Out Under the Stars on the French Broad River!
Looking for a
great way to spend some family time in the great outdoors
or perhaps a quick weekend getaway? A canoe camping
trip with Headwaters Outfitters on the scenic French Broad
River is the perfect way to get outdoors and introduce your
friends and family to the joys of canoe camping. Fall asleep
to the soothing sounds of the river, then wake up to the
smell of woodsmoke and frying bacon. We make it easy for
you by providing all the essential paddling gear, as well
as transport to and from the river. You can even set up
your campsite before you get on the water! Whether you're
a Boy Scout troop or a father-son duo, now is the time to
discover our overnight canoe camping trips in the mountains
of Western NC.
Outfitters offers you and your family two options
in canoe camping. Both options are the same on the first
day; a scenic 8 mile/ 3 hour paddle down the first few miles
of the French Broad River. The difference is your take-out
location on day 2. Island Ford Canoe Camp-Out
gives you a 2 mile/ 1 hour paddle the second day. Hap
Simpson Canoe-Camp-Out gives you a 12 mile/ 5 hour
paddle the second day. Either way, you're paddling through
some of the prettiest scenery to be found in Western North
Carolina, past old homesteads, farm fields and woods.
your camping gear and food; leave the rest to us!
Camping Trip Day One:
mile/3 hour paddle
to our privately owned campground at Hannah Ford
at Headwaters Outfitters' river shop to complete pre-trip
check in. Everyone will need to read and complete a Release
form, and our 12-minute safety video must be watched
by your entire party.
2. For your convenience,
you may then drive your vehicle to the campground &
set up camp before getting on the river. Folks love this!
Please note, your vehicle must remain at the river shop
while you are on the river. Upon completion of your river
trip, you may return to the campground with your vehicle
to gather your gear.
3. Once your campsite is set up,
you return to the river shop no later than 1:30, dressed
in your river clothes and ready to get on the water by 2
4. Everyone will be outfitted with all paddling gear, which includes life jackets, paddles and canoes.
5. We then depart
via our vans on a short 1-mile drive to Champion River Park
Access in Rosman. After reviewing some river paddling and
safety techniques, you launch your canoes and are off on
your own to paddle three hours downstream to Hannah Ford
River canoe-in campground.
6. Arrive at Hannah Ford and spend
the evening around the campfire.
If you wish to start your canoe camping trip at another
time of the day there may be an additional $25 fee added
to the total trip cost. You must be on the water no later
Camping Trip Day Two:
mile/1 hour paddle
to Island Ford
5 hour paddle to Hap Simpson Park.
On day two of
your adventure wake up to the sounds of the river! For those
of you choosing the Island Ford take-out
you will have a short 2-mile, 1-hour paddle before meeting
your river host. For those of you paddling on to Hap
Simpson take-out you will have a full 5 hours,
12 miles of paddling under your belt before you meet your
trip is a great way to get outside!
Canoe-Camping Trips :
Ford - take-out
Canoe Camping Trip
Paddle 8 miles @ 3 hr.
to Camp site
Paddle 2 miles @ 1 hr. to pick-up
- take out Canoe
miles @ 3 hr. to Camp
miles @ 5 hr. to pick-up
$78.00 per person
a Reservation here
Person in canoe
Group Rates are available with deposit & advanced
reservations. Call 828-877-3106 for more information
Multiple tent sites, picnic tables, grills, lantern
holders and fire rings.
Central drinking water is available as well as a port-a-john.
Trip Fees Include:
canoe or kayak, life jacket, paddle, shuttle service
to and from the river, a river map, river information
& safety orientation, parking, and use of facilities
at Hannah Ford.
Important Camping Information
- Prior to
your launching, we will agree upon a time to meet you
and bring you back to the river shop. Plan to arrive
at your designated take-out point on time to avoid late
- This is
a paddle-in only camping area. No vehicle parking allowed.
NO alcohol or illegal drugs.
- Campers are responsible for all gear.
- Pack out
everything you bring, including trash.
- We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone.
To get the most out of your trip we ask that you review our river policies, FAQ, and river tips information.
Hannah Ford River Access is private
property of Headwaters Outfitters and is the location
of our canoe-in
camping facilities. It is available by river to
our guests, by reservation.