OAK HILL, WV (WVNS) — Whitewater rafting was officially allowed to resume on Thursday, May 21, 2020, but heavy rains caused rafters to change course.
Haynes Mansfield is the Director of Marketing at ACE Adventure Resort. He said guides woke up Friday morning to the New River at 17 feet and climbing.
Mansfield said the cutoff to run a commercial trip is 12 feet. The higher the water, the faster it moves. Mansfield said typically, when the New River is too high, they take trips down the Lower Gauley river instead.
“When you get to 12 feet and over on the New River Gorge, or other high water levels on other rivers, when you fall out of that raft you accelerate really quickly, and it can be very difficult to get somebody back in. So we make sure to keep folks close to the raft and we certainly don’t venture out when they’re moving that quickly,” Mansfield said.
Normal levels for this time of year are seven to ten feet. Despite conditions, Mansfield said ACE ran a two boat trip Friday and they will have several rafts out this weekend.