Going on a day-long canoe trip with a toddler doesn’t seem like the most relaxing way to spend a weekend for most, but relaxation isn’t what we look for– it’s adventure.
Anything related to water with kids is nerve-racking because they can’t handle themselves well enough in the water to be self sufficient. For us, that means a life jacket, low-weight clothing, no shoes and we watch her like a hawk. All the preparation and paranoia is worth while when we get to see her love of the water blossom along with her budding interest in the great outdoors.
We decided to head up to the Appalachian Mountains for a weekend of canoeing on New River. The river isn’t deep– and the segment around the outfitter we choose is especially slow and gentle– allowing us the opportunity to relax along with our daughter. We could kick up our feet and point out the horses, river snakes and birds along the bank.
We started off in a rather large canoe, gently flowing down the New River at a slow clip. Our daughter sat up front with me, rendering my ability to paddle obsolete. We just slowly floated down the river, at the pace of the current. A much different pace than our normal, fast-paced lives.
After the first 2-hour run down the river we decided to do a second run with inner tubes– what most of the people on the river were using to drink and drift down the river. The ourtiffter we used was Woohoo’s Adventures, of Boone. From here, you can rent the equipment you need as well as pick up a snack, sunblock and other essentials. You park at Wahoo’s and then the handy folks on site load your boat or tube onto a trailer and drive you in vans up the river where they drop you off and then you float merrily down the stream until you reach the outfitter again. Wahoo’s is also a campground and has tiny huts for rental, but for us one day in the sun was enough, so we headed home after the second run.
And at long last, we drove home from the sun and damp from the river– but happy.