Things To Do
Mid-April the recreation river traffic really picks up all the way until mid-October.
The upper pool of the Kanawha is very quiet and calm on most days which means calmer water. It's filled with beautiful mountain views and is great for privacy and laying out and relaxing. It also great for water sports for this same reason. There's currently no restaurants or fuel stations on this section of water, but food delivery arrangements can easily be made from Grub Hub or Door Dash.
The lower pool is a busier section, you can expect to see many other boaters and some rougher water. This is great for those that want to be in the middle of it all. This section has restaurants, fuel, shopping, etc. Beautiful views of our state capital and a dock that you can park at and visit the beautiful and historic capital city of Charleston. You can also go up the Coal River and Elk River from this section of water.
On this section they have several events throughout the spring, summer, and fall season.
*Live on the Levee which is held every Friday from Memorial Day to Labor Day from 6:30pm to 9:00pm. This event has live waterfront bands where you can anchor out and enjoy some great music. They close the local streets and bring in food vendors. So you can enjoy the music from the water or park at the dock and check out what they have to offer on land. They also occasionally have fireworks.
*The annual Sternwheel Regatta which is a boater's paradise. Sternwheeler boats come from all over to dock up at the Charleston Levee, the city closes the streets down and allows many retail and food vendors to setup all weekend long. Pair this with live music (a few big-name headliners), a carnival, and fireworks and you can't help but have a great time! The 2023 dates are June 30th to July 4th.
*The Annual Charleston Doo Wop is another fantastic event held around the first week of October. This is a motor heads dream! The entire river front boulevard is closed and hundreds of modern and classic cars line both sides of the street. They have a carnival, food and retail vendors, live music, and fireworks.
Boating on the lake picks up around May 18th and slows down around Labor Day. This lake is filled prior to boating season and drained at the end by the US Army Corps of Engineers. Beginning and end dates depend on water level and can vary.
It's no secret why they call this the little Bahamas of the east. Deep clean clear water with picturesque rock faces, mountains, trees, and sand bars. Calm private coves and plenty of no wake zones to relax in. This has some of the best swimming in the state. There is also many campgrounds surrounding that are boat friendly so plan a camping/boating weekend out of it. There is a fuel station at the main marina, at this time there is no restaurants, but you can have Grub Hub or Door Dash meet you at one of the boat launches with food. This lake features a beach that you can swim to and an island with picnic tables. This lake is also located close to the newly founded New River George National Park (25minute drive).