When the James River is running between 3.5′ and 5.5′ (on Westham Guage) this is a great route that will take you about 2-3 hours to float. Above 5.5′ this route will likely take less than 2 hrs. So, if you want to be out there longer, consider doing the Pony Pasture to Reedy Creek route.
There is only one Class II whitewater section at the end…the rest is flatwater with varying current speeds at different water levels. About half way through the route is the William’s Island Dam (Z-Dam), a low bulkhead dam that you will need to portage around. There is a marked trail on Williams Island that we will point out to you during the shuttle ride where you exit the river and use a trail to easily walk around the dam. Trying to run the dam is a terrible idea and has led to people not making it off the river. It’s easy enough to get around, so do yourself a favor and don’t ruin your day… Portage and have a blast!
As the name suggests, for this service we are selling you a tube and providing a shuttle from the take-out to the put-in.
**Important** Park your car at Pony Pasture parking lot– 7310 Riverside Dr, Richmond, VA 23225– and our shuttle will meet you there with your tube. We strongly suggest arriving at least 30 mins early as parking is very limited and it might take awhile to find a space in the lot or on the road.
We’ll give you a ride up to the Huguenot Flatwater parking area, where we’ll review your route and furnish you with a waterproof river map. Then it’s off you go on your tubing adventure! You’ll take-off the river at your car and the tube is yours to keep…pretty sweet deal!
Please keep in mind that life jackets are required when the river level is above 5′, and we don’t provide them…so you will need to supply your own life jackets in that case. RO does not offer this route when the river level is above 5.5′.
The tubes are standard 16″-17″ truck innertubes… not giant deluxe tubes but thick-gauge rubber that can take scraping on the rocks. Want to purchase another tube for your cooler? You can wedge a small cooler that is about 20″-24″ in length into the donut hole of the tube. Bring your own rope to tether tubes if you want. Call us (804-560-0068) after you book your outing and we’ll add the cooler tube to your order.
* Park policy is that alcohol is prohibited on the river. All drinks should be in cans or plastic containers…No glass please!
* People’s biggest regret is getting dehydrated and sunburned. So, do yourself a favor and pack ample water and sunscreen
* Likewise, leave all towels, change of clothes, etc. in your car and have a plan for car keys and phones….nothin’ worse than getting to the takeout with a phone and keys at the bottom of the river. Consider Uber or Lyft. A tube deflation tool is included so that at the end of the trip you can easily get the tubes in your car
* For large groups, we can arrange to buyback your tubes for $10/tube. Call us after you book your reservation to make that arrangement
* If you don’t see dates/times available, please feel free to call the shop at 804-560-0068 during business hours
$41 (includes tube. Also includes one deflation tool per group)per tube
Huguenot Flatwater to Pony Pasture
Approx. 2-3 hrs.
Class I (one set of Class II) rapids