Blog

Search our Site

If 2020 has taught us anything it highlighted the importance of quality time with the ones we love. It showed us that “stuff” truly is not important. This holiday season we should all re-think how we gift, what we gift. This coming year let’s make memories that will last a lifetime by gifting adventure! It is as easy as 1-2-3 when you purchase a gift card online at www.ncoutdooradventures.org. NCOA will even personalize a gift certificate for you if you reach out to them by email or phone and ask for a personalized certificate!

Email:  ncoadventures@gmail.com

Phone: (828) 260-4505

With 2020 heading towards the rear view this gift will not only be the most unique under the tree it will be the most memorable!

fall colors

Why gift adventure? It isn’t just for making memories. The types of experiences NCOA offers builds confidence and strength both physically and mentally. Nature is the best form of medicine! Being outdoors offers a break from the chaos of life a much-needed escape from the day to day rat race we all endure!  The health benefits of being outdoors are endless and is one of the primary reasons we decided to start an adventure company.

Nature as medicine is also known as “wilderness therapy: defined as the prescriptive use of adventure experiences “that kinetically engage guests on a cognitive, affective, and behavioral levels. Wilderness therapy is one of the most unique, effective forms of therapy. It creates many opportunities for personal growth and success. The benefits of wilderness therapy programs are numerous and include:

  • Adventure trips offer families, individuals or team focused programs that remove individuals from the distractions of everyday life. Providing a grounding and recentering experience!
  • Build independence
  • Learn leadership and communication skills
  • Greater awareness of others
  • Increased confidence
  • Find passion for new activities

Why choose NC Outdoor Adventures? NCOA is a premier adventure guide service offering boutique style services. What this means for the consumer is a trip catered to your specific needs, what you want to learn and the adventure or adventures you want to experience. NC Outdoor Adventures is the most diverse guide service in the Carolina’s offering over 20 adventure trip options including tubing, rafting, whitewater kayak instruction, climbing, rappelling, waterfall rappelling, hiking, camping, youth and veteran programs, wild edible plant walkabouts plus alpine climbing instruction during the winter months. This diversity in trip offerings makes our family owned company the perfect choice for many families, couples, adventurers, and scouting groups. 

Below we have listed several things that set us apart from other Guide Services!

collage 1

Adventurers, Families, Couples, and Friends

  • More trip options than any other North Carolina adventure guide company.
  • Competitively priced adventure packages that allow you to sample multiple activities.
  • Charismatic staff who are both fun, safe, well trained and experienced. 

You are the foundation of our company, and the reason we come to work every day. 

Large Groups and Camps

NC Outdoor Adventures is the best guide company in the region for large group outings. Our small company size and boutique approach allows us to cater trips to your group needs, while providing the most competitive rates in Western North Carolina.

  • The most flexible course packaging and price structure of any NC or local guide service.
  • Catered "boutique style" adventure packages perfect for family reunions, youth activities, birthdays, bachelor and bachelorette parties. We even build programs to meet badge requirements for scouting organizations.
  • Experienced staff to help with your logistical needs from day one.

group funny face photo

Climbers:

Our mission is to offer comprehensive, yet simple, instruction that instills confidence and self-reliance into every climber we work with. Our education philosophy revolves around teaching three concepts, Actions (Belay, ascend, descend), Tools (transition techniques, rescue techniques, lead techniques) and Applications (terrain, experience, and environmental considerations) through three simple questions: “what to do”, “how to do it” and “when to do it”. Our guides are professional, friendly, knowledgeable and passionate about providing services to their community- through our work we support climbing access by donating 5% of our profits every year to the Carolina Climbers Coalition.

We offer:

  • The best student to instructor ratio in North Carolina; a ratio of 4:1.
  • Comprehensive yet simple to understand instruction.
  • The most competitively priced courses with the best paid guides in the industry.
  • Continued support to all course alumni.

collage 2

Comments

fall colors
It is finally September and fall is almost here.  Fall is hands down my FAVORITE season in NC with crisp cool morning temperatures, warm afternoons, beautiful fall foliage, and all the fall holidays and festivities. 

Living in Western North Carolina we are blessed with so many outdoor activities year-round.  Tourists flock to this area for its natural beauty to hike, fish, rock climb, kayak, cycle, view wildlife, and visit the many wineries, breweries, farm stands, galleries, and unique small-town shops.  Fall is such a big deal here that there is an interactive map the local travel bureau put together to let people know where the colors are currently changing!  To find this map simply google fall foliage forecast NC!

We cannot talk about the stunning colors and views without mentioning the Blue Ridge Parkway.  The BRP is a scenic, winding drive covering 469 miles from Cherokee, NC up to the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia and is famous for its stunning views.  BUT once summer gives way to fall and the leaves start changing colors, nature really puts on a show!!  Fall is the peak time for travelers along the BRP.  For those of you who will be visiting up here in the fall, bear in mind that with so many people traveling the BRP, traffic along the parkway is slow, giving you plenty of time to enjoy the scenery and hopefully a little peek of the wildlife too. 

Here are some of our favorite to-do in Western NC in the fall:

climbingRock Climbing

While rock climbing can be done year-round in our area, fall and its amazing weather is the peak time for climbing in the Carolinas. Just imagine scaling the rock wall in Linville Gorge and seeing a unique view of the fall colors from above!  There are so many great National Forests and State Parks in the Carolinas that are open to climbers.  Luckily, NC Outdoor Adventures knows all the great climbing spots in the area, away from the crowds, that is suitable for climbers of all abilities.  We offer climbing and rappelling classes year-round, with our waterfall rappelling at Big Bradley Falls in Saluda ending in late October for the season. 

Mountain Project also is a great resource for area and route information for climbing in the Carolinas.

Hiking

There are so many hiking trails in our area, and we have a lot of favorites. One fall favorite is hiking and picking apples at the Orchard at Altapass! Hiking to waterfalls in the fall is a unique treat. We have a lot of waterfalls in our area including Linville Falls, Crabtree Falls, and Grassy Creek to name a few.  There are hikes into the Linville Gorge and above the Gorge at Table Rock.  You can even section hike along the Appalachian Trail or Mountains to Sea Trail.  One of our favorite sections of the AT starts at the Carver’s Gap trailhead (only 10 miles from our outpost) hiking North up Roan mountain and provides visitors with stunning 360-degree views. On a clear day you can see three different states and fall colors for miles!  We like this hike so much we even hike it in the winter! 

Each season, NCOA offers guided hikes to give visitors a unique opportunity to learn about plants, history, and hiking safety through guided hikes with local experts. Our local experts will share with you their stories about why they are so passionate about the area and will teach skills that you can use including what to bring hiking and what to do if an emergency were to arise.  Hiking and connecting with nature has many benefits including reducing stress, improving your heart health, improving balance, and mental well being all while making memories and getting a little exercise.   

kayakingKayaking and Tubing

We have been fortunate to have good rainfall this summer allowing us to still run our flat-water kayaking and tubing trips through into the fall.  Tubing trips will wrap up in early September with flatwater and whitewater trips continuing through October. The views from the water are always spectacular, even more so in the fall, with riverside foliage views that not many people get to see.  We are so excited that we can offer kayaking trips and share Western North Carolina’s spectacular fall colors in our own unique way!!  Looking for something more adventurous?  We also offer whitewater kayaking options where you can paddle your way downstream and whitewater your way through the fall colors of Western North Carolina.

One more thing I wanted to mention, we just completed one of our volunteer river clean-up days on a section of the Toe River.  A couple of times during the year, we partner with other companies in the area and volunteers who come out to remove debris and garbage from the river.  This latest clean-up was the largest one yet and we are so grateful for everyone who came out and made the day a HUGE success.  The Toe River is a beautiful river that meanders through the countryside and forests of Yancey County. The river is a natural mountain and stream-fed river and it is one of the great natural features in our area. 

When planning a trip to our area, be sure to plan ahead, especially in the fall as rooms are limited and fill up fast, sometimes selling out a year in advance.  The accommodations here are as unique as our area, there are unique tiny houses for rent, including our converted Root Cellar, historic inns along the parkway, and tons of camping options. 

Want more photos or updates? 

Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for more photos and updates about our activities!  If you need help planning your trips to visit our beautiful area you can check out our calendar or reach out to us directly.   

fall primary

Comments

Hi everyone! We really miss our guests and we wanted to take this time to update you on a few things!

First, we will be opening Saturday, May 16th. This includes our Tiny House lodging option and most of our 20+ adventure trips.  

all we offer 2020

Our Outpost and Tiny Hike shop will open Memorial Day weekend.

root cellar tiny 2020

When we open the safety of our guides and guests will be priority. This is our phase 1 plan. NCOA closed on 3/20/20. Since that time, we have developed new policy and procedures to deal with the COVID threat. This is what we will be doing to keep our staff and guests safe: staff screenings, cleaning of all equipment and shuttles after each use, hand sanitizer for anyone entering the outpost and shuttles. During phase 1 we will only be offering private group trips. These trips will need to be groups of no more than 10 and must consist of individuals who have spent time together during quarantine or live in the same household. For lodging we will be cleaning more frequently and are looking into professional cleaning services and products.

We will look into opening our public trips at the end of phase 2, possibly phase 3. The decision will be based on state and county guidelines.

Moving on to what our guests can look forward to this season:

  • all 4 Toe River whitewater trips. This includes 2 options for ages 5+ and 2 options for ages 13+. Some of our new full day trips include lunch from local restaurants including: Red Hill Grocery, Southern Ridge Café, DT’s, Bonnie & Clyde’s and Tropical Grill. 

whitewater collage 2020

  • rafting is available on high water days when the Toe is a minimum of 3 feet high

rafting 2020

  • flatwater and tubing trips will take place daily starting at 10 am, last trip time will be 4 pm. 

tubing 2020

  • We will also continue to have guided plant and waterfall hikes where you can learn about wild edible plants. Providing the food tasting after is still under consideration as we look at COVID food guidelines. 

plant hike 2020

  • We are also offering tote and float boat rentals

tote and float boat 2020

  • Guests can still book all of our rock-climbing trips (for beginners and advanced climbers) as well as rappelling and waterfall rappelling trips. Advanced booking of at least 7 days required.

tote and float boat 2020

waterfall rappelling 2020

  • New this year will be our full moon paddle trips on the beautiful Toe River…the headwaters for the Noli. We are also offering free movie nights at the farm where we can easily socially distance with lawn chairs and an outdoor projector. Movies featured will be: Free Solo, Dawn Wall and Reel Rock and some children adventure movies.

We are so happy that NC Outdoor Adventures is the most diverse guide service in the Carolinas. Our diversity of offering over 20 trips might just have saved us from having to close our doors for good.

So on to the bad news. Sadly, this year we will not be able to run our Spider Lily Paddle Trips. This decision was made based on several factors with the main issue being the decision of SC to implement capacity restrictions, with the gates closing when reached. This means we cannot grantee paying guests park entry. Guests booked have been contacted.

Two other trips not being offered at this time include: river ecology snorkel trips and our learn to swim community days. These two activities make adequately social distancing impossible.

At this time we thank you for watching our video and hope you will make some future plans that include NC Outdoor Adventures!!!!

All details and booking can be done online at www.ncoutdooradventures.org or via phone/message.

Please remember we are still a great option for camps, scouts, family reunions and friend and family outings.  Advanced booking is STRONGLY encouraged during phase 1! Stay safe and healthy and we hope to see you soon!

 

Comments

NC Outdoor Adventures,
1173 Whitson Branch Rd.
Bakersville NC 28705
Email: ncoadventures@gmail.com
Phone: (828) 260-4505
Our Privacy Policy

 

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Stay up to date with the latest classes and trips