WV outfitters fear flood images may deter tourists

BECKLEY, W.Va. — All indicators suggest the 2016 Gauley Season will offer optimal whitewater rafting, but some outfitters worry recent floods may prevent tourists from coming aboard.

Over the six weeks that comprise some of the best whitewater rafting in America, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Huntington District, will release around 43.5 billion gallons of water from Summersville Lake.

Dave Arnold with Adventures on the Gorge said outfitters have seen a decline in rafting reservations since the June floods. He expects that national attention to impact Gauley Season, which starts Sept. 9, but said it is too soon to tell the depth of that impact.

“When you have CNN and The Weather Channel showing the major infrastructure problems we had, that can cause people not to visit…

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