FAYETTE COUNTY, WV (WOAY) – With the end of March drawing near means the beginning of rafting season is around the corner. The start of the 2021 rafting season will begin on April 1st and raft guides are excited about the upcoming season and are expecting a large turnout.
“I think that we are going to see a higher influx of people especially here coming to Adventure Tourism,” said Raft Guide Andrew Sullivan. “With the changing landscape of the pandemic, regulations slowly starting to relax and being in the outdoors I think we are going to see a pretty good attendance and probably see near record numbers this season.”
The reason Sullivan feels this year will be such a good year is because of the water conditions. Ideally, raft guides like to see a nice volume of water on the river which creates wave trains and fast drops.
“We are lucky in West Virginia that we don’t have a lot of dam control that shortens our season or effects it,” Sullivan said. “We typically have really great white water here and it’s usually pretty consistent throughout the season especially this year for summer 2021.”
In addition to the consistent water conditions the New River also offers a variety of rapid classifications to accommodate all skill levels. When it comes to the classifications the higher the number the more dangerous and challenging the rapid is.
“There’s a more family friendly beginner section, the upper New River. It’s a class two with a class three rapid section, more of an all kinds welcome section,” said Sullivan. “Then we have what we consider more of an advanced section here with the lower New River Gorge. Which goes down and underneath the bridge and you can see class three, four, and sometimes class five white water on that stretch.”
Before going on your rafting trip be sure to do research on the proper gear needed and the proper cloths to wear for the conditions.