- Our 1/2 day Piers Gorge whitewater rafting adventures have multiple depart am and pm departures daily from our Vulcan MI outpost.
- Please arrive 30 minutes early to check in and prepare for your trip.
- Piers Gorge trips last approximately 2-3 hours; check out our ‘What to Wear’ page for tips on how to stay comfortable on the water.
- Paddlers do not need previous experience or swimming abilities to go rafting with Northwoods Adventures.
Age and Weight Requirements
Minimum of 11 years old and 100 lbs to ride through the class IV + rapids in the gorge, and 4 years old and 50 lbs ride to the Piers Gorge Trail beach and watch the raft go through those rapids from the portage trail overlook with an adult. We reserve the right to cancel your river trip without refund if you violate or attempt to violate the minimum age and weight policy.
On the Water
Once we are on the river, we’ll go through an initial safety speech, learn to paddle, and play some games to get started. After 45 minutes of team building, swimming, splashing, and drifting, we enter a stretch of class I – II+ rapids that travel through breathtaking scenery.
Before entering the class IV + rapids, we arrive at the ancient Piers Gorge Portage Trail beach and take an easy hike up to get a look at the rapids to come. Anyone who does not meet our minimum requirements or who does not want to ride through the class IV + rapids will remain at the portage trail overlook to watch from shore. Those who are willing and able to ride through the Gorge walk back down to the raft, climb in, and get ready for the adventure ahead. After traveling through this whitewater section of river, we walk back up to the overlook to rally with our onlookers, we can then switch supervising adults, before we go through the Gorge a second time. We then collect our onlookers, depart from the lower beach, and travel down a little further to our last rapid, ‘Terminal Surfer’. At the surf hole (conditions dependant) we will surf the willing.
Due to this river’s unique operating platform we are able to accommodate children and persons with certain impairments on a class IV river trip. Persons who require supervision must be accompanied by a competent individual from their group on the portage trail. the supervising adult will have the opportunity to switch out with another supervising adult for the second run, ensuring everyone gets a ride through the Gorge.
At approximately a half mile in length, the Piers Gorge Class IV whitewater section is short in duration in comparison to other rivers, but it is not to be minimized. The rapids are large and immensely powerful. Some are technically challenging; all are demanding and very fun.
Last-minute reservations are always welcome at Northwoods Adventures. As we do fill up quickly, especially on peak travel weekends, reservations are highly recommended. Please refer to our Trip Policies page for more detailed information on reservation policies and procedures, or contact us with any questions.