5 Reasons You Should Take a Spring Rafting Trip

Crowds amass in the Gorge every summer to raft, but the best kept secret of the river runners is the spring season. Head down before it gets too busy to get a host of springtime perks, including:

Low prices

If you want one of the best runs for one of the best rates, there's no question: spring is the best time to go big for less. Because it's less busy than the summer rush, you can get off-season pricing on the trip and the entire stay. But the run is actually one of the most thrilling of the year because you get:

The Biggest Waves

Huge walls of water are swelling up and pounding the riverbed during the springtime frenzy. The Lower New becomes a heart-racing ride, comparable to the Gauley's world-renowned waves, but with fewer technical challenges so even beginners can enjoy it.

Smaller Crowds

While hundreds of boats flood the river in the summertime, holding up the lines to ride a wave, it's straight-through sailing in the springtime. It makes it more worthwhile to fight the push of the current back up to the nearest hole for an extra rodeo-style rafting surf, knowing you won't be waiting in a long line for the river to spit out the rest of the boats, first.

Beauty in Bloom

Floating through the Gorge in spring, you get a front-row seat as the forest explodes with life and vibrance to match the booming waves. Red, violet and sunshiny wildflowers burst out of the riverside greenery. The critters start to stir after the winter lull, and race through the grass and treetops carelessly.

Cool temperatures

Everybody loves the sunshine, but if it beats down on you the whole day while you raft, it takes its toll.  It's easy to bundle up in preparation of a chill, but hard to cool down any further in the heat when you're in a PFD, even if you're stripped to your bathing suit otherwise. The breeze and cool water should be a light refreshment, not a saving grace from a scorching sun.

Which season do you like best for rafting?