Current Conditions

Current Conditions for South Fork Shenandoah River

Updated For:Friday, October 7, 2022
River Level:Normal/Low
The River Level Is:Falling Slowly
River Temperature:Low to mid 50’s
Clarity:Dead Clear

Open every day, seven days a week from April 1st thru October 31st.

We got about 2″ of rain across the Valley this past weekend, just what we needed to refresh the river but not cause any flooding.

River level rose briefly into the middle part of our “Normal” range, but is now slowly falling. The water remains clear as a bell.

Needless to say, tubing is done for the season.

WEATHER FOR TODAY: a goregous day, sunny with temperatures into the upper 70’s.

Sunny, but much cooler, and breezy on Saturday with a high of only about 60. Sunny, less breezy, and warmer on Sunday, the better day of the weekend for sure.

BE ALERT: cold water temperatures this time of year raises the risk of hypothermia if you take an unexpected swim. Avoid cotton clothing that holds water (sweats, jeans). Wear fabric that wicks moisture (nylon, wool, polyester, polypropylene). And get out of cold water as quickly as you can.

We have plenty of equipment (rafts, canoes, kayaks) available pretty much each and every day (weather and river conditions permitting) through to the end of October, so last minute river trips are possible. We close for the season October 31st.

Fishing has slowed dramatically with all this cooler weather. As we get deeper in to Autumn and water temperatures drift lower fishing action will continue to drop off.

A final reminder: it is important that you WEAR YOUR PFD when out on the river, especially if you can’t swim, the water is high or COLD, and especially at Compton Rapid, you never know……

Be advised river conditions can change rapidly with sudden storms or heavy rain in the upper watershed. Also, water temperature can vary up to 8 degrees or more in a single day.

To find out more detail about current conditions
click here to visit the Luray River Gauge

Over 5.5 feet – Too Damn High (risky)

4.0 to 5.5 feet – High (pushy)

2.4 to 4.0 feet – Normal (ideal)

2.00 to 2.4 feet – Low (slower)

Below 2.00 feet – Very Low (bumpy)


No equipment will be rented when the river is too damn high, no exceptions.

River is swift and powerful, use extra caution at Compton Rapid, and stay in the main channel. Small rapids smoothed over. Keep those lifevests zipped up.

The ideal canoeing level. Lots of small rapids to play in.

Canoes will bump and scrape occasionally, and trips take a little longer. But the water is always beautifully clear.

Shorten up your trip. Canoeist will have to step out of their canoes from time to time, but even at this level the river can still be quite enjoyable if you take your time.