your paddlesports destination

New River in Virginia

Trip Overview

The New River Begins in western North Carolina and winds through the Appalachian mountains into south western Virginia. It is in a constant shallow decent with small rock ledges crossing the river and easy safe stopping at most times. Many beautiful places to camp or stop.

The river is said to be the oldest river in America and the second oldest in the world. the first being the Nile, according to the history since the last ice age. It flows from North Carolina to Virginia, then west to West Virginia through the New River Gorge, a favorite white water paddling and rafting destination, joining the Canowa River and continuing through Charleston WV and a busy barge traffic area, and some miles of slower moving water and locks and lifts joining the Ohio River and paddling past Cincinnati OH and then on to the great Mississippi River where of course you would end up in New Orleans LA and the Gulf of Mexico.

It would take many weeks good provisions, a hardy pair to make a trip of that magnitude, I can say I did it, Ha Ha from the satellites of Google Earth, but really did paddle it in some areas close to my home in Pulaski VA to the New River Gorge, I treat it like some people treat walking the Appalachian Trail, where they buy a map and walk a section and highlight it on the map a little at a time. I'm real lucky, my work takes me all over the country, and I take my Kayaks every place I go. Most recently, the Susquehanna River at Wilkes Barre PA

I always tell every one: Never take a trip even for an hour with out taking food and water provisions along, always know where you are going and what you expect to find round the next bend in the river, take a cell phone and be able to contact emergency services if necessary. And always wear you life belt. Be aware you may encounter animals such as bears when traveling through the Blue Ridge and Appalachian Mountains, protection from four and two legged types is advisable.

Thanks for reading my report and I hope you have a great time paddling.


There are many towns and built up areas along the NRV as it flows through many National Forests, good research will provide you with places to stop, stay in motels, shop visit national treasures or be in the wildest wilderness you can imagine, many places to start and stop your trip.


These rivers are the property of the people of the United States, there should be no fees, unless you choose a group trip with a guide or stay in a camping area of a state park or national forest. I personally try to avoid these pay-for kind of situations. but if you are an RV'er you will be used to it.


The New River may be accessed from many different highways

I-77 NC to VA to WV to I-64 west and along I-81 North in VA


The US Dept of the Interior can recommend more information than I; I am a wild spirit and devil may care explorer.


There are many books written and maps drawn covering this river valley, I am partial to Google Earths Satellite photos where I like to: fly to, any place on earth, Amazon books would be a great place to find books on this region.

  • Skill Level: Advanced
  • Water Type: River/Creek (Up to Class II)
  • Group Rates: No

Locations on this Trip