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TRIP OVERVIEW

Lower Gauley White Water Rafting

 

Do you like:

  • Big ol' hits?
  • Giggle-inducing waves?
  • Tight turns?
  • Chill time between rapids?
  • Some spots to get out and swim?
  • Scenery that makes you take deep, deep breaths?

The Lower Gauley white water rafting owns the sweet spot between plain-ol' big and flat-out difficult. This Gauley River rafting experience is fun for all abilities and experience levels.

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In September and October every year, the Summersville Dam releases a set amount of water — the perfect amount to turn the Fall Gauley Rafting Dates into world-class white water. In the spring, snowmelt and rains bring the Lower Gauley to fantastic, high water levels.

Other Gauley Options:

  1. Upper Gauley rafting is the answer for the hard chargers, those that want the most challenging whitewater. It's a good idea to have previous rafting experience under your belt before you tackle the Big 6 rapids. It's narrow, steep, big and flat out fun.

  2. Gauley Overnights are great for making the most of your time on the Gauley. Raft both the Upper and Lower (you can do them in order or switch them up) and camp in between at our private riverside campsites.

Lower Gauley River Rafting - All Dayrafting-lower-gauley-river-image

  • Most challenging trip recommended for first-timers
  • Plenty of Class III-V rapids
  • Trip Length:  11.5 miles (All day)
  • Meals: Hot Grilled riverside lunch at ACE's private site
  • Season: September-October
  • Minimum Age: 15
  • Minimum Height: 60 inches
 16' Raft (8+ Person Raft) - Min Age: 15
  FRI SAT SUN MON
 
 RATE $159 $179 $159 $109
Book Now
 

 14' Raft (6+ Person Raft) - Min Age: 15

Upgrade 2

  FRI SAT SUN MON
 
 RATE $184 $159 $204 $179 $184 $159 $134 $109
Book Now
 
 12' Raft (4+ Person Raft) - Min Age: 18 
  FRI SAT SUN MON
 
 RATE $209 $229  $209 $159 Call for Resevations

*Check out the Fall Gauley Rafting Dates for available dates


Gauley Rafting Marathon - All Day

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  • Upper and Lower Gauley River rafting in one day 
  • 70+ rapids
  • Trip Length: 23 miles (All day)
  • Meals: Hot-grilled lunch at Sweet's Falls – ACE's private lunch site
  • Season: September-October
  • Minimum Age: 15
  • Minimum Height: 60 inches
 16' Raft (8+ Person Raft) - Min Age: 15
  FRI SAT SUN MON
 
 RATE $209 $229 $209 $129
Book Now
 

 14' Raft (6+ Person Raft) - Min Age: 15

Upgrade 2

  FRI SAT SUN MON
 
 RATE $234 $209 $254 $229 $234 $209 $154 $129
Book Now
 
 12' Raft (4+ Person Raft) - Min Age: 18 
  FRI SAT SUN MON
 
 RATE $259 $279  $259 $179 Call for Reservations

*Check out the Fall Gauley Rafting Dates for available dates

 


Lower/Upper Gauley Rafting - 2 Days

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  • Day One - Class III-V rapids of the Lower Gauley River white water rafting
  • Day Two - Class III-V+ Upper Gauley white water rafting 
  • Trip Length: 23 Miles (2 days)
  • Meals: Hot Grilled riverside lunch both days
  • Season: September-October
  • Minimum Age: 15
  • Minimum Height: 60 inches
 16' Raft (8+ Person Raft) - Min Age: 15
  FRI/SAT SAT/SUN SUN/MON  
 RATE $269 $269 $219
Book Now
 

 14' Raft (6+ Person Raft) - Min Age: 15

  FRI SAT SUN  
 RATE $319 $319 $269 
Book Now
 
 12' Raft (4+ Person Raft) - Min Age: 18 
  FRI SAT SUN  
 RATE $369 $369  $254 Call for Reservations

*Check out the Fall Gauley Rafting Dates for available dates

 

SLIDESHOW

 

 

MORE INFO

The Lower Gauley runs in the spring and in the fall. In both seasons, weather can vary quite a bit. Be prepared to rent a wetsuit or bring your own on most days. Cotton is a poor insulating layer to wear; when cotton gets wet (like it does when you are rafting the Gauley) it actually draws heat from your body, making you colder. There is a sayiing in the white water world that you should dress for the swim.

Although no one plans to fall in the water while rafting the Gauley River, it does happen. On chilly days, wearing synthetic pile or fleece over your core along with a windbreaker works with your wetsuit (don't forget, Gauley River water is around 55 degrees) to keep you warm — and comfortable — all day. On particularly cold days, wool socks, gloves and skull caps are a good idea for conserving your body heat.


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Gauley Water Levels:

All days are scheduled for normal minimal release levels of between 2,800 to 3,200 cfs. These are ideal levels for world-class rafting on all sections of the Gauley. Water levels may vary due to weather conditions.

Don't miss your chance to go rafting on the Gauley this year!

What To Wear

Always be sure to check the weather for Summersville, WV before your trip and pack accordingly.

  • Synthetic long underwear - pants and shirt
  • Synthetic fleece sweatshirt
  • Windbreaker
  • Long-sleeve, technical shirt
  • Hat
  • Sunglasses with strap
  • River sandals or old shoes
  • Fleece or wool socks
  • Wetsuit
  • Game face
  • Video - What To Wear

What To Bring

  • Sunscreen
  • Personal prescription medication (If it's something you need to have with you at all times)
  • Extra layers
  • Spunk

Don't Bring

  • Towels
  • Wallet, keys, rings, cell phone or jewelry
  • Non-waterproof camera
  • Backpack
  • Excessive cargo

Whitewater Safety Orientation Video

GAULEY RAPIDS

Gauley River Rafting: Everything You Need to Know.

Rafting the Gauley = Heavy Duty Fun.

It doesn't get any simpler. From peak releases during Gauley Season to challenging summer flows, the Gauley always delivers.

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Upper Gauley

Big. Steep. Technical. Intense. Big. Why did we list big twice? The Upper Gauley is home to six rapids known as, well, the Big 6. Each one will quicken your pulse and make you whoop and holler. In between, don't sleep; there's plenty of whitewater to keep you on your toes.

Lower Gauley

For first-time rafters, the Lower Gauley is about as challenging as it gets. Long wave trains and big hits will put a grin on your face that just may be there permanently. Be prepared to dig in, but don't forget to take in the amazing views from the river.

Summer Gauley

Like solitude with your white water? The Summer Gauley has it in spades along with narrow chutes, steep drops and huge rocks. Take comfort, though. When you raft this legendary stretch of river, you raft with an experienced staff who've made the Summer Gauley their calling.

Gauley Overnights

Hard playing and serious relaxing are what Gauley River overnights are all about. There's plenty of rapids and plenty of food to go around. Get your Gauley on in the summer or fall and camp out at the coolest private overnight spots on the Gauley. You'll kick it around the fire, talking about the day's runs and what lies ahead.

 

Gauley River Rapids: Check out this site for detailed information concerning the awesome Gauley River Rapids.

 

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Additional Gauley Information

Rafting is only the tip of the the Gauley River's rich history. This water way has drawn men and women to its banks for more than 200 years, boasting enough diverse attractions to be designated a National Recreation Area by the United States government.

For history lovers, the Gauley story mirrors the story of the United States. The tale begins with the first West Virginia settlers in the 1770s. These pioneering European settlers braved the challenging terrain - and often-challenging relations with Native American residents who came before them.

Chapters followed on the Civil War and the timber, mine and railroad industries that continued well into the 20th century. The great civil works projects of the 1960s saw completion of the Summersville Dam near the Gauley's headwaters just before commercial rafting began on the New River. Though the Gauley River had been successfully run before the dam was built, it was the regulated flows that made commercial whitewater rafting possible.

Gauley River Today

The Gauley River's reputation these days is built on recreation. Between the Gauley River National Recreation Area, Summersville Lake and white water rafting, there is plenty to do.

The Gauley winds through three sections: the Upper, Middle and Lower, featuring different difficulty levels and amazing scenery. Many rafting outfitters offer trips from Spring to Fall, depending on local precipitation and water released by the Army Corps of Engineers from the Summersville Dam.

Gauley Season, a 22-day schedule of releases for white water enthusiasts in September and October, is the capstone to the rafting season in West Virginia. Each season, more than 60,000 paddlers take on world-famous rapids such as "Insignificant," "Pillow Rock" and "Sweet's Falls."

Beyond Rafting

Alongside the Gauley River, hikers, anglers and hunters enjoy the lush forest and abundant wildlife of the Monongahela National Forest. The area is home to many rare and threatened plants, such as Virginia spiraea. Along with rafting in the fall, you can also explore the brilliant foliage soaring along the New River Gorge through the crisp autumn air on a zip line or cruising down into the Gauley canyon on a guided mountain bike tour.

Wildlife watchers can find deer and even bear along the 26-mile corridor that stretches from the Summersville Dam to the where the Gauley and New rivers join to form the Kanawha River. Other animals that make their home in the area include 10 threatened species of mammals, birds, insects, fish and amphibians.


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2014-gauley-release-dates-image
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2014 Gauley Release Dates:

Gauley Water Levels:

All days are scheduled for normal fall water levels of between 2,800 to 3,200 cfs. These are ideal levels for world-class rafting on all sections of the Gauley. Water levels may vary due to weather conditions.


 
 
2014-gauley-release-dates-image
exp-upper-g
exp-lower-g
 

2014 Gauley Release Dates:

Gauley Water Levels:

All days are scheduled for normal fall water levels of between 2,800 to 3,200 cfs. These are ideal levels for world-class rafting on all sections of the Gauley. Water levels may vary due to weather conditions.


 
 
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