UPPER YOUGH AT A GLANCE
- Class V
- Age 16+
- Fully Guided
- Must be up for an active day of paddling
- Previous Rafting Required
- Runs Friday, Saturday, and Monday
- Small rafts of 1-3 guests plus guide
- 4 to 5-hour trip starting around lunchtime
What makes the Upper Yough so special…
With its drop of up to 116 feet per mile, the Upper Yough is one of the steepest commercially rafted rivers in the country!
Your rafting adventure on the Upper Yough begins when you enjoy the scenery in the deceptively calm entrance pool. You’ll soon find the river’s main attraction…whitewater, and plenty of it! Even the Class III rapids we warm up on will get your attention. Soon, you will be headed into the “heart” of the Upper Yough.
Get ready to be careening through the tightest of slots in boulder-piles like “Split Decision” and the “Fat Man’s Squeeze”. The “heart” of the Upper Yough is something very special…virtually one continuous Class V rapid! There’s simply nothing else like it anywhere! To get through this stretch, you must skillfully paddle over 20 Class IV and V rapids, including such famous monsters as “Bastard”, “Meatcleaver”, and “Cheeseburger Falls”. In the majestic Upper Yough gorge, the river commands your attention and precise cooperation is needed to skillfully navigate the many blind chutes and ledge drops. This 11-mile trip is one of the world’s finest. If you’ve rafted before and want to climb to the top of the rafting ladder, the Upper Yough is an absolute must. Space is limited so “don’t miss the boat”!
Running a river as challenging as the Upper Yough requires the highest standards of professionalism in both the company you choose and the guides that company employs. Upper Yough Expeditions pioneered commercial rafting on the Upper Yough and has been running the river commercially for over 35 years. Our safety record is unsurpassed. Our rafts are top-shelf…self-bailing rafts with footcups and safety straps. Type V Coast Guard approved PFD’s and helmets are provided for every trip. Because of the intense and highly technical nature of the Upper Yough, each raft will have a guide and a maximum of three guests. Every trip is accompanied by a safety kayak.
Our guides are seasoned professionals who specialize in Class V river descents. Each is an expert in navigating paddle rafts in steep, technical whitewater. They have come to the Upper Yough because they feel that this unique river is the perfect expression of their need to be at the top of their profession. Each of our guides has an intimate knowledge of the river and respects it for both its beauty and it dangers. As professionals, we take pride in minimizing risks and giving you the most exciting trip possible. We have an unblemished safety record and that is directly attributable to the caliber of the boatmen we employ. Each guide carries valid Advanced First Aid and CPR certifications. Most are have received training from the ACA in Swiftwater Rescue.
Directions to Friendsville meeting spot:
GPS users can enter Friendsville, MD Community Park or GPS Coordinates N39.497185, W79.643179. The Community Park is on Old River Rd and there are brown signs all over town directing you to the Whitewater Take-Out area. Or follow our turn by turn directions below.
From I-68 Westbound:
Take Friendsville Exit (#4). Turn right at the bottom of the exit. Turn left on Addison Rd. just past the Jubilee Restaurant. Turn left into the Friendsville Community Park. Stay to the right on the loop around the park. We meet at the back of the loop. Look for the black mini-bus that says Upper Yough Expeditions.
From I-68 Eastbound:
Take Friendsville Exit (#4). Stay right at the fork on the exit ramp to Rt. 42 South. Make your first left on First Ave. Turn right on Maple . Turn left on Addison Rd. just past the Jubilee Restaurant. Turn left into the Friendsville Community Park. Stay to the right on the loop around the park. We meet at the back of the loop. Look for the black mini-bus that says Upper Yough Expeditions.