We Missourians know a few things about floating; each year we grab a canoe and head off down a river to float the heat away. We learned that floating is a popular summer pastime in the Smoky Mountains as well.
There were several river outfitters near our campground, Big Meadow Family Campground (in fact you could walk there). We selected Smoky Mountain Outdoor Center, a fairly new company to the Townsend Scene. We selected them because they had fabric covered tubes instead of vinyl rafts. We also had had several interactions with the staff at SMOC and just really liked them.
There are a few nuances that I would like to point out so you are prepared for your floating adventure:
- All property along the river is private. You can only put in and take out in designated spaces. There is no pulling over and hanging out.
- There is no food or drink allowed on the river. The river outfitters do have picnic areas.
- The course is only a mile or so long.
- You can go down the river as many times as you would like in a day.
- The rate to float is roughly $10.00 – $15.00.
- Floating in an inner-tube is different than a canoe or kayak. There is a learning curve on how to protect “your assets” from the big rocks that are just under the surface of the water.
I hope you will check out our YouTube video. Our son, The Boy, brought along one of his best friends and we designated him our official videographer. He took some great footage and I have had a fun time playing with it.
During our second trip down the river we encountered a group of young men from Louisiana. These young men seek adventure on a different level that I but it was fun capturing them on video. Thankfully, no one was hurt and they went home with a very tall story. Here is their video: