On the Water

Whether your passion requires a paddle, pole, or swimsuit, Tucker County’s waterways will quench your thirst for adventure. Make your best summer memories rafting, tubing, canoeing, kayaking or standup paddleboarding. The Cheat, Dry Fork and Blackwater Rivers offer everything from rushing whitewater excitement to gentle pools perfect for some personal reflection time.

The Cheat River is one of the largest un-dammed watersheds east of the Mississippi River, making for a natural aquatic playground for fishing, boating, swimming and other paddle sports.

Parsons is home to the Cheat River Water Trail where there are several public put-ins/take-outs along the dynamic Cheat River. The water trail is intended for inner-tubers, canoeist, fishermen, and kayakers. Unless you are familiar with river shuttles and own your own equipment, head to Blackwater Outdoor Adventures or Patriots 4 outfitter located along the Cheat River Water Trail for all your needs.

Paddle Sports

Your water adventure can be mild, wild, or anything in between. Experience the excitement of the Cheat or Dry Fork rivers with our local whitewater rafting outfitter. Admire the natural beauty along the Cheat River Canyon and the Cheat River Trail. Or enjoy the reflective solitude by kayak, in a canoe, or atop a stand up paddleboard. For guided paddling, book a trip with Appalachian Expeditions — the canoe trips feature mostly flatwater with occasional shallow riffles. 

Great for Kids

The Cheat River is perfect for children of all ages and enthusiastic beginners. Slowly work your way into the river lifestyle with mild tubing float trips or as a canoe passenger learning the ropes of traveling by paddle. Already experienced? Whitewater raft and ducky trips on the Cheat Narrows will tap into the adrenaline of every teen. Appalachian Expeditions offers youth expeditions focused on outdoor learning, canoeing and camping. A day on the river is hard to beat for unplugged, reconnecting family bonding time.

Canoe and Kayak Launch on the Blackwater River

The Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge has installed an ADA compliant canoe and kayak boat launch on the upper stretches of the Blackwater River. This is a work in progress, with the parking lot and ADA trail accessibility to the boat launch itself to be completed in 2019. Access the meandering upper headwaters upstream or class I-II whitewater and trout habitat downstream.

Whitewater Rafting

Thrills on the Cheat and Dry Fork Rivers begin in early spring with “high water” rushing from high atop the Allegheny Mountains. As summer approaches, typical water levels on the class II and III Cheat River Narrows is truly a fun experience for all. Between rapids swim in deep water holes or launch oneself off everyone’s favorite jump rock. Blackwater Outdoor Adventures is the sole outfitter in Tucker County that offers guided whitewater trips.

Rafting, Kayaking and Watersports in Canaan Valley