kayaking In Western NC

The Thrill of the Rivers


The area around Early Blue Motel offers some of the best kayaking in the country. Come experience family-friendly guided tours to world-class whitewater rapids, this place has it all!

Kayaking: Green River

The Green River is world-famous amongst the whitewater kayaking community. It is truly unique in that it has something for every type of kayaker (from class I – V+), flows through a pristine and protected canyon, runs 300+ days per year due to the Northbrook dam upstream, and in its tightest and steepest section flows through a rumbling granite amphitheater. Generally speaking, the river is divided into three sections. The Upper Green’s class III-IV whitewater is great for intermediate kayakers, beginners will enjoy the Class I-II shoals of the Lower Green, and the middle section (the Narrows) is a cornerstone for expert and elite kayakers.

Kayaking: French Broad River

The French Broad is one of the oldest rivers in the world, and offers up a tremendous amount of opportunities for recreation across the course of its journey from the mountains of Western North Carolina to the Tennessee, Ohio, and eventually Mississippi Rivers. From the Class V kayaking of the North Fork near Rosman to the pastoral float through the Biltmore Estate to the town run through Asheville, and finally the excellent intermediate whitewater sections north of Woodfin, the French Broad offers something for everyone to enjoy the water.

Kayaking: Nantahala River

The Nantahala, or “land of the noonday sun,” is a beautiful river corridor close to Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It is in fact one of the best beginner / intermediate kayaking rivers in the world due to its easy roadside access, lively class I-III rapids, fantastic instruction program at Nantahala Outdoor Center, and long paddling season. Nearby Bryson City also has a vibrant mountain town vibe.