Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Taylor's Travels in Chile

NOC Kids and Teens star Taylor Cote shares some of her insights about paddling and traveling in Chile.

This quarter we’re back in Chile and the flight back over all of us were bouncing in our seats, excited about all the new stuff to come this quarter. It is so fun seeing some of the same sights and how they differ in the changing of the seasons. The difference between this quarter and last is that we’re heading south. We’re going to be working our way down to the Futalefu River, one of the most famous rivers in Chile. While we’re traveling down there we’re going to be stopping in at the Rio Negro and Rio Blanco before we make it down to the Futa.

So far we’ve been back in Pucon chilling at David Hughes’s house here. It’s a pretty sweet spot; we have a river right in our front yard. There’s also a play hole that will come in depending on the level. While we’ve been here we have been paddling some new rivers too. My favorite new run is the Rio Palguin. It’s an amazing boof/waterfall run that just blows my mind every time we go there. The put-in is walking over a mossy land bridge and seal launching into the rocky gorge. It can be a little nerve-racking dropping into the gorge because you know you are in for in it. After the first adrenaline rush you realize everything is good to go.

While here we’ve also traveled to the town of Choshuenco which has the Rio Fuy right in its backyard. It was such a small town and had an amazing feel about it. The ladies we stayed with were very welcoming and happy to have us staying there. The town had few streets so the morning workouts when we ran were absolutely hilarious. You would pass everyone at least once or twice before finishing. The river we had there offered many different types of paddling with varying classes. The Upper Fuy consisted of more waterfalls and boofs. The Middle and Lower Fuy however had amazing playboating and wave filled rapids good for working on downriver moves, such as kickflips and wave wheels. Billy Harris joined us during our stay there and he was a great wealth of knowledge, everyday he would make sure we were boofing up a storm.

Today is going to be fun filled, we’re planning on having a boater cross on part of the Trancura River which will be interesting. Afterwards though we have to pack up everything because its our last day in Pucon. I know everyone is nervous and excited to really get started on our trip south.

Happy Paddling!


Taylor Cote is the recipient of the 2009/2010 NOC Photography Scholarship. Click Here to see Taylor’s New River Academy blog and more of her fabulous stories.

The photos of Taylor kayaking were taken by David Gorskiare on the Rio Palguin. The photo of the volcano and the town of Pucon, Chile was taken by Taylor.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

NOC's Great Outpost Buzz

With a grand opening set for April 2, NOC's Great Outpost—an 18,000-square-foot LEED-certified retail and adventure hub—has been triggering buzz from travel sites across the internet.

Last week, Gatlinburg was listed as one of 's Top Five Bargain Destinations for spring, with NOC's Great Outpost mentioned as a highlight of visiting town. From the outdoor gear, clinics and classes to the indoor climbing wall and adventure concierge service, NOC's Great Outpost will be a brand-new family destination for visitors to Gatlinburg and the Smokies. Click below to read the full article.

This story also appeared on and among other news websites.

Expect to see more information about NOC's Great Outpost Grand Opening celebration, scheduled for Friday, April 2. While you're in Gatlinburg for the event, make time for some of these new diversions and events, including the Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage April 21–25.

In the meantime, you can click the photo above to view a slide show of the construction process at NOC's Great Outpost. We have been converting the old Open Hearth Restaurant into a LEED-Certified adventure destination like only NOC can, and we hope you'll be as excited as we are!