ACE Adventure Resort
By Chelsea Bricket
Located just a short drive from all of Ohio’s major cities and located in Oak Hill, West Virginia, lies ACE Adventure Resort. Adjacent to land designated by The National Park Service as The New River Gorge National River, the 1,500-acre base is home to on-site rock climbing, a zipline course that offers views of the stunning New River Gorge, hiking and biking trails, a paintball course, a 5-acre lake waterpark, and so much more!
For over 30 years, ACE has been a pioneer in outdoor adventure, priding themselves in offering the best trips that you can experience on the New and Gauley Rivers, with skilled guides leading you every step of the way.
The most popular trip at ACE holds that title for a reason. The Lower New River Gorge Whitewater Rafting Trip is easily the best summertime East Coast rafting experience. The 6.5 mile stretch of river winds through the bottom of a 1,000-foot canyon, with house-sized boulders, thick deciduous forests, and sandstone cliffs surrounding rafters as they make their way through the class IV+ portion of the river.
The trip ends beneath the iconic New River Gorge Bridge, perhaps West Virginia’s most well-known spot. Raft the Lower New as a full-day trip and experience a riverside lunch and jump rock, or opt for the shortened half-day version.
For little rafters and their families, the Upper New River provides the best intro to whitewater around. Kids ages 6 and up can raft with their group and a guide, or paddle (or tandem paddle) their own inflatable kayak, known as a duckie.
This full-day trip brings no shortage of fun, with lots of time for swimming and for playing games in the water. A riverside lunch is provided halfway through the trip to fuel you through the rest of your day.
Back on base, the 5-acre Wonderland Waterpark is unlike any waterpark you’ve ever seen. The natural, spring-fed lake is full of inflatable obstacles and toys so you can bounce, slide, and glide your way around the lake all day. Conveniently located next to The Lost Paddle featuring Woody’s award-winning wood-fired pizza, you can take a break and enjoy delicious American cuisine right by the lake. Grab an adult or kid-friendly slushie and hang out on the beach, or play a game of volleyball or giant chess.
New for 2019, Wonderland Waterpark has added on a Splash Pad, so toddlers and smaller children can get in on the fun at the waterpark too.
ACE is proud to be the home of the only zipline course with views of the spectacular New River Gorge. The 9-zip course consists of tandem ziplines, so you can race your friends for bragging rights. Featuring two bridges, you can look down at the trees and a mountain stream below. The grand finale is a treehouse that is appropriately named “The Plunge.” If you aren’t afraid of the dark, the night zip option provides serious thrills, as zipliners take on the course armed only with a headlamp to light their paths.
Miles of mountain biking and hiking trails weave their way around ACE, so you can take to the trails during your stay. Bring your own bike and hit the trails, or rent one from our welcome center. Those interested in a guided mountain bike experience can choose from a wide variety of biking trips, from beginner-friendly to more advanced single track rides. Or, see the trails and the scenic vistas they lead to on foot by hiking your way around ACE. Guided hiking trips are available both at ACE or into the New River Gorge.
The New River Gorge is world famous for a myriad of outdoor activities, including rock-climbing. Well renowned for its rock-hard sandstone, climbers travel the world to climb in this region. ACE offers climbing trips into the heart of the New River Gorge, where beginners and experienced climbers alike can try out classic, world-famous routes. Or, climbers can opt to climb on ACE’s private cliffs–this is an especially great option if you can only spend a half day climbing.
A short drive from ACE will bring you to Summersville Lake. The largest lake in West Virginia boasts crystal clear blue waters and is lined by cliffs almost everywhere you look. See Summersville Lake from a stand-up-paddleboard or lake kayak, or try out ACE’s Pontoon Adventure and SUP, climb, tube, swim, and relax your way around the lake.
With lodging on site, you won’t have to travel far for your activities. ACE has everything from deluxe cabins complete with hot tubs, to primitive camping, with everything in between. Many of our cabins have their own kitchen, so you can cook from the comfort of your cabin, or you can opt to dine at the Lost Paddle Bar and Grille.
The Lost Paddle plays host to locally and nationally renowned bands every weekend, so you can check out the music scene, grab some food and a craft beer or specialty cocktail, and enjoy the show.
Ready for more? Join ACE every September and October when the US Army Corp of Engineers releases the water from Summersville Lake and creates world-class whitewater rafting on the Gauley River. For 6 weekends, rafters can experience the Upper Gauley, full of pulse-pounding whitewater, or the Lower Gauley, a calmer and incredibly scenic stretch of whitewater.
Experience ACE Adventure Resort and feel like you’re a world away without having to travel far. For more information and special discounts, visit aceraft.com/oh.
ACE Adventure Resort