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Family Friendly Float on the Pigeon River!

Lower Section Pigeon River Rafting Beautiful Scenic Floats

The Lower Pigeon River Rafting Scenic Float trip is perfect for guests wanting to spend time on the water but not quite ready for the action of the Upper Section White Water Rafting trip. As the river curves it's way through the gorge, it calms down a bit and offers introductory Class I-II rapids. Guaranteed to help you take a break from the rush of life, slow down to relax, and soak up the sun. Opportunities to see wildlife, flowers and trees indigenous to the Smoky Mountains while surrounded by panoramic, breathtaking mountain views.

What To Expect

After traveling to our outpost, you will check in through our retail office. Once all guests have checked in, your trip will be announce and one of our guides will give you an orientation speech. Each group will be assigned their very own guide who will gear you up with the proper safety equipment and ensure that everything is properly fitted. Feel free to ask them any of your burning questions - they love what they do and are always happy to help. After everyone is geared up and ready to go, you will walk to the river where your raft will be waiting for you. Your guide will teach you how to properly sit in the boat and how to paddle, then it’s officially time to head downstream through one of the most scenic stretches of river in the Great Smoky Mountains area. You can expect a few long stretches of Class I water, where you can splash your friends, take a swim, and spot turtles, blue heron, osprey and sometimes even eagles. The Class I water is disrupted by Class II waves like the Ledges, where you can expect a fun splash. Surrounding you are peaks of the Smokies reaching up to 6,000 feet in elevation, like Mt. Cammerer and Mt. Guyot. At Pebble Beach, a photographer will be on the bank taking your raft’s photos, which will be available to view upon your return to our retail office. After six miles of panoramic mountain views and family-friendly fun and relaxation, you will arrive at the Freeman Park takeout. Your guides will load up the rafts and everyone will take a short ten minute bus ride back to our outpost where you will return your safety gear, shower and change into dry clothing, and head to the office to check out your photos.

What To Wear & Bring

Any shoes with a heel strap, like:

  • Sneakers
  • Chaco Sandals
  • Water Shoes

Anything you're comfortable getting wet in, like:

  • Bathing suit
  • Active wear
  • Quick-dry clothing
  • Polyester/synthetic blends

Optional:

  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses
  • Shower supplies
  • Packed-lunch
  • Dry clothes/shoes for after the trip

Restrictions

Age: Participants must be 3 years old to experience the Scenic Float on the Lower Pigeon.

Weight: Guests must be able to wear a Type V PFD, fitting chest measurements of 58".

All participants must shoes with a heel strap. Anyone under the age of 18 must wear a helmet.

Directions

We strongly recommend that you avoid relying too heavily on your GPS to reach our outpost. Experience has taught us that GPS will often suggest routes that we do not recommend. Here in the mountains, we refer to GPS as Gets People Stuck. Check below for the recommended directions to get to our outpost. These directions will also be available in your confirmation email. Please note: Total Drive Time for each route is an approximate drive time and is subject to change depending on your exact departure point, traffic, and personal driving preferences.

From Gatlinburg: From downtown Gatlinburg, you can find US-321 North at traffic light #3. Continue on US-321 for approximately 20 miles until you come to the first stop sign in Cosby, TN. At the stop sign, you will turn left and follow for 1.8 miles. After 1.8 miles you will see the brown National Park sign for the Foothills Parkway. Turn right onto Foothills Parkway. You will be on the Foothills Parkway for about 6 miles until merging onto I-40 East. Continue of I-40 East to exit # 447 Hartford (the first exit after merging onto I-40 East). At the bottom of the exit ramp, turn left at the stop sign. Once you arrive at the intersection, continue straight for 0.3 miles and lookout for the sign for Big Creek Expeditions. Turn left down the drive directly before the bridge. You have arrived at our outpost (the check-in office is to your right). Please follow the parking signs and then head to the office to check-in for your trip! Total Drive Time »» 45 minutes Note: The Foothills Parkway offers beautiful views of the mountains and several pull-offs to stop and bask in the glory of these ancient mountains. A great opportunity for photographs!

From Pigeon Forge: Take US-411 North for approximately 20 miles to I-40 East toward Asheville. You will be on I-40 for approximately 20 minutes until getting off at exit #447 Hartford. At the bottom of the exit ramp, turn left at the stop sign. Once you arrive at the intersection, continue straight for 0.3 miles and lookout for the sign for Big Creek Expeditions. Turn left down the drive directly before the bridge. You have arrived at our outpost (the check-in office is to your right). Please follow the parking signs and then head to the office to check-in for your trip! Total Drive Time »» 1 hour

From Sevierville: Take US-411 North for approximately 20 miles to I-40 East. You will be on I-40 for approximately 20 minutes until getting off at exit #447 Hartford. At the bottom of the exit ramp, turn left at the stop sign. Once you arrive at the intersection, continue straight for 0.3 miles and lookout for the sign for Big Creek Expeditions. Turn left down the drive directly before the bridge. You have arrived at our outpost (the check-in office is to your right). Please follow the parking signs and then head to the office to check-in for your trip! Total Drive Time »» 45 minutes

From Asheville, NC: Take I-40 West for approximately 50 miles, just across the NC/TN State Line, to exit #447 Hartford. At the bottom of the exit ramp, please turn left at stop sign. Go under the interstate, to the next stop sign (approximately 0.2 miles) , and turn left. Go 0.3 miles and be on the lookout for the sign for Big Creek Expeditions. Turn left down the drive directly before the bridge. You have arrived at our outpost (the check in office is to your right). Please follow the parking signs and then head to the office to check-in for your trip! Total Drive Time »» 1 hour

From Knoxville, TN: Take I-40 East toward Asheville for approximately 60 miles until getting off at exit #447 Hartford. At the bottom of the exit ramp, turn left at the stop sign. Once you arrive at the intersection, continue straight for 0.3 miles and lookout for the sign for Big Creek Expeditions. Turn left down the drive directly before the bridge. You have arrived at our outpost (the check-in office is to your right). Please follow the parking signs and then head to the office to check-in for your trip! Total Drive Time »» 1 hour 15 minutes

Checking In

The time slot that you reserve is your check-in time. No need to arrive any sooner. The orientation talk will begin as soon as all guests are checked in and ready to raft. After booking your trip, you will receive a confirmation email that will include a link to our online waiver signing system. You can help ensure the check-in process goes quickly by having all responsible parties in your group fill out a waiver prior to arriving at our outpost.

We offer Lower Trips on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday starting at 1:00 PM and 3:00 PM from May 4, 2021 through September 5, 2021. Early Spring and Fall trips are dependent of seasonal rainfall. Check out our rafting schedule to learn more.

Lower Pigeon River Rafting Scenic Float

  • 6 miles on the river, lasting roughly 1.5 hours
  • Panoramic, breathtaking views of the Smoky Mountains
  • Great for families with children under 8 years old
  • Opportunities to swim, splash and see wildlife
Guests 3 and older
$39.95*


*Use Promo Code BCE$10 at checkout
Big Creek Expedition brochure

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