North Carolina Whitewater Rafting Trips

Whitewater Rafting in North Carolina

In the North Carolina mountains, go whitewater rafting, tubing, kayaking in Banner Elk on the Watauga River. Near Bryson City, you can whitewater raft on the Nantahala River and go tubing in Cherokee. Asheville and nearby Hot Springs offer whitewater rafting on the French Broad River. In Graham County, go rafting on the Cheoah River..

In the Piedmont, you can go whitewater rafting at the US National Whitewater center at Charlotte where there are multi channel areas and a flatwater area for canoeing and kayaking. Go kayaking on the Roanoke river near Scotland Neck in Halifax county.

A Beginners Guide to White Water Rafting

Extreme sports is the generic term used for sports that test the limits and dangers of "traditional" sports.

In white water rafting, a raft is used to travel through rough water. There is a vast range of white water rafting locations, with each presenting a different challenge. Rivers are divided into groups, based on an internationally-recognized classification system. Class 1 rivers are suitable for beginners, although they may have small rough patches, requiring some maneuvering. Class 2 rivers, suitable for novices, are straightforward and easy to navigate. Class 3 waters require greater skill for significant maneuvering and are suitable for intermediates. Class 4 rivers should be left to advanced rafters. Although generally predictable, such waters tend to have sizeable waves and numerous rocks, requiring continual sharp maneuvers. Class 5 rapids are powerful, dangerous waters, suitable only for experts. Their large waves, numerous rocks and other hazards, often including large drops, require precise control. Class 6 rapids are considered so dangerous that they are effectively impassable with any reliable safety. With massive white water, large rocks and hazards, along with drops that will destroy most rafting equipment, these are definitely the province of the most daring extreme sports enthusiasts.

Essential equipment required for white water rafting includes a life jacket, helmet and wetsuit. These are generally supplied by the company organizing the rafting trip and participants should wear comfortable clothing along with sturdy footwear. Participants must remember that any form of white water rafting is an extreme sport and carries some element of risk. Safety is of paramount importance and the appropriate precautions will allow repeated enjoyment of the sport. Rafters should ensure that they have all the proper safety equipment and that it is worn at ALL times when in or near the water. They should also ensure that their level of proficiency is suitable for the difficulty of the course and the prevailing weather conditions. Those embarking on an organized trip, accompanied by an instructor, should ensure that such an instructor is fully-qualified. Before setting out, rafters must be aware of the appropriate reaction to potential hazards, such as rocks and walls. No stretch of water should be attempted unless a clear path through is visible. White water rafting alone is extremely foolhardy and rafters should advise friends or family of their intended route, anticipated time of return and a contact in case of emergency. Rafting in out-of-the-way rivers should be approached with extreme caution. It is vital that the river is accessible to emergency services along the length of the intended route. Furthermore, in the case of equipment failure or being unshipped from the raft, paddlers need to be able to reach the shore and find a way out to safety. Form the perspective of general health, rafters need to be aware that they may experience both very hot and very cold conditions and should be aware of the early signs of heat exhaustion, dehydration and hypothermia and how to deal with such conditions. A first aid kit should always be carried and rafters conversant with its use.

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