Modern Living: Beating the New River

On narrow creeks and wide rivers, Americans in unprecedented numbers are bobbing about in rubber rafts this summer. Many novices prudently do their paddling on calm waterways. The more daring seek the kind of white-water thrills and risks depicted in the movie Deliverance (though the protagonists used canoes). For these one must go to killers like the Colorado or the New River in West Virginia, which the Indians called the River of Death. Its violent rapids still claim inexperienced challengers almost every year (15 drowned in 1971, three last year). A number of guide services have sprung up along the New...

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