Rafting the Nantahala

July 14, 2017

This was the first time my sons and I tried out duckies (inflatable kayaks). Thousands of people flock to NOC on a warm summer day to kayak or raft down the river. The shimmering Nantahala River offers whitewater rafting through rapids that are mild but exciting. 

Nantahala rafting features eight miles of practice on easy Class II rapids before splashing through the exciting Class III whitewater of Nantahala Falls. Both guided and self-guided trips are available - either on rafts or ducks. Miss the big crowds in May, September and October (great way to see fall color!)

Camping at Appletree Group Campground in Topton, NC. Each site has its own picnic shelter, outdoor group gathering area with a fire ring and lantern posts, restroom with flush toilets, water hydrant, designated parking area and a grassy field for tents and activities. The campground offers a shower house.

Hike near the campground on more than 20 miles of interconnecting loops. Nearby, catch a section of the long-distance Bartram National Recreation Trail, named for William Bartram, an American naturalist noted for his botanical expeditions in the late 1700s.

Avid anglers can cast their lines for rainbow, brown and native brook trout that live in the cold mountain streams near the campground. State fishing regulations apply, and licenses are required for fishing in national forest streams. Nantahala Lake is 10 minutes away. If you enjoy the thrill of whitewater rafting, visit the Nantahala Outdoor Center.

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