Cooling Off in the New River

As temperatures climb toward triple digits off the mountain, the New River becomes increasingly inviting.  The cool waters welcome visitors with a variety of recreational opportunities.

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Clear, low water levels make for outstanding fishing for Smallmouth Bass.  Public access points can be found at the New River State Park on Kings Creek Road and at the NC Wildlife Resources Commission’s public fishing access area on Farmers Fish Camp Road.  Wading anglers are encouraged to wear personal flotation devices (PFDs) as water depths can vary greatly.  North Carolina and Virginia have a reciprocal fishing license agreement that applies from the confluence of the North and South Forks of the New downstream to the Little River.  Fishing regulations from North Carolina can be found here and Virginia’s here.

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Canoeing, kayaking and tubing offer a sure way to cool off on a hot day.  Rentals and shuttles are available at Rivercamp USA, the New River Campground, and Dusty Trails Outfitters. They can tailor trips around skill levels and/or time restrictions.  PFDs are required on canoes and kayaks.  Young boaters under age 13 must wear a properly sized PFD while afloat.

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One the more unique opportunities along the river is the canoe access campground that is part of the New River State Park.  This allows paddlers a chance to get away from the crowds and enjoy the solitude of the river in a quiet setting.

So, whether it is paddling, wading, floating or camping, the New River in Alleghany County has something for everyone.