Underground Kayaking: A Mesmerizing Adventure in Red River Gorge

Have you ever dreamed of exploring the depths of an underground world, surrounded by breathtaking natural wonders? Look no further than Red River Gorge near Slade, Kentucky. This hidden gem offers a unique and exhilarating experience – underground kayaking. Brace yourself for an adventure like no other as you navigate the flooded limestone mine, immersing yourself in its captivating beauty.

Discovering the Hidden Marvels

If you are planning a visit to Natural Bridge State Park or Red River Gorge, make sure to add underground kayaking to your itinerary. This relatively new attraction has been making waves in the area, offering unforgettable tours that bring you close to the mesmerizing underground landscapes.

The Location and Surroundings

Situated just off State Highway 11, the entrance to the flooded limestone mine lies a couple of miles south of Natural Bridge State Park. The area boasts a multitude of cabins, camping sites, and even mouth-watering pizza at Miguel’s. Additionally, some of the most popular hiking trails in the region, such as Hanson’s Point, Rock Bridge, and Gray’s Arch, are easily accessible from this location. If you prefer to camp nearby, Koomer Ridge Campground provides convenient access to Silvermine Arch.

Booking Your Kayak Adventure

To embark on your underground kayaking journey, you have two options. The Gorge Underground offers classic boat and kayak tours, while their partner company, SUP Kentucky, specializes in Crystal Kayak and stand-up paddle tours. The tours share the same location but have different starting points.

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The Crystal Kayak tour, chosen by many adventure enthusiasts, promises a captivating experience. These transparent kayaks, equipped with colored LEDs, provide a neon glow that envelops you in a surreal ambiance. To secure your spot, make sure to book in advance online, especially if you plan to visit during peak times.

The Gear You’ll Need

It’s essential to come prepared for the underground adventure. While the mine might feel chilly, especially on warm days, you’ll be provided with personal flotation devices (PFDs) to keep you buoyant and safe in case of a mishap. Additionally, you’ll be equipped with helmets fitted with headlamps to illuminate your path. If you choose the Crystal Kayak tour, remember that shoes are not allowed in the boats, so bring warm socks and consider renting neoprene socks and gloves if you don’t have your own.

Unveiling the Underground Wonderland

The tour begins with a fascinating introduction to the history of the 100-year-old mine. As you walk through the dry portion of the cavern, you’ll have the opportunity to spot salamanders, cave crickets, and maybe even bats! Once you reach the kayaks, a brief refresher on paddling techniques will be provided, ensuring you feel confident navigating the underground waterways. Choose your kayak’s colored light, remove your shoes, and prepare for an unforgettable adventure.

Throughout the tour, your guides will regale you with captivating stories and facts about the mine. Marvel at the remnants of the past as you pass by artifacts left behind. Admire the awe-inspiring rock formations and learn about the various types of rocks you encounter along the way. Keep an eye out for rainbow trout gracefully swimming beneath your kayak, adding an enchanting touch to the experience. Your guide’s wit and humor will keep you entertained as you explore the depths of this underground wonderland.

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Capturing the Moments

As you embark on this unique journey, one of the guides will stay behind the group to capture stunning photos of your adventure. These cherished memories can be compiled into a digital photo album available for purchase at the end of your tour.

A Thrilling Experience

After an hour and a half of pure fascination and enjoyment, your underground kayaking adventure will come to an end. Despite any reservations you may have had about caves or mines, the glowing atmosphere, the guide’s humor, and the captivating underwater views will leave you spellbound. This is an experience you won’t want to miss when exploring Red River Gorge.

So, if you find yourself in the vicinity of Red River Gorge, embrace the thrill and embark on an underground kayaking expedition. Discover the hidden wonders of this flooded limestone mine and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Underground Kayaking at Red River Gorge

Remember, adventure awaits! Book your underground kayaking tour at UpStreamPaddle and unlock the secrets of Red River Gorge.