for the adventure, I've hooked up with an outfitter, River Expeditions, and they've hooked me up with all of the gear I'll need for today's adventure, a paddle, a pfd, a helmet and most importantly, my go-pro camera so I can take you along with me.

After breaking into groups of eight, I tram up with river guide Dylan.

“Sit in the boat one foot forward and one foot back,” explains Dylan. “That way. you have two points holding in the raft. Whenever we're in the rapids, spreading the feet apart helps hold you in.” 

We get a quick lesson on paddling safety and commands before we hit the real rapids.

“If I say set ready, it means that we are about to start paddling,” added Dylan. “So, let's get ready and all forward.”

It wasn't long before we got to taste our first big rapids of the day.

“All forward,” says Dylan.

Now, for a little warm up.

“Take a break,” he says.

That was just enough to whet our appetite. Now our group was ready to tackle the real rapids. Now to a Class III.

"This one is called Inderwaves,” Dylan announces.

Rapids are ranked by their level of difficulty. With Class I being the easiest and Class VI being Niagra Falls. Today, thanks to higher water levels, we’ll take on a V.

“If you fall out of the raft, swim left as far as you can away from a big group of rocks we call the meat grinder,” he adds.

You heard right. Our next epic rapid is a Class IV and it’s called the Meat Grinder. We hope to not find out why.

This was not a bad day at the office. Next up, Butcher's Block and a 360.

“Of all the rapids we go thru today, that’s the one we drop down hill going thru the whole thing,” he explains.

Now that I've checked the Lower New off my rafting list this season, I can't wait to come back and hit the Upper Gauley at high flow this fall for some extreme world-class rapids. 

Until next time, I’m Clay Abney. Get outside and make adventure part of your next destination.

WEB EXTRA: Miller's Folly rapids on the New River are class 4/5 rapids - it's not unusual to have rafters go overboard. Guides are trained to get rafters back on board with the help of other paddlers. All on board this raft made it back safely and all of them said they can't wait to hit the rapids again!

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