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“A Great Adventure”

Crab Apple Whitewater
Ranked #1 of 16 things to do in Charlemont
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Reviewed August 14, 2013

I went on this trip with a few of my friends before our graduation from UMass and we had an amazing time! It was early in the season so the water was cold, but we were comfortable in the wet suits provided. All of the workers were very friendly and clear with instructions (we were first-timers).
We loved our guide, Micah! We had no doubt that he knew what he was doing as he guided us down the river, making sure we were having a good time. He really made the trip a fun experience with his sense of humor and vigor.
We did the trip that stops for a picnic about halfway down, which was just what we needed. We proceeded to the water fights (which apparently you can opt out of but I don't think any of the boats did) where we got very competitive with the splashing, and after a few more rapids were at the end and exhausted. It was awesome.
I have been recommending the trip, with Micah as a guide, to everyone I know. I can't wait to go again!

1  Thank Ashley M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
appleraft, Manager at Crab Apple Whitewater, responded to this reviewResponded December 16, 2013

Thanks for the nice review. Glad you had a good time with Micah - he is a good raft guide for our family business. Hope you come back with the same friends for some bigger rapids on your next trip and ask for Micah to guide you all again.

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386 - 390 of 453 reviews

Reviewed August 14, 2013

! My husband and I came with our two teenage sons and did the 10 mile class 1-3. The scenery is of course breathtaking, and the rapids exhilarating, but the guide really stepped up the fun level, which took what could have been just a great time into an awesome time! We will definitely be back, and we hope our guide Micah will be there, but it looks like all of the guides know how to make the trip exciting.

1  Thank ckeidan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
appleraft, Manager at Crab Apple Whitewater, responded to this reviewResponded December 16, 2013

Thank you taking the time to let us know about your trip. Glad you had a good time with Micah and very perceptive that the guide makes the trip extra special. Also, you noticed that all of the Crab Apple guide seemed adept at making the trip extra fun - and that is what we are all about!
Thanks for noticing! See you next trip.

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Reviewed August 14, 2013

Putting the phrase 'whitewater rafting' and 'Massachusetts' into the same sentence would likely draw a 'huh?' from anyone who has ever been down, say, the Colorado River. But through a quirk of geography and technology, Massachusetts does offer a relatively mild, but definitely fun way to experience the pleasure of shooting the rapids. The geography is the Deerfield River in the north central part of the state, and the technological quirk is the daily release of water by hydroelectric dams that, for a few hours each day, turn the normally shallow and placid Deerfield into a fast-flowing river complete with Class I, II and III rapids.

This past weekend, we made out second trip down the river. We don't own kayaks, helmets, vests or paddles; and we certainly don't have access to multiple cars to get us from the pull-out point back to the put-in point. But CrabApple Whitewater Rafting does. And, for $49 per person (less for kids up to nine years old), they supply everything above, plus a mid-adventure snack.

We were at CrabApple's riverside headquarters in Charlemont a few minutes before our scheduled 1:45 p.m. start. We were fitted with helmets and life vests (the state police actually write tickets to those who don't wear them), then driven by bus eight miles upriver. There, we were given a quick course in kayaking and safety, then issued a pair of one-man rubber kayaks and left to our own devices. Having done this once before, we made certain we were one of the first boats into the river and we paddled out ahead of the crowd.

For the next three hours, we enjoyed the river. There are lots of class I (baby) rapids and two sets of rapids that are genuine Class II, complete with boils and holes. There were enough shallow sections to keep us looking downstream for the next set of obstacles. But for much of the time, we could just float and paddle, enjoying the scenery. And, the scenery is spectacular: a green canopy of trees, verdant riverbanks and a variety of birds large enough to please an ornithologist.

Just past the half-way point, the CrabApple staff was waiting with granola bars and drinks. we paused for a few minutes, then paddled on. The end point was the CrabApple's headquarters. We turned back in our gear, collected our car keys, swapped our wet clothes for dry ones in their changing room, and were on our way back into the real world. Elapsed time: about four and a half hours.

CrabApple Whitewater runs an efficient, friendly class act. Jenn Mooney, who is part of the family that owns the business (which also has operations in Maine and Vermont), did all the briefings and instructions. Her sense of fun is infectious. She was enjoying herself (even if this was her umpteenth talk of the season) and so did we all.

A note: we were on the easy part of the river. CrabApple also runs trips on two other sections of the Deerfield which feature Class III and IV rapids. We'll work our way up to those at a future date.

2  Thank Neal S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
appleraft, Manager at Crab Apple Whitewater, responded to this reviewResponded December 16, 2013

Thank you for a very thorough and positive review. We are, in fact, hidden to many out in the Berkshires but the word is getting out that daily dam releases make for some fun whitewater opportunities here in western Massachusetts. And what a great way to see the river - floating and gently paddling down some mild rapids of the Deerfield while enjoying the enveloping canopy of green. Thanks also for noticing that family is part of our trips and that Jennifer, the owner's daughter, puts the same effort into each trip after decades on the river and tens of thousands of guests. Our family is all about service - every single day!!

Thank you again for joining us each of the past two summers and we look forward to your next trip as well.

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Reviewed August 12, 2013 via mobile

Before I even contacted CrabApple I submitted GS paperwork for trip approval - I've never gotten a green light so fast...council response was "CrabApple, Go! They're great!" Guides greet everyone in parking lot with clear & helpful directions, staff were friendly & very helpful (especially Frank, Jen & Katie), bathrooms are clean & scout fun patches look great! While booking the Fife Brook Whitewater Raft trip (ages 8+) for my Jr GS troop my 5 yr old asked if she could go rafting too so my family decided to try the Family Float Trip for ages 5+. Our family (kids ages 5, 7, 9 & 11) all had a blast, rapids were very mild & we all got soaked in the water wars (everyone got a water squirter to soak other boats with). Kids enjoyed floating holding the boat. Photographer took a couple photos & the 1 we bought arrived next day in mail. Snack was served river-side, about 1/2 way through, with several choices to keep everyone happy. Our guide, Jair, was perfect match for our family. Our son has dyslexia, ADHD (new med not working that day) & Pervasive Developmental Disorder...he can be a bit of a challenge...Jair took him under his wing & gave him 1:1 paddle lessons & plenty of positive support without being asked or told about anything except the ADHD. Jair just knew what he needed & did it. Our GS trip was today & of course I forgot to request Jair. We had 14 people in 2 boats. Our guides Connor & Mark were great too! Before we even left base Mark was busy making kids happy by readjusting all their "too tight to breathe" life vests & helmets. I was in Mark's boat with 5 screaming girls & another adult. 1 girl was terrified & cried 1/2 way down the river. Mark handled it all very well, providing comfort to the crying girl & quickly rescuing an adult who somehow bounced overboard! Connor's boat was full of smiles, all reporting back that they'd had a blast especially while doing wheelies & soaking us with buckets in water wars. The picnic lunch in a park was perfect (make your own sandwich buffet, chips & brownies & 3 choices of drinks) - not 1 complaining girl! Also, loved that all dishes were re-useable rather than thrown away. Slide show @ end was quite entertaining. I was surprised how many photos had been taken of our trip - we only knew about 1 posed photo. Mark helped us get a discount on the CD of photos for the troop so I can send them to parents & not make girls purchase themselves. Photo orders were prepared while we were still there, which was nice. The only not-so-perfect part of our day was the lack of leg room on the bus - my knees bumped seat in front of me - @ 5'3" I'm not a big person but I felt a bit claustrophobic. Can't wait to try out their other whitewater trip! We'll be back...with enough people for 3 boats so we can request Jair, Connor & Mark!

1  Thank VisitedFromMA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
appleraft, Manager at Crab Apple Whitewater, responded to this reviewResponded December 16, 2013

Thank you so much for the comprehensive review of both of your trips. So happy that you mentioned our fantastic guides and their care for their guests. Each group of rafters is unique and has different needs - that's what makes the day so fun! Nice to hear that you noticed the green operation for lunch - we don't carry paper plates and cups for lunch as other outfitters do. What a waste!

So happy that you loved both trips and we hope to see you again next season with your family and/or girl scout troop!

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Reviewed August 12, 2013

I had the most wonderful experience rafting with Crab Apple Whitewater! A had an amazing raft guide Travis! Who was fun an energetic! He kept us laughing the whole time! We rafted the Monroe Bridge Section and it was a blast! I had never been rafting before but needless to say I will 100% do it again with Crab Apple! I have also recommended it to many of my friends as we hope to plan a trip for next year hopefully with Travis! I would like to personnally thank Travis for an amazing experience; one that I will never forget!

1  Thank Kaylin T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
appleraft, Manager at Crab Apple Whitewater, responded to this reviewResponded December 18, 2013

Thanks for the nice review - we have forwarded it to Travis so he knows you had a great time. Our guides love getting great reviews on Trip advisor, so thank you!

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