Call (888) 426-7238
Cell (828) 450-4663
35 Little Pine Rd, Marshall, NC 28753

Trip Types

Full Day Trip

The full day trip is about eight and a half miles. We run the same five mile stretch of river as the half day trip, stop and have a beach side, picnic style lunch, and then instead of stopping after five miles, we keep going on to Hot Springs, NC. This extra three and a half miles takes us on a journey through beautiful and remote Pisgah National Forrest, past the ghost town of Runion, and through the classic class IV Frank Bells Rapid.

Half Day Trip With Lunch

This white water rafting trip travels the same section of the French Broad River as the Half-Day Whitewater Trip. The pace for the lunch trip allows more time on the river and includes a stop along the way for lunch. The lunch is a fresh deli / picnic style and is served riverside. The time frame for this trip is the same as the half day trip with about an hour (depends on trip size) added for lunch and a more leisurely pace. Please let us know if you are under any time constraints.

Afternoon Half Day Trip

The afternoon half day trip runs the same five mile stretch of class I-III whitewater as the morning half day with lunch trip. We just don't have lunch. We do, however, have a little snack waiting for us when we reach the take out.

Calm Water Trip

Morning Half Day Trip, No Lunch

This is the same trip as the afternoon Half Day Trip.

WHAT OUR GUESTS SAY

A Top-Notch Rafting Experience, Courtesy of a Top-Notch Outfit"


Yesterday I donned my Blue Heron t-shirt and recalled the delightful rafting experience I enjoyed there with my daughter and (very likely) future son-in-law. It occurred a year ago, almost to the day. I don't usually write reviews like this, but promised myself I would post something this time. It's taken me a year - but they earned it. Although the details aren't as fresh in my memory now as they were then, I recall that we had a rafting expedition that was perfectly suited to our group's level of inexperience. I remember, too, thinking that the price was very reasonable. It was just the right level of excitement: there were plenty of genuine thrills, but we weren't all-out terrified. There were opportunities for pictures, and we were provided with snacks. At one point, we stopped along the shore and were given the opportunity to leap into the river from a bluff - that was a hoot! If I recall, Laura was our guide. She was very knowledgeable, and during the less rollicking moments of our trip, she shared all kinds of information and lore about the river, the folks who lived along it, and various interesting rafting expeditions over the years. That was fascinating. When I asked her about the history of the company, and about the other companies in the area, she displayed a level of class that is, sadly, not so common these days: while singing the praises of her Blue Heron colleagues, she had only nice things to say about her competitors. I had a preview of that kind of classy attitude before the trip got started: we could buy some dive slippers or water shoes - but they also had dozens of pairs of used shoes - sneakers and such - that previous patrons had left, which we could pick from at no charge. I opted to buy some new slippers, which I have since used repeatedly, but giving customers that option, even though it might mean reduced profits, really resonated with me. It kind of reminded me of that scene in "Miracle at 34th Street" - where the department store Santa... well, you'd have to see the movie. In sum, the trip was thrilling and fascinating, led by a seasoned, classy guide, with a company that keeps costs reasonable. I will return to Asheville soon, and I wouldn't raft with anyone else.

“Awesome day on the river!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2015 NEW via mobile

My children (10 and 12) and I did the full day trip and had a blast! The staff are friendly, professional, and knowledgable. Our guide, Sam, kept us all on track (and in the raft)-- she was excellent! Would recommend this outfitter to anyone.

Visited May 2015
“Our visit actually improved the rest of our trip!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2015 NEW

My fiance and I were planning a trip to Asheville and I was in charge of finding some awesome things for us to do. We were both interested in whitewater rafting and after some extensive research browsing many different company's websites, we chose to go with Blue Heron Whitewater on a full day (8 mile) trip. Best choice ever! It looked like we were going to run into rain and the forecast said low 60's for the day. Thankfully, Blue Heron lent us some wet suits and splash jackets (they provide these for free-- not everyone does!) to keep us comfortable for the entire day. The coldest part of the day was taking them off at the end of the trip!

The trip itself was awesome-- the rapids were very fun and the view was gorgeous! My fiance and I actually got to go out by ourselves with our guide, Drew, and our guide-in-training, Dan. Drew was very knowledgeable and told us a lot about the history of the river. He kept us laughing the entire way and kept us busy (and wet!) going through the rapids. We didn't have a lot of specifics planned for the rest of our Asheville trip, so Drew and Dan recommended some AWESOME restaurants as well as hikes. We parked where they told us to park downtown, ate where they told us to eat, and even hiked on specific trails they suggested the next day. We ended with a trip to Hot Springs as per their recommendation as well. My fiance and I felt that they not only gave us a GREAT day on the river, but helped make the rest of our trip fantastic!! In the end we left Blue Heron Whitewater (and Asheville) with huge smiles on our faces. Thank you!!

Visited April 2015
“Our visit actually improved the rest of our trip!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2015 NEW

My fiance and I were planning a trip to Asheville and I was in charge of finding some awesome things for us to do. We were both interested in whitewater rafting and after some extensive research browsing many different company's websites, we chose to go with Blue Heron Whitewater on a full day (8 mile) trip. Best choice ever! It looked like we were going to run into rain and the forecast said low 60's for the day. Thankfully, Blue Heron lent us some wet suits and splash jackets (they provide these for free-- not everyone does!) to keep us comfortable for the entire day. The coldest part of the day was taking them off at the end of the trip!

The trip itself was awesome-- the rapids were very fun and the view was gorgeous! My fiance and I actually got to go out by ourselves with our guide, Drew, and our guide-in-training, Dan. Drew was very knowledgeable and told us a lot about the history of the river. He kept us laughing the entire way and kept us busy (and wet!) going through the rapids. We didn't have a lot of specifics planned for the rest of our Asheville trip, so Drew and Dan recommended some AWESOME restaurants as well as hikes. We parked where they told us to park downtown, ate where they told us to eat, and even hiked on specific trails they suggested the next day. We ended with a trip to Hot Springs as per their recommendation as well. My fiance and I felt that they not only gave us a GREAT day on the river, but helped make the rest of our trip fantastic!! In the end we left Blue Heron Whitewater (and Asheville) with huge smiles on our faces. Thank you!!

Visited April 2015
“Our visit actually improved the rest of our trip!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2015 NEW

My fiance and I were planning a trip to Asheville and I was in charge of finding some awesome things for us to do. We were both interested in whitewater rafting and after some extensive research browsing many different company's websites, we chose to go with Blue Heron Whitewater on a full day (8 mile) trip. Best choice ever! It looked like we were going to run into rain and the forecast said low 60's for the day. Thankfully, Blue Heron lent us some wet suits and splash jackets (they provide these for free-- not everyone does!) to keep us comfortable for the entire day. The coldest part of the day was taking them off at the end of the trip!

The trip itself was awesome-- the rapids were very fun and the view was gorgeous! My fiance and I actually got to go out by ourselves with our guide, Drew, and our guide-in-training, Dan. Drew was very knowledgeable and told us a lot about the history of the river. He kept us laughing the entire way and kept us busy (and wet!) going through the rapids. We didn't have a lot of specifics planned for the rest of our Asheville trip, so Drew and Dan recommended some AWESOME restaurants as well as hikes. We parked where they told us to park downtown, ate where they told us to eat, and even hiked on specific trails they suggested the next day. We ended with a trip to Hot Springs as per their recommendation as well. My fiance and I felt that they not only gave us a GREAT day on the river, but helped make the rest of our trip fantastic!! In the end we left Blue Heron Whitewater (and Asheville) with huge smiles on our faces. Thank you!!

Visited April 2015
“Our visit actually improved the rest of our trip!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2015 NEW

My fiance and I were planning a trip to Asheville and I was in charge of finding some awesome things for us to do. We were both interested in whitewater rafting and after some extensive research browsing many different company's websites, we chose to go with Blue Heron Whitewater on a full day (8 mile) trip. Best choice ever! It looked like we were going to run into rain and the forecast said low 60's for the day. Thankfully, Blue Heron lent us some wet suits and splash jackets (they provide these for free-- not everyone does!) to keep us comfortable for the entire day. The coldest part of the day was taking them off at the end of the trip!

The trip itself was awesome-- the rapids were very fun and the view was gorgeous! My fiance and I actually got to go out by ourselves with our guide, Drew, and our guide-in-training, Dan. Drew was very knowledgeable and told us a lot about the history of the river. He kept us laughing the entire way and kept us busy (and wet!) going through the rapids. We didn't have a lot of specifics planned for the rest of our Asheville trip, so Drew and Dan recommended some AWESOME restaurants as well as hikes. We parked where they told us to park downtown, ate where they told us to eat, and even hiked on specific trails they suggested the next day. We ended with a trip to Hot Springs as per their recommendation as well. My fiance and I felt that they not only gave us a GREAT day on the river, but helped make the rest of our trip fantastic!! In the end we left Blue Heron Whitewater (and Asheville) with huge smiles on our faces. Thank you!!

Visited April 2015
“Our visit actually improved the rest of our trip!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2015 NEW

My fiance and I were planning a trip to Asheville and I was in charge of finding some awesome things for us to do. We were both interested in whitewater rafting and after some extensive research browsing many different company's websites, we chose to go with Blue Heron Whitewater on a full day (8 mile) trip. Best choice ever! It looked like we were going to run into rain and the forecast said low 60's for the day. Thankfully, Blue Heron lent us some wet suits and splash jackets (they provide these for free-- not everyone does!) to keep us comfortable for the entire day. The coldest part of the day was taking them off at the end of the trip!

The trip itself was awesome-- the rapids were very fun and the view was gorgeous! My fiance and I actually got to go out by ourselves with our guide, Drew, and our guide-in-training, Dan. Drew was very knowledgeable and told us a lot about the history of the river. He kept us laughing the entire way and kept us busy (and wet!) going through the rapids. We didn't have a lot of specifics planned for the rest of our Asheville trip, so Drew and Dan recommended some AWESOME restaurants as well as hikes. We parked where they told us to park downtown, ate where they told us to eat, and even hiked on specific trails they suggested the next day. We ended with a trip to Hot Springs as per their recommendation as well. My fiance and I felt that they not only gave us a GREAT day on the river, but helped make the rest of our trip fantastic!! In the end we left Blue Heron Whitewater (and Asheville) with huge smiles on our faces. Thank you!!

Visited April 2015

http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g49326-d1829751-r270601392-Blue_Heron_Whitewater-Marshall_North_Carolina.html#
“Awesome day on the river!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2015 NEW via mobile

My children (10 and 12) and I did the full day trip and had a blast! The staff are friendly, professional, and knowledgable. Our guide, Sam, kept us all on track (and in the raft)-- she was excellent! Would recommend this outfitter to anyone.

Visited May 2015

Local Happenings

Madison County - Towns of Marshall, Hot Springs, and Mars Hill

Week of November 29 - December 6

  • Thursday, November 30 to Sunday, December 3: The Theatre Department on the campus of MHU will present "The Great American Trailer Park Musical". Music and Lyrics by David Nehls: book by Betsy Kelso. Show times as follows: Thursday-Saturday, November 30 to December 2 at 7:30 pm and Sunday, December 3 at 2:30 pm. There will not be a performance on Friday, December 1 due to other events on campus.Tickets are $15 for adults and non-MHU students are $12. Reserve you seat today!!! The MHU Box Office is located in Day Hall and will be open 3-5 pm each weekday beginning on Monday, 11/20. Cash or check only. For more information: www.mhu.edu/events. This show is not suitable for children under 13.
  • Saturday, December 2: Bailey Mountain Cloggers Christmas Performance & Silent Auction. Silent Auction - 3:00 p.m. Performance - 5:00 pm, Moore Auditorium on the campus of MHU.The award-winning Bailey Mountain Cloggers perform their annual Christmas show and host a silent auction. Admission is $5.00. www.mhu.edu
  • Friday, December 1 at 7 pm: MHU's Annual Christmas Concert in Moore Auditorium on the campus of MHU. Don't miss it! Performances by the University Choir and the Mars Hill University Wind Symphony will fill the auditorium with holiday cheer and get you in the mood for Christmas! Admission is free and open to the public. For more information: www.mhu.edu
  • Saturday, December 2 at 6:30 pm: A Night of Hope Benefit Concert; live music, fair trade products and vendors. Proceeds to support Human Trafficking Prevention in Cambodia. Legacy of Hope International in partnership with Noonday Collection and Mars Hill Radio Theatre. $8 donation, tickets at the door.
  • Saturday, December 2 from 10 am to 3 pm: Christian Harmony Shaped-Note Singing. DOG (dinner on the ground) FREE. At The Marshall Presbyterian Church, 165 S. Main Street, Marshall. For more information: www.madisoncountyarts.com
  • Friday and Saturday, December 2 & 3 at 6:30 pm: CHRISTMAS PAGEANT Downtown Marshall is transformed into the streets of Bethlehem for this annual reenactment of the Nativity. Over 35 cast members bring this outdoor drama to life depicting costumed townspeople backed by songs of the season by a local choir and narration.
  • Saturdays, December 2 and 9 from 10 am to 3 pm: Hot Springs Homegrown & Handmade Market holiday markets in the Welcome Center. Santa will be there after the parade on December 9. For more information: https://www.facebook.com/hotspringsmarket    or https://hotspringsmarket.wordpress.com/
  • Sunday, December 3 at 3 pm: Katherine Girtman's Senior Clarinet Recital in the Broyhill Chapel on the campus of MHU. Admission is free and open to the public. For more information: www.mhu.edu
  • Tuesday, December 5 from 7 pm to 10 pm: an Evening of Traditional Dance: Circles, Squares, Contras, Waltz & Live Music. Marshall High Studios on the Island in Marshall. Open to Everyone! $5/ages 12 and under-free.

  Every Week:

  • Weekdays from 10am to 4pm (closed for lunch 12-1):  Weizenblatt Art Gallery in Moore Auditorium on Cascade Street, Mars Hill will host an exhibit featuring artist Martha Skinner. The exhibit will run from November 1 - December 15. Information at 828 689-1209 www.mhu.edu/art. Free. Open to the Public. Hours are 10-4 pm Monday- Friday. Gallery will be closed from 12/16 to 1/16.
  • Saturday, August 19 through March 4: The Rural Heritage Muserm at MHU opens a new exhibition, "The Civil War In the Southern Highlands: A Human Perspective." Museum is open daily, except Mondays, from 11 to 5 pm. Located in the Montague Hall and admission is free. Information at http://www.mhu.edu/museum or call 689-1200.
  • Wednesday, October 25 through December 1: Ragtime Willy Pottery, an exhibit of functional works by Andy Gordon. On display at the (New) Arts Center, 152 North Main Street, Marshall. For more information: 828-649-1301 or www.madisoncountyarts.com
  • Mondays from 7 to 9pm: Open Mic Night at Stackhouse Restaurant, 37 S. Main Street, Mars Hill. 680-1213
  • Tuesday, Fridays & Saturdays at Good Stuff, 38 Baileys Branch Rd in downtown Marshall. Live Music (plus other nights at times). 649-9711
  • Wednesdays from 6:30 to 9:00 at Zuma. Open Mic with hosts Linda Jarvis and Jerry Burns.649-1617
  • Thursdays at 7pm at Zuma, 7 N. Main St, downtown Marshall: FREE music with "Bluegrass Jam" featuring Bobby Hicks and friends 649-1617
  • Thursdays From 8 to 10pm: Andy Buckner Live Music at Stackhouse, 37 S. Main Street, Mars Hill. 680-1213
  • Fridays at 6:30pm at The Depot, 282 S. Main St, downtown Marshall: FREE traditional music and dancing.649-2332. (Closed 1st Friday of December)
  • Saturdays from 10am to 2pm: Mars Hill Tailgate Market is on the Quad on Mars Hill University campus. Holiday markets from November 4 to December 16. For more information: https://www.facebook.com/marshilltailgatemarket
  • First Saturday at 7:30: Rodeo at the Madison County Fairgrounds. $10 for tickets.  Next rodeos December 2 and January 6 at 7:30. Inside with heat and concessions. Only one time a month throughout the winter. Contact 828-206-6969 for more information.

 Planning Ahead

  • Friday and Saturday, December 8 & 9: The Madison County Arts Council Presents: 11th Annual Holiday Sale. Friday 5-8 pm and Saturday 10 am to 3 pm. Pop-Up Studio, 31 North Main Street, Marshall. For more information: www.madisoncountyarts.com or 828-649-1301. Free and Open to the public.
  • Saturday, December 9 at 11 am: Christmas Parade in downtown Marshall. Bands, floats, horseback riders, fire trucks, and a visit from the big guy in the red suit.
  • Saturday, December 9 at 11 am: Christmas Parade in Hot Springs starts in downtown. Santa afterwards at the Welcome Center.
  • Saturday, December 9 from 10 am to 3 pm: Hot Springs Homegrown & Handmade Market holiday market in the Welcome Center. Santa will be there after the parade on December 9. For more information: https://www.facebook.com/hotspringsmarket    or https://hotspringsmarket.wordpress.com/
  • Thursday, December 14 to December 23:  Smoke on the Mountain: Sanders Family Christmas will be presented as a benefit Christmas show for SART on the campus of MHU. Performances Thursday - Saturday at 7:30 and matinees on both Saturdays and Sundays at 2:30. Tickets are $25 and $20 for groups of 10 or more. To buy tickets or more information: sartplays.org or box office 866-811-4111
  • Wednesday, January 17 to Friday, February 4, 2018: David Brendan Hopes will the the guest artist displaying his painting in the Weizenblatt gallery on the campus of MHU: Opening reception will be Wednesday, January 25 from 6-8 pm. Admission is free and opening to the public. For more information: www.mhu.edu/art

 Contact us to learn more about the wide variety of experiences available in our beautiful county
by emailing lorri.helms@visitmadisoncounty.com


 

 

Explore Asheville

 

The Explore Asheville website is a great comprehensive resource that gives an excellent overview of the Asheville scene.