The Arden Bridge over the Tygart Valley River Arden WV

Flowing north through Junior, Belington, and Philippi to Tygart Lake in Grafton, the Tygart Valley River is 118 miles long from source to mouth. It was named for David Tygart, the first white settler to live in the area. The Tygart Valley River is considered one of the best rivers on the East Coast for white-water rafting. Rafters navigate an eight-mile stretch of the river in Barbour County called the Above Arden to Big Cove Run. It's a Class III-V section, and one of many used for paddling. One favorite attraction of that particular section is it's long enough to paddle non-stop, and characterized by picturesque scenery.

Although many experienced rafters visit the river and bring their own gear, supplies can also be rented from local providers. Some even offer guides for newer rafters as well as packed lunches for visitors who want to spend large portions of a day on the river.

The Tygart Valley River is especially popular with white-water rafters in the summer months, because temperatures usually stay in the 80s during the day and dip into the 60s in the evenings. In addition to rafting opportunities, visitors can hunt and fish at the upper and lower parts of the river in areas managed by wildlife organizations.