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Tennessee whitewater, Watauga

Watauga Johnson county, Guys Ford Bridge to Watauga Lake section whitewater kayaking, rafting, and paddling information.


CLASS IV-V     4.9 miles
  The put-in is not too far from Boone, if you're not familiar with the area there's a road map further down the page. If you've been whitewater rafting and kayaking outside Tennessee you might find the rivers here a bit more challenging, so better not forget that a lot of the rivers here are not suitable for beginners. The natural beauty of Watauga / Johnson County and the water flowing gracefully down Watauga make the trip here worthwhile.
    You can pitch a tent or park your RV at a nearby campground. Lodging is available near the river, but if you donít have reservations you might end up sleeping in your car. On this section you do get some distance, suitable
for an afternoon trip. No matter if you're whitewater rafting or kayaking in this general area you'll find lots of paddling spots. There are plenty of other stretches in this river system that can be paddled as well. Getting your paddling muscles activated and a chance to spend some time outdoors are great attractions for lots of people. The Guys Ford Bridge to Watauga Lake stretch of Watauga in Tennessee is 4.9 miles long and is according to  
American Whitewater a class IV-V section of whitewater.

Briefly about the general area:
Roan Mountain State Park is a pleasant place to check out on a gorgeous day, and you can go for a hike on the Little Pond Mountain Trail. There are plenty of folks from Sugar Grove here at Watauga, and don't leave Watauga without first going for a hike along the Iron Mountain Trail. At this river you will never have a bad time. The best way to spend a winter day is on the slopes of close by Ski Beech, and naturally, A visit to Keller Gap is always fun. Summertime brings highs in the 80's to Watauga.

Watauga, Guys Ford Bridge to Watauga Lake road map
Printable road map with the put-in and take-out locations clearly marked.


Detailed Map

Stats for this river stretch

Local weather forecast

These outdoors activities are available near Watauga.
 Whitewater Near Watauga:
Watauga, Watauga / Johnson County, 2 miles away
      Class IV-V - 4.9 miles long (Guys Ford Bridge to Watauga Lake)
Watauga River, Watauga County, 2 miles away
      Class IV-V - 4.9 miles long (Guys Ford Bridge to Watauga Lake)
Elk River, Carter County, 5 miles away
      Class II-III - 4.3 miles long (Route 2520 to US 321 bridge Close to Elk Mills)
Watauga River, Watauga County, 6 miles away
      Class II-III - 4 miles long (US Route 321 Bridge to Route 1200)
Elk River, Avery (NC)/Carter (TN) County, 6 miles away
      Class IV-V(V+) - 4.8 miles long (Route 130 to bridge above Sone Mtn Church Tennessee)
Elk River, Carter and Avery County, 6 miles away
      Class IV-V - 5 miles long (Big Falls to Poga Rd)
Elk River, Avery County, 6 miles away
      Class IV-V - 8.4 miles long (Route 1326 to Route 1305)
Whitewater Outfitter - High Mountain Expeditions, Avery County, 10 miles away
      Whitewater outfitter
Doe River, Carter County, 12 miles away
      Class II-III - 4.6 miles long (Crabtree to Blevins Bridge on Bear Gauge Road)
Watauga River, Watauga County, 13 miles away
      Class I-II - 12 miles long (North Carolina Route 105 Bridge to US Route 321 Bridge)
 Ski Areas Near Watauga:
Ski Beech, North Carolina , 6 miles away, 830 foot drop, 10 lifts, 15 runs
Sugar Mountain, North Carolina , 9 miles away, 1200 foot drop, 8 lifts, 20 runs
Hawksnest, North Carolina , 10 miles away, 619 foot drop, 4 lifts, 12 runs
Appalachian Mountain, North Carolina , 18 miles away, 365 foot drop, 5 lifts, 9 runs
Wolf Ridge, North Carolina , 45 miles away, 700 foot drop, 5 lifts, 20 runs
Cataloochee, North Carolina , 91 miles away, 740 foot drop, 4 lifts, 10 runs
Winterplace, West Virginia , 91 miles away, 603 foot drop, 9 lifts, 27 runs
 Marinas Near Watauga:
Pioneer Landing Campground, Butler , 3 miles away
Pappy's Marina and Campground, Butler , 7 miles away
Lakeshore Marina, Hampton , 13 miles away
Fish Springs Marina, Hampton , 18 miles away
Lake View Dock, Bristol , 18 miles away
 Hotels Near Watauga:
Jackalope's Mountain Lodge, Banner Elk , 5 miles away
Banner Haven Bed And Breakfast, Banner Elk , 7 miles away
Best Western Mountain Lodge At Banner Elk, Banner Elk , 8 miles away
Blue Ridge Village, Banner Elk , 10 miles away
Highland Hills Cabins, Boone , 15 miles away
 Campgrounds Near Watauga:
Mountaineer Falls Shelter - Appalachian Trail, Elk Park, 6 miles away
Grandfather Campground and Cabins, Banner Elk, 8 miles away
Pappy's Marina and Campground, Butler, 8 miles away
 Trails Near Watauga:
Little Pond Mountain Trail, Carter , 10 miles away
Iron Mountain Trail, Johnson , 11 miles away
Laurel Fork Trail, Carter , 12 miles away
Laurel Fork Trail, Carter , 12 miles away
Pond Mountain Trail, Carter , 12 miles away
 Public Lands Near Watauga:
Blue Ridge Parkway, Asheville - NC , 59 miles away
Roan Mountain State Park, Tennessee , 13 miles away
Sycamore Shoals State Park, Tennessee , 16 miles away
Cherokee National Forest, Tennessee , 24 miles away
 Golf Courses Near Watauga:
Wilderness Trail, Banner Elk , 7 miles away
Diamond Creek, Banner Elk , 8 miles away
Sugar Mountain Golf Club, Sugar Mountain , 9 miles away
 Lakes Near Watauga
Wildcat Lake, Avery , 8 miles away
Watauga Lake, Carter , 15 miles away
South Holston Lake, Sullivan , 18 miles away

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Some content, including Reach Name, Class, Coordinates, and Length, comes from American Whitewater with permission.