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Not everyone goes to work in shorts, t-shirts and sandals in the most beautiful Gorge in the United States. The climate in the Nantahala River Gorge is the best anywhere in the USA. As you enter the Nantahala River Gorge, you begin to feel the cool breeze of the River relaxing everything around you.

Your customers and clients are on Vacation! They just came from Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Louisiana and other areas for a “Beat the Heat Vacation”. They are just about as relaxed as they can get, and they are here to have a great time. You never know who you are going to meet here, nor where they are coming from, but every one of them who come here are ready for adventure and they are heck bent on having some “REAL FUN!.

Showing enthusiasm and having a love of the river is just the ticket you’ll need to have them wishing that they were as lucky as you! You wake up, listen to the “call of the river”, smell the coffee roasting on the campfires across the street where you have just been invited to attend breakfast with the group that you shuttled to the river put-in yesterday. As you begin to have your breakfast, everyone is focused on you, asking questions about everything related to having fun that you can imagine. You trade phone numbers and make plans for the next trip, and even make a few plans for the winter together.

Watch at your own risk. . . These are employees having a little fun. . .

River Times Episode 1: Caution: River Guides Made this Video (Thank You Rodrigo and Scott B.) Miss you guys..

River Times epsisode 2: Caution: River Guides Made this Video (Thank You Rodrigo and Scott B.) Miss you guys..

I get lots of these types of comments from my Employees and Guides..
The two most common comments are, Your Boats are the best I have ever Paddled (We design and Manufacture our own) and
Your Customers Tip better than any Company I have ever worked for.
One you only here from the Totally Honest guys, who talk before they think is,, “Man,, I can’t believe I am getting Paid to do this”….
But, this is in the middle of lots of comments like this one.. Most of the time, they are over the phone, or a quick text and phone call, but, this one came in as a message on Facebook from a Guide on the Wilder side, who usually shows up when it is really busy, ready to hop in, and give a hand.. He’s always welcome to help,, but,, man,, what a Drama Queen… Ha.. Yep, you know who you are!!

Hey man, how’s it going?. Once a week, normally on Saturdays I sit back relax, and kind of reminisce on what I’ve done and where I’ve been. I looked at the photos of the river and it makes me think of the Paddle Inn family. I worked for you for five different summers. Not whole summers if course, but the time I was there felt like some of the best days of my life. Your company and what you do is the coolest opportunity that people my age we could ever imagine or dream of. To be so at one with nature, to meet different people from all over the world on a daily basis, to do things that people can only do for a weekend all summer long. Honestly there’s no point in this message,I think what I’m trying to say is that the memories we raft guides gain from working for your kick ass company stays with us forever. And I wouldn’t trade these for anything in the world. Thanks..

My Comment to you: You are so Welcome. I know the Feeling.. Once in a while I sit on the front porch,, Quiet with a Cup of Coffee, or some Home Made Wine, and do the same… I hear a comment, see someone’s picture, remember something crazy, and think of all of the good times, and wild times around here.. Can’t say I regret many of them.. Stewart.. Had nickname, Peaches,, never did fit, but, after the Railroad incident late one afternoon,, Snakebite seems to fit him better… I will never walk through the woods the same.. I still can’t hop across the ditch without a freak, and an extended survey of where I am stepping.. I think that was the one incident with the largest lasting impact,, and it didn’t even happen on the compound… That 4 wheeler ride down the tracks,, Ha.. that EMT who heard the call on the radio, and was only a couple of hundred yards away, will never forget that one either.. Ha.. A big rush to get him to the Hospital to get the Antivenin shot… Ha.. that was an eye opener.. I will never let another Poisonous snake live.. I don’t care about the food chain.. Them things are dangerous.. (Juvenile Copperhead for those not in the know)
Everyone knows, copperheads like to curl up to the warm tracks when the Sun drops out of site, and the Gorge cools down quickly… That was just one of the many, many trips down the tracks, where Oops,,, I should have been paying attention… I’ll never forget the call.. “Hey Bossman,, I just got bit by a snake”.. At first thought,,, “Get out of my Face”,, but,, second,,, “This guy is not a Jokster,, and doesn’t play around like that”… Everything worked out all right, but, dang,,, that was a scary situation,, and it all started after he got to the Hospital..

Now it’s time to get to work, the get serious part of the day! Your job is to make sure that everyone’s experience is safe and enjoyable. To assist where ever you can, and make sure that when the customer leaves, he makes plans to come right back to Paddle Inn!

We are a family owned and operated company. The owner (Mark) is a former Master Certified Netware Engineer (Computer guy), and Mom is a retired School Teacher with a long set of credentials. Dad was a college professor with a Doctorate in Biology, Botany and plant physiology. He and Mom paddled this river daily for several years until the Alzheimer’s Disease reduced his trips on the river. Combined, we have enough river trips under our belt alone to equal most other outfitters complete staff. We are here because we love the river, and we love to help others enjoy our passion too.

If you enjoy sports, and you love life, and you like to see other people having fun, this is a great place to spend your Summer.
We have openings for “Safe” Drivers, Office Staff, Yard Hands and qualified River Guides.
If you are energetic, we can train you on the particulars of guiding on the Nantahala River.
You are required to have current and up to date CPR and First Aid training by a nationally recognized program, and we’ll give you the river experience that you will need to be certified by the USDA Forestry Department. We will also see that CPR and First Aid training classes are available to you. You can either take a class, or you can go online and take a new or renewal course at

We also need Commercial CDL drivers. We will always take more CDL drivers.
You must possess at least a Class C-CDL, with Air Brakes, and Passenger endorcements. You are also be required to have an up to date CDL physical card if you have a CDL.CDL’s are hard to get in NC. It has gotten really difficult. But, we usually get someone to come onsite and test for us, but, we need about 4 people to order the test.
If you are serious about working, willing to invest your time and some financial resources, Paddle Inn will help you to get your CDL with P and Air Brakes Endorcements. Call and talk with Mark. He will explain it to you. The CDL drivers earn an extra $1.00/hr over the other employees.

Driving our buses is cool. You load up the passengers, and take them to the top. Drop the rafts off of the top of the bus, and then back to the Outpost. At the bottom, we have 5 mini buses and trailers that we can really move the customers back to the outpost with. It really depends on the days traffic.

If you are one of our CDL drivers, and like to guide on the river, you have priority on the scheduled trips during the week, because you will miss a few now and then on the weekends. You will also get some extra perks being a CDL driver, that only our CDL drivers get, so let us know if you are interested. We can help get you certified too, but we usually do 3 or 4 drivers at a time.. I love driving the buses,, and I have a ball with the customers.

We encourage our employees to bring their families and friends for a trip down the river with you. What a better way to show “Mom” how hard you are working this Summer. Well, how smart you are for not working so hard anyway!
Don’t get me wrong, we hustle when it is time to hustle, but we play when it’s time to play too! You will have access to all of the equipment that the company has during your off time. You’ll get in plenty of river time during the Summer.
Did I forget to mention that the girls love “River Guides!”. I have not quite figured it out yet, but there is some kind of Aura about River Guides. The girls all seem to love them.

Our Season begins April 1, and runs through the end of September. The peak of the season begins near the second week of June and runs through the Second week of August. The last big weekend is Labor Day (1st Weekend in September). If your new love of the river has bitten you with the desire for a boat of your own, you will not want to miss the last weekend in September where boaters from all over attend the GAF (Guest Appreciation Festival). It is a giant yard sale with new and used equipment that covers more than just water sports.

Our employee needs commensurate with the river traffic, so if you are interested in being first on the list, get your application in now so you can be included in our first interviews.
We do have employee housing on the premises on a first come, first serve basis. If you have a camper or tent and want to spend the Summer with us, we can also accommodate you. We are looking for individuals who don’t mind getting their hands dirty, and getting their feet wet. Give us a call today! 828-488-9651

You can fill out our (PDF) Employment Application now, and fax it to 877-265-7253.

Or, if you don’t have a printer and fax, you can download the PDF Fillable Application and fill it out and send it back…
Thanks to Jordan from WI, here is the Email address to send it to:
Just copy and paste it into your To: Email field and give it a send..
I am working on getting the form where you can fill it out online and save it and send it, rather that saving and then filling it out, saving it again, and sending it.. But, hey, this is not my forte, so, let me pull a few more hairs out and give it a little different twist and see if I can figure it out.

If you are serious, a hard worker, and know what to do with your spare time, send a copy of your Drivers License and Social Security card, and I’ll put it all in the file.
BTW,, for you other guys,, the DL and SSC is not my idea.. Check the Governments I9 and you’ll see.


If you are in Parks and Recreation, Marketing, Accounting or some other program at school, and have an Internship program that you are interested in to gain future credits, I will personally work with you and make your internship a success. We are very open minded, and are always looking to try new techniques in our business. If you are creative, and want a chance to prove your theories, lets see if we can brainstorm a bit and put your program together.

Paddle Inn Rafting Company is permitted by the United States Forest Service and is an equal opportunity employer and recreation provider.

What is a River Guide Anyway? Well, he doesn’t let this happen now does he?

Well, he tries not to anyway!

One little “tip” from you these gals hair would still be dry!

Sitting around the campfire at night is a great time to tell them why they flipped, and next time, how they can “get it right!”

Mom said she could do better than Dad did last time! — The oldest Son agreed!

The next trip, they were looking for a qualified Guide!

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