One of the best ways to get out and see the river is to go kayaking!

There are several places where you can go kayaking. One of these locations is near the bottom of Summersville Lake, which is great for beginners. You can also kayak on the New River which has two sections: a lower section, and an upper section. The lower section is good for beginners, while the upper sections are good for more experienced kayakers (and have class III+ rapids).

There are several different businesses around that offer kayaking tours so you should be able to find something that fits your needs.


Paddleboarding is a fun and easy way to get some exercise and enjoy the hot summer sun! It’s not just for those who live in California, though: paddleboarding can be a great activity in West Virginia too. With all this talk of the negative effects of technology on our bodies, it’s nice to know that there are still plenty of ways to have fun outside. Paddleboarding is an activity that is both safe and accessible: you don’t have to be super fit or have experience with sports to enjoy it. There are lots of classes that teach people how to paddleboard. Once you pick up the skills, you’re free! You can go out any time you want and explore different areas in Hico.


Looking to cool off with a little river tubing? Hico is the perfect place to start! The New River and the Gauley River are both within close proximity of town, so you don’t have far to go before you can hop into the water.

For families looking for a nature trip that doesn’t involve too much struggle, the New River is your best bet. With an average gradient of 19 feet per mile, it has some steep rises but overall remains fairly mild in difficulty, making it perfect for kids or people who want to try rafting without going all-in on crazy rapids. The river runs through the mountain gorge all year round, so if you happen to come in the winter (which we highly recommend—more on that later), there will still be plenty of time for tubing and other fun activities!

If you’re more interested in getting your adrenaline pumping than having leisurely fun with your family and friends, then look no further than the Gauley River. As one of only two class five rivers in West Virginia (next stop: Class VI), this river provides hours of thrills and adventure as you fight waves and dodge rocks along its path.

Jet Boats

If you’re the type of person who loves action and going fast, jet boat rides are for you. These powerful vessels can travel up to 50 mph on water and take you to see lots of cool things like the New River Gorge Bridge, Wild and Wonderful West Virginia signs, Mystery Hole, and more. A ride lasts about an hour depending on the boat captain’s schedule. Rides will also pause at certain points for photo ops or to explore areas of interest.

Reservations are recommended but not required. The cost per person is $25 for adults, $15 for children 12 years old and younger.


If you’re looking to spend the day outdoors, check out these hiking trails.


While the New River Gorge is a great place for whitewater rafting and kayaking, it also has excellent rock climbing. Many of the best crags in the area are within walking distance of each other, making it easy to climb many routes in just one day. However, you need some prior experience before you can climb here; if you don’t have any, you’ll want to find lessons and a guide before coming out.

Fortunately, there are several good companies in or near Fayetteville that can get you on your way. You should also be able to rent all the gear that you need from them as well.

The New River Gorge Bridge is another fantastic place to climb—and possibly even bungee jump! Climb up a line underneath the bridge (on which over 100 climbers are allowed per day) and take an enormous leap off its side into thin air!

Mountain Biking

Mountain biking is the fastest growing sport in the nation, and it can be a lot of fun. You can ride bike trails or connect to existing roads, which route you through various terrain alongside carefully maintained dirt and paved paths. In addition to creating a wonderful workout, mountain biking is great for getting in shape—it utilizes all kinds of muscle groups, from legs to arms to back muscles. With summer just around the corner and hottest days ahead, you should really put that road bike away and start learning how to ride a mountain bike instead.

Zip Lining

Zip lining is the quickest way to get across the gorge. The longest and highest zip line in North America crosses over the New River Gorge Bridge, where you can experience incredible views and cross from one side of the bridge to the other at up to 75 miles per hour.

The best place for bird’s eye views is Adventures on the Gorge: they offer a number of packages with different combinations of ziplines ranging in distance, speed and height! A zip line adventure will last between three hours (for two lines) and six hours (for four lines), making this an ideal activity for a day when you want a full experience but also want to leave time for other activities. It costs $79-$129 per person depending on how many lines you go on, plus they offer combo packages with whitewater rafting if that’s something you’re interested in!


swimming! There are lots of places to go swimming around here, including rivers, pools and lakes. If you have a car, you can also drive to the ocean or a beach and go swimming there! For the best results, make sure you’re wearing a swimsuit and that it’s not too cold out.


If you’re looking for your next angling adventure, you can find plenty of great spots to drop a line in the Hico area. The region is home to some of West Virginia’s finest fishing opportunities, with brook and brown trout in the Elk River, as well as rock bass, walleye and smallmouth bass.

The Elk River offers some excellent public access points where visitors can enjoy wade-fishing, kayak/canoe fishing or bank-fishing from shore. The river is stocked with trout every two weeks from March through May each year by the state Division of Natural Resources (DNR), making it one of the most popular spots for fly-fishing enthusiasts looking to catch rainbow and brown trout during their spawning season.

Bonus: Bridgewalk

One of the many unusual sights to be found in Hico is a long, wooden catwalk that runs beneath the New River Gorge Bridge. This is possibly one of the most unique views you’ll find in West Virginia. If you’d like to cross the bridge on foot and explore the area from a different perspective, this is a must-see experience during your visit!

There are several things to keep in mind before taking part in this excursion. First, it’s a good idea to go on a clear day so you can enjoy all of the great views. It’s also recommended that you wear comfortable shoes since it’s about an hour-long walk each way (or you can take advantage of the shuttle service). For those who like adventure, this is sure to be an unforgettable experience!

Hico is a great place to stay if you want to go adventuring.

Hico is a great place to stay if you want to go adventuring. It’s an easy drive from the New River Gorge where you can hike, bike, white water raft and more! You can also travel 15 minutes in the other direction to visit Hawks Nest State Park or visit the Bluestone Dam and Lake.

The town itself boasts many local businesses and restaurants as well as friendly people. Hico is a great place to stay for any adventure or just relax at Ray’s Campground.

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