No experience is necessary, so get ready to rock the rapids! With exciting class-III and -IV rapids, whitewater rafting in Tennessee begins right here, in Gatlinburg.
With several regional rivers just minutes away, Gatlinburg is a great place for whitewater rafting! Whether you’ve never been before or you’re an experienced rafter, Gatlinburg has the whitewater rafting adventure for you!
Splashdown on the Big Pigeon
There’s nothing quite as exhilarating as a ride on an untamed river. The Big Pigeon and several other regional rivers are minutes away, and downtown Gatlinburg rafting outfitters can help you book an expedition and make sure you get all the gear you need.
On the Big Pigeon, there are 12 Class-III and three Class-IV rapids. Check out these names: “Too Late,” “Vegamatic,” “Razor Blade,” “After Shave” and “Lost Guide.” Put your helmet on!
The Big Pigeon River gushes near Great Smoky Mountain National Park and the Cherokee National Forest. There’s no view of the mountains like that from the seat of a bouncing raft in whitewater. No experience is necessary, but rafters do need to be at least eight years old or weigh at least 70 pounds.
Choose your Gatlinburg rafting adventure: wild or mild
The upper portion of the Pigeon River is for the adventurous, and the lower section is more of a relaxed float-trip. Check with one of the companies below to see what’s best for you and your group. Either way, you’re sure to enjoy a fun-filled ride through one of the most scenic Tennessee national parks.
More about the Pigeon River
The Pigeon River is dam-controlled, with scheduled water releases from Memorial Day through Labor Day, on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. The Pigeon River of western North Carolina and east Tennessee forms above Canton, North Carolina. Below this, it flows roughly parallel to Interstate 40 for many miles and is impounded by Walters Dam, belonging to Progress Energy of Waterville, before entering Tennessee. From there, it flows into the French Broad River.
Get wet and wild in Gatlinburg with some of the best whitewater rafting in Tennessee!