Smoky Mountain Adventure
Explore the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee with a guided hiking trip and whitewater rafting combo just outside of Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg.
Experience the Smokies first-hand in two of the most popular area adventures by rafting the Pigeon River with NOC and enjoying a scenic hike with our activity partner, A Walk In The Woods.
Your adventure starts on a guided walk beneath the trees as we explore the quiet side of the Great Smoky Mountains. The path takes you down an old gravel road as it rises gently through a deciduous forest, sprinkled with Eastern Hemlocks and rosebay rhododendrons. Signs of past inhabitants include walled springs, traffic circles, and relics of a bridge long gone. The Civilian Conservation Corps has lovingly improved this unique trail that once traveled through an abandoned mountain community. The buildings stand no more, but the stories of the former residents remain in clues hidden in the forest. For the finale, a steep 200′ climb leads hikers to a little-used overlook where one can glimpse the beautiful valley below. The hike is approximately 3 hours and rated easy to moderate.
That afternoon you will embark on an adventurous rafting trip on the Upper Pigeon river with one of NOC”s professional guides in your raft. With nearly-continuous Class II-IV rapids and views into the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the Upper Pigeon delivers 5 miles of splashing wave trains and bouncy hydraulics, making this one of the most exciting river trips that NOC offers.
This package is great for groups and can be customized for schools, scouts, churches, and larger families. Please call our guest services for more information.
If this is too much adventure, NOC offers two levels of guided whitewater rafting on the Pigeon River for any adventure level, including float trips for ages three and up.
- Combine whitewater rafting and hiking in this perfectly paired adventure for visitors and locals, ages 8 and up.
- Paddle the Upper Pigeon River with NOC-trained guides through Class II-IV rapids, exciting splashes, and beautiful views of the Smoky Mountains.
- Explore the trails with expert guides from A Walk in the Woods.
What to Expect
Meet your Trail Guide at NOC’s Pigeon River Outpost for your hiking and rafting adventure.
For the hike, please bring at least 16 ounces of water per person and make sure everyone wears sturdy walking/hiking shoes. Snacks are provided. You may also want to bring rain gear (jacket or poncho). A day pack is recommended to carry items in.
Lunch between your activities is not provided and restaurants in this immediate area are limited, so we recommend bringing a picnic lunch. The Upper Pigeon fully guided rafting trip is approximately 2.5 hours in total with 1.5 hours spent on the river. The remainder of that time will be spent on trip preparation and shuttle.
For the rafting trip, please dress for getting wet. Wear shoes that will stay securely on your feet (flip-flops are not appropriate footwear). Bring dry clothes and shoes to change into after your trip. Changing rooms and showers are available at our Outpost.
Before You Visit
These trips will be led by expert NOC guides and our partner organization, “A Walk in the Woods,” for the hiking portion. All rafting supplies are supplied by NOC.
For Rafting: Dress in clothes that can get wet, and wear shoes that will stay securely on your feet, with a back heel straps (flip flops are not recommended). Don’t forget dry clothes, a towel and shoes for after your trip. There are changing rooms and showers available.
- Clothing that can get wet
- Shoes that will stay securely on your feet
- In cooler weather, avoid wearing heavy cottons; wear synthetics and wool socks
*Please leave all personal belongings in your car, our guides will take your keys prior to your rafting trip and hold them until your return.
For Hiking: Participants should wear sturdy shoes on this moderate hike. Plenty of water and extra snacks are encouraged (some snacks provided). Guests should also bring rain gear for this hike.
All participants must weigh at least 70 pounds OR be 8 years old. All minors (17 and under) require the presence of an adult during all activities.
Snacks are provided on the hike, but participants should bring at least 16 ounces of water per person. Lunch is on your own. Restaurants in the area are limited, so it is recommended to bring a picnic lunch to enjoy at our Outpost.