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Paddlesports Schools:

Rocky Mountain Outdoor Center
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Salida, CO

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Whitewater Kayaking, Rafting, Rock Climbing, & Mountain Biking: Guided Tours and Professional Instruction. Choose your own a (more...)

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Otter Bar Lodge Kayak School
Located in:
Forks of Salmon, CA

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Otter Bar offers all skill levels of whitewater kayak instruction based out of our wilderness lodge on California's pristine Salmo (more...)

Paddlesports Schools:

Great Northern Whitewater Resort/Glacier River School
Located in:
West Glacier, MT

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River/Guide school Great Northern Resort has a 36 year history of providing whitewater and fishing trips on the Flathead River in (more...)

Paddlesports Shops:

Tumalo Creek Kayak & Canoe
Located in:
Bend, OR

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Upper Gauley Whitewater Kayaking Trip on the Gauley River

Insignificant Rapid at 3,000 cfs
Sweets Falls at 3,000 cfs Iron Ring Rapid (helmet cam) at 3,000 cfs Lost Paddle Rapid (helmet cam) at 3,000 cfs Top of Pillow Rock Rapid (helmet cam) at 3,000 cfs Insignificant Rapid (helmet cam) at 3,000 cfs

Upper Gauley Info
Use this information at your own risk. See our legal notices.
Put In:  Summersville Dam
Take Out:  Panther Mountain
Difficulty:  Class IV , Class V
Gradient:  28 ft/mi
Run Length:  17 miles
Flow Information (phone):  304-529-5127, recorded message with release in cfs
Good Level:  2200-3000 cfs, most difficult at approx. 1100 cfs.
Season Comments:  May, June, July, August, September
Primary Season:  Fall drawdown releases occur for six weeks in Sept
Permit:  No permits currently required.
Character/Similar To:  This is big, technical class IV water with class V consequences. Similar to the New River Gorge at 3 feet and many western runs such as the Royal Gorge on the Arkansas River.
Hazards:  Many undercuts all over the river.
Water Craft:  kayak,wwcan,raft
Land Ownership:  Most of the land along the banks of the river is considered public.
Wilderness:  Yes, but very crowded with commercial and private boaters during the fall releases.
Camping on River:  Yes, small beaches and potential small camps along the river. The private access points used by many commercial outfitters can support large camps. Permission must be received prior to use.
Location:  In the Mid-Atlantic (WV), 70 miles southeast of Charleston, WV
Shuttle Logistics:  Put-in: Turn west off of US 19 onto WV 129 which is 6 miles south of Summerville. Cross the top of Summersville Dam and follow the signs to the base of the dam.

Take-out: Continue west on WV 129 and turn left onto Panther Mountain
Road. A 3/4 mi path to the river is on the left after about 4 mi. During
off-season you can continue to drive into the raft companies property right on the river at Mason Branch.

One way shuttle time estimate: 30 minutes

Towns near Upper Gauley Kayaking

Beckley West Virginia
Charleston West Virginia
Davis West Virginia
Fayetteville West Virginia
Harpers Ferry West Virginia
Hico West Virginia
Hinton West Virginia
Lewisburg West Virginia
Oak Hill West Virginia
Summersville West Virginia

Other Resources

Southeastern Kayak Clubs
  • Burned Out Canoe Club
  • West Virginia Wildwater Association