WEST VIRGINIA WHITE WATER
Rafting beginsearly in the spring and runs through October.
By LINDSAY SEMPLE
VINDICATOR STAFF WRITER
ACE is an adventure center that thought of everything.
The largest rafting-based company in West Virginia owns more than 14,000 acres of land to house all of its activities, lodging and several areas along the New and Gauley Rivers.
Set up in the midst of the 70,000-acre New River Gorge National River, the adventure center is complete with cabins, chalets, a campground, dining area and lounge. It also has an outfitters store with everything from souvenirs to outdoors equipment.
For a couple, a family, a group of buddies or by yourself, ACE welcomes all levels of athletic ability and skill. Professional guides in every activity ensure a safe trip on the water, through the woods by horse or bike and even climbing a mountain.
With many rafting options, ACE can take participants on more than 25 trips down the New River or the Gauley River, three seasons of the year, starting early in the spring with big water in the New River and ending with the dam released water of the Fall Gauley in September and October.
With on-premise stables, horseback riding trips are tempting for the scenic aspect.
With more than 20 horses, the stable offers three trips a day ending with a Sunset Ride to view the New River from a cliff. A slow-moving, guided trip gives you plenty of time to view the wooded area pathways.
Mountain biking on top-of-the line bicycles is challenging yet open to people of all ages. One customer over age 80 enjoyed the downhill trip to the town of Thurmond, a small town approximately five miles from ACE.
Intense Mountain Biking and various races are held on some of the best biking paths in West Virginia in conjunction with ACE.
Rock-Climbing at ACE offers a mind-over-matter experience. With concentration, a lot of effort, a few scraps and bruises, climbers can work to the top.
New to ACE in 2002 is the Alpine Tower, a corporate training or adventure learning activity. Targeting groups of kids, (ex: church groups or Scout troops) and the corporate world, the Alpine Tower and other cooperative exercises bring a group closer to one goal, building teamwork skills, trust and communication.
ACE also offers other activities including cave expedition, kayak Instruction, ATV riding, golfing and even airplane rides.