Hiwassee OutfittersHiwassee Outfitters is located in Reliance, TN on the Hiwassee River. They specialize in rafting, kayaking and tubing rentals and shuttle services on the Hiwassee River. They also have a campground, cabin rentals, restaurant, and retail store. Hiwassee Outfitters large wooded campground offers 40 individual camping sites. Each site is equipped with picnic tables and fire rings, and some sites have electrical hookups that can accommodate motor homes. Many sites are located directly on the Hiwassee River with some located on Ellis Creek. All sites have direct access to the river for swimming and fishing. In addition, we offer a bathhouse with hot showers and flush toilets.Advanced reservations are recommended. Fees apply to all activities.
Hiwassee RiverThe Hiwassee River Blueway offers 55 miles of adventure in Southeast Tennessee. Extending from the Appalachia Dam near the border of North Carolina to the Tennessee River at Blythe's Ferry in Birchwood, the wide river is well known for its water-based recreational opportunities including tubing, kayaking, rafting, and fishing.The upper section of the Hiwassee River is the most popular section of the river, offering an easy to moderate whitewater experience on Class I and II rapids, with the occasional Class III. This section winds through the mountains of the Cherokee National Forest and is designated as a Tennessee State Scenic River. There are a number of outfitters near the river that offer raft, funyak and tube rentals between Memorial Day and Labor Day each year. The middle section consists of swift flatwater between the Highway 411 bridge and Charleston, offering slow, peaceful floats and fishing for trout, bass, bluegill, and crappie. During most summers, striped bass make their way up this stretch of the river, as well. Motorboats can generally navigate to the Patty Bridge access area. The lower section is slow-moving flatwater between North Mouse Creek to Blythe Ferry boat ramp near the Hiwassee Wildlife Refuge and the Tennessee River. All types of boats can navigate this stretch of the waterway, moving between many inlets and islands. Fishing is abundant in the main channel, inlets, and creeks along the way. Agriculture and industry line of the banks of this section of the river, with a few marinas to provide food, drinks, and fuel. CAUTION: The Hiwassee River water release schedule is controlled by Tennessee Valley Authority's Apalachia Dam. Water release schedules can change suddenly and without notice due to changes in weather conditions and power system requirements. The depth and swiftness of the river can change rapidly in the upper section of the river. Your safety depends on obeying all posted safety regulations and warnings. Two generators are required for adequate water levels on the upper section for recreational boaters. TVA releases two generators on weekends Memorial Day through Labor Day. This release typically begins at 11 a.m. and boaters can generally get on the river by NOON below the Appalachia Powerhouse. Be sure to double-check TVA - Apalachia Water Release Schedule before you go.
Hours and Cost
Open Daily: Sunrise to Sunset
Cost: Free. Guiding services vary
Lower Ocoee RiverThe Ocoee is well-known for its whitewater, but the lower Ocoee is the perfect venue for lazy afternoon flatwater paddling or tubing trips. The lower Ocoee spills out below Parksville lake, rolling quietly through the pasturelands of the Appalachian foothills. OAR outfitters provide tubes for flatwater tubing trips on this section of the river. For those with their own tubes, canoes, kayaks, or paddleboards, there are several options to take out below the Sugarloaf Recreation Area (Ocoee Dam #1) at public and private launches and campgrounds.NOTE: The Ocoee River is dam controlled. Be sure to check the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Ocoee Dam #1 recreational release schedule before scheduling your lower Ocoee tubing trip. No release = no water.
Upper and Middle Ocoee
Hours and Cost
Cost: Free for individuals with their own equipment.
OAR tubing rentals are $14 per person with advanced reservations.
Webb BrothersWebb Brothers Float Service, located in Reliance, TN is the oldest outfitter on the Hiwassee River. They offer inflatable rafts, kayak and tubing rentals, and shuttle services. Whether a novice or experienced paddler, young or old, the 5-mile float down the Hiwassee River is a perfect way to spend a sunny summer afternoon. The Hiwassee River winds through the spectacular gorges of the Cherokee National Forest and the pastoral setting of the Reliance Historic District. Based on the International Scale of River Difficulty, the Hiwassee is primarily a Class II river, with certain sections considered to be Class III.Advanced reservations are recommended. Fees apply to all activities.
Tubing near Chattanooga
Hiwassee River is a Class II/III River with rapids to navigate. Most outfitters offer rentals and shuttles for self-guided trips.
Ocoee River (Lower section) is Class I with no rapids. This river is best suited for families with small children and those seeking a very relaxing experience.
Towed Tubing or Kite Tubing requires a motorized boat, rope, lifejackets and a licensed boat captain.