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Yadkin River in North Carolina

Trip Overview

Our group of 9 started our adventure at 6:30 a.m. by offloading our kayaks at the US-64 bridge in western Davidson County, and driving our pickup vehicles 8 miles to the NC-801 boat ramp in Yadkin County. After a night of heavy rain, the river was flowing well. We launched at 7:00 a.m. Our 3 hour float covered roughly 10 miles of river. Even though the river was a mocha-brown color, it was a great trip. Fish were jumping throughout, and we also saw multiple cranes, ducks, and even a bald eagle at the midway point. While you can paddle if you want to, the river does most of the work for you. Because the water was up and flowing well, we were even treated to 3 sections of rapids. Very minor, maybe a class 1, but a nice bumpy interlude during our paddle. This is a pretty safe river, and what made it fun with our group was the fact you could float and enjoy others company, or lag behind a bit or pull ahead a bit and enjoy the solitude. Heavy foliage along both sides of the river make it feel like you're a thousand miles from civilization. If you can overlook the muddy water, this is a fun deal. I highly recommend it.


The launch point on US-64 at the bridge has unsecure gravel parking and no facilities. You'll need to carry your kayaks about 150 yards to the river's edge from the parking area. The 801 boat ramp has no facilities as well, but you can back your vehicle right up the ramp, with very little carrying from the water.




Out of Lexington, NC, take US-64 west for about 7 miles. Just after Tarheel-Q, pull off the the left at the gravel lot by the bridge. To take your vehicles to the take-out point, continue over the bride on US-64 West for about 3 miles, turn left onto NC-801, go about three miles, and the road to the 801 boat ramp is on the left, about 3/4 of a mile after you pass over Dutchman's Creek.



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

Locations on this Trip