Whitewater Rafting in the Great Smoky Mountains: A First-Timer’s Perspective

Vickie and her family rafting on the Pigeon River with Big Creek Expeditions

The Mckenzie family came whitewater rafting with Big Creek Expeditions in August of 2019. Read below to hear Vickie’s perspective, in her own words, on her first time rafting experience:

“My kids are very adventurous. I’m not sure where they get that from. I’m a self proclaimed beach bum that would sit and watch ocean waves all day given the chance. My husband enjoys the quietness of a evening in the woods in a tree stand. We live on a cattle farm about an hour from Myrtle Beach and usually take one trip a year to the mountains. 
This year however, after my daughter learned about white water rafting from her friend, we took 2 trips. Our winter trip is always busy with skiing, snow tubing and just enjoying the beauty of the mountains, so this trip was going to be a little different. We set to find a white water rafting trip that would satisfy my two adventure seekers. We ended up booking a trip with Big Creek Expeditions. 
The trip was amazing. Once we jumped in the raft and started down the river it was magical. The rapids were fun, the guide was awesome and our adventure was made better by all the interesting information we learned about the river and the area. My children laughed and giggled all the way down the river. As a mother of these two, I was a little nervous about possible danger, but as we started out I was completely at peace with the experience and knowledge of our guide. Not once was I worried. 
We also took advantage of the knowledge our guide had for the area. She told us of local places to hike, ride horses, swim and watch elk. We took advantage of most of her suggestions but we ran out of time. 
Over all my children enjoyed their very first rafting trip, they are asking to go back. And I’m sure we will. We loved every minute of it.  We have also discovered there is even more to do in the mountains in the summer than the winter, so now we will be making 2 trips each year and somehow soaking up all the nature we can during each trip. “
Vickie Mckenzie, Andrews, SC

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