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Fall Adventures in the New River Gorge


Fall in the New River Gorge is one of the best times to adventure in our region. The changing leaves make for more stunning views, and the cooler temperatures make some adventures in the outdoors even more enjoyable. Here’s our top 5 favorite things to do in the New River Gorge during the fall. 

Fall adventures on the Upper Gauley River with ACE Adventure Resort in West Virginia.

  1. Raft the Gauley RiverGauley Season only happens once a year, for six weekends during September and October, so of course rafting the Gauley is number one on our list. Experience one of the top rafting trips in the world on the Upper Gauley, with 5 class V rapids in a totally undeveloped, backcountry world. Or, check out the tamer Lower Gauley River, which boasts some of the best scenery in all of West Virginia (and maybe even the world?!). Opt for an overnight trip and spend the night camping under the stars, with the sounds of the river lulling you to sleep. 
  2. Zipline with a View: You may be an avid leaf peeper-but have you ever checked out the changing leaves from high above the forest floor? ACE’s 9 zipline and 2 sky bridge zipline course meanders right along the New River Gorge, making it the only zipline course with views of the New River! You’ll experience high flying thrills, all while taking in the scenery of Appalachia’s deciduous trees. Pro-tip: bring a camera!
  3. Raft the New River Gorge: While summertime in West Virginia is primetime New River Season, don’t miss out on rafting this classic stretch during the fall! The 1,000 foot canyon lights up in a stunning display of changing colors every fall, and with fewer people rafting in the fall, you’ll experience a more secluded adventure. Don’t miss: Bridge Day! The third Saturday of October, the New River Gorge Bridge shuts down to vehicular traffic, and thousands of people watch as BASE jumpers from around the world jump 876 into the canyon below. We think the best vantage point to watch the spectacle is from a raft on a Lower New River Trip.
  4. Rock Climb: The New River Gorge is well known for its world-class rock climbs, and there is no better time to visit The Gorge for climbing than the fall. Cooler temperatures mean the friction between the rock and your hands is even better, and you can get to sending (climber jargon for successfully completing a climb). New to the sport? Climb on ACE’s property on a full or half day trip. Experienced or want to dive right in? ACE offers full day trips in the New River Gorge Proper, where you’ll climb some of the world famous routes the area is known for.
  5. Mountain Bike: ACE is home to miles of mountain bike trails, which you can take on with a guided mountain bike trip, or by renting a bike from our Welcome Center and hitting the trails on your own (don’t forget to grab a map, too!). The New River Gorge has even more trails, so you could spend an entire week riding and still not experience them all! Drier conditions in the fall mean that trails are in prime condition for you to crush the single track. And, the cooler air temperatures mean you’ll sweat less (maybe) making your ride more Instagram worthy.


Experience fall in The New River Gorge. A region amplified by dramatic leaf changes, crisp morning air, and adrenaline pumping adventure. 

BY aceteam

Bringing you all the latest whitewater rafting, adventure, and all things ACE from the New River Gorge of West Virginia for over 40 years.