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Dive Into River Exploration Along the Blue Ridge Snorkel Trail

Hiking, kayaking, mountain biking and … snorkeling? When you think adventure in the Blue Ridge Mountains, donning a snorkel and mask for underwater exploration might not be the first thing that comes to mind, but there is an expansive world beneath the surface of Western North Carolina’s rivers. And now, thanks to the newly created Blue Ridge Snorkel Trail, explorers of all ages can dig deep into that underwater world.

Blue Ridge Snorkel Trail

Blue Ridge Snorkel Trail: An immersive experience

Linking together 10 publicly accessible sites (most at city and county parks) for safely exploring crystal clear streams and rivers, the Blue Ridge Snorkel Trail gives snorkelers the opportunity to view all sorts of fish, crayfish, mussels, aquatic insects and salamanders. Each site features an educational sign depicting noteworthy species at the site, safety information, and other tidbits about the trail. Entry is free; all that’s needed to enjoy the experience is a snorkel and mask (and, if desired, a wet suit to extend time spent in cooler waters).

The 10 sites began opening in June, with all of them set to be opened by August. They are located in the Catawba River Basin, French Broad River Basin, Hiwassee River Basin, Little Tennessee River Basin and Yadkin River Basin. Optimal season to river snorkel is the summer, when waters are at their clearest. If you don’t own a snorkel and mask, no problem. Area dive shops and river outfitters around Asheville and Western N.C. often have such equipment for rent or sale.

Celebrating North Carolina trails

The Blue Ridge Snorkel Trail’s unveiling comes at a fortuitous time. Not only is snorkeling an increasingly popular way to explore the region’s rivers and streams – with more and more businesses leading sightseers on guided snorkeling tours – but the new trail elevates the state’s General Assembly designation of 2023 as the Year of the Trail. This initiative celebrates N.C.’s expansive network of trails and greenways, showcasing the landscape diversity that makes the state’s outdoor offerings so interesting.

For more information about the Blue Ridge Snorkel Trail, including a list of the 10 pilot trail sites and how to get there, visit And for more information on real estate with easy access to the Blue Ridge Snorkel Trail, or anywhere in Asheville or Western N.C., please contact us at, or call us anytime at 828-707-9556.

Learn More: Blue Ridge Snorkel Trail

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