• Rafting
  • Gauley River Throwback Overnight


Experience this overnight the first three weekends of Gauley Season:
September 6-9
September 13-16
September 20-23
  • Ages 16+
  • Class III-V
  • Prices start at $289 per person

This is the original Gauley River Overnight, simplified for those looking for a more back to the basics experience. While our Deluxe Gauley River Overnight comes with all the trimmings, the Throwback Gauley River Overnight is reminiscent of the early days of rafting on the Gauley River. This trip has all the rafting, all the fun, and all 120+ rapids that you’ll find on the Deluxe Overnight but comes in at a lower price point AND has a really cool name, too.

You’ll begin your journey on the Upper Gauley, where five class V rapids await your arrival. While you descend the Gauley River Canyon, you’ll be experiencing a remote river trip, with some parts of the river and the surrounding area only being accessible by raft or by kayak. With a later start time than most Gauley River Trips, you’ll spend your time on the river away from the majority of trips, and really get to experience the remoteness of the Gauley River Canyon. But, this isn’t just a wilderness experience, the Upper Gauley is known for being one of the best rafting trips in the world. You’ll take on the “Big Five” class V rapids, steep drops, and big, technical whitewater. You’ll have a riverside lunch partway through the trip so that you’re fully fueled to take on these big rapids!

After day one on the Upper Gauley, you’ll make camp at Mason’s Branch Island, where your guides from the day become chefs, storytellers, and campfire aficionados. All your gear is taken in for you, and we encourage guests to bring a musical instrument. Relax by the fire, enjoy a drink, and retell your stories from the day on the river before retiring to your tent for the night.

On the second day, you’ll have breakfast before heading out on the Lower Gauley. This calmer section of the river has no shortage of huge waves, but the scenery of the Gauley is really what takes center stage. You’ll travel through Canyon Doors, home of arguably the best landscape on the entire Gauley River. Sheer sandstone cliffs line river right, creating a doorway of sorts in the Lower Gauley Canyon. But while this part of the trip isn’t as technical as the Upper Gauley, you’ll still raft through class IV-V rapids, big waves, and huge hits. At the end of the day, you can take home the bragging rights that come from conquering the entire 24 miles of the Gauley River, plus memories to last a lifetime.

Spaces on this trip are very limited.

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About the Gauley River

The Gauley River is the cream of the whitewater crop. It’s characterized by heavy rapids that require tight, technical maneuvering. It’s 24 miles long, but it’s typically split into two sections: the Upper Gauley and the Lower Gauley. Gauley Season brings the year’s biggest whitewater and draws enthusiasts from across the globe each September and October. Over the course of six weeks, water is released from Summersville Lake on a set schedule, making for wild, powerful, BIG rapids that bring thrills you just can’t get anywhere else.

How to Dress for Rafting

What’s Included

Transportation is covered from the resort to the river and back again. We’ll also provide all your rafting equipment (helmet, personal flotation device or PFD, paddle, and boat) and lunch and dinner on day one and breakfast and lunch on day two.

What to Bring

Bring any medication you need, plus sunscreen, sunglasses, and a change of clothes for after your trip, plus a change of clothes for the following day. Bring any toiletries you may want to use. Guides carry small, waterproof bags to stow necessary medications. Depending on the time of year and the weather, you may also want a synthetic layer. If necessary, wetsuits and splash jackets are available for rent. Call us to book those, too.

You'll need to bring all camping equipment, including tent, sleeping bag, and sleeping bag. A checklist will be provided for all recommended and required gear and equipment.

Trip Time

This is a Overnight Trip.
Depending on the day’s water level, you’ll spend between 5-7 hours on the water, plus shuttle time to and from the river. Trip length and intensity vary based on water levels, which change throughout the season.

Your Boat & Guide

Our standard, 16-foot rafts comfortably seat eight rafters and one river guide. Upgrades to 14-foot and 12-foot rafts are available to reserve. Your river guide sits in the back of the raft, where they’ll give instructions for when and how to paddle through each rapid and share their expertise about our rivers and region. Learn more about our guides.

Requirements and Limits

The minimum age for this trip is 16 years old. Our PFDs have a maximum chest capacity of 56 inches. All adventurers on the trip should be able to swim.

Group Reservations

Custom quotes are available for groups of over 15. Call us to learn more!


Our trip leaders and river guides will talk through specific guidelines and requirements on site before you head for the water.

About the Upper Gauley River

The Upper Gauley is the cream of the whitewater crop. It is intimidating, and for good reason. This section of the river packs quite a punch, and may be the most high-adventure trip that most rafters will ever attempt. You can expect an adventure you will never forget with one of our experienced guides.

About the Lower Gauley River

At 13 miles long, the Lower Gauley offers ample stretches of calm, relaxing waters, and Class III-V rapids. Though it's not as technically demanding as the Upper Gauley, this is the most advanced river section for first-time rafters.

Guide Information

On class III-IV and harder trips, a guide sits in every raft and provides instruction at each major rapid and throughout the trip.

Boat Size

Our standard rafts are 16 feet long, comfortably seating 8 guests and a guide. Upgrades to high-adventure smaller rafts are available for experienced rafters for an additional fee.

Time on Water

This is two full days in the river. Depending on the water level, you’ll spend between 5-7 hours on the water plus shuttle time to and from the river.

What’s Provided

We provide transportation from our resort to the river and back again, all rafting equipment (helmet, life jacket, paddle and boat) and lunch and dinner on the first day and breakfast and lunch on the second day.

What to Bring

Bring any medication you need throughout the day, plus sunscreen, sunglasses and a change of clothes to keep at the resort upon your return. Guides carry small waterproof bags to stow necessary medications. The average water temperature on the Gauley River is 50 degrees. You may want to bring a synthetic layer, depending on the time of the year and the weather. Wetsuits and splash jackets are available for rent, as long as booked in advance.

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Due to high traffic volume online booking is currently running slow. For booking help call (855) 379-8738 or see our Trip Planner.