BY PAIGE ATWELL
Just short of an hour and a half drive out of Williamson County, explorers, locals and visitors alike will find Caney Fork River: Approximately 144 miles of blissful stream and peaceful scenery. On its banks nestled in Silver Point, Tennessee lies Canoe the Caney - the ultimate river adventure.
Owned by Jason Carver, Canoe the Caney has been in business since 1999. While it started out as a jet ski and boat rental company and marine repair shop, it later branched out in 2008, to offer paddle sports and canoe and kayak river trips.
“Customers can expect to have fun, create memorable moments, make new friends, eat good food and overall have excursions that exceed their expectations,” said Director of Sales and Marketing Billie Davis. “All of our crew are heavily invested in providing a great customer experience and work hard to make sure that happens for every one of our guests.”
Canoe the Caney has a short season, so they are always looking for ways to expand so that even more people can enjoy it. Being a big fan of Halloween, Jason decided it was time to create a trip with a spooky twist.
“In 2010 we were having some work done on our property and the father of one of the workers stopped by,” explained Billie. “We struck up a conversation, and he started telling us about how he had lived his entire life in this area. He told us that the ‘old timers’ used to tell tales of strange occurrences that began to happen soon after the land was flooded. As he talked, I actually got chills and just felt like there was something to what he was saying. We started researching the area and meeting with some locals as well as a local historian. We found so many interesting things about the area and the history behind it. Then we just had to put the pieces together. The first Haunted Canoe Trip launched in 2012.”
Unlike most local Halloween experiences, the Haunted Canoe Trip isn’t set up with actors or machines to scare you. Instead, it’s 100% based on candid paranormal activity, which makes each ride and guest experience unique. The tour starts with a local storyteller taking guests on a guided trip through what was once an old military recreation base, where they will explain the same stories and paranormal experiences that lead Canoe the Caney to start offering this ride.
If that’s not enough to spook you, the next activity includes boarding a canoe, where guides will help you paddle out past the old dock into ‘Cemetery Cove,’ which is known for its unexplained paranormal activity. Oh, and did we mention it all takes place in the dark?
“Many people have reported seeing or hearing things on the tour,” said Billie. “Sudden, quick changes in air temperature have been noticed as well. Almost everyone tells us during the walking portion of the tour they have felt a ‘presence,’ as if someone was standing next to them. Some have said they’ve seen a shadow of someone passing by. We’ve even had people who took pictures and said that after they got home and looked at them, they saw ghostly figures in them. We’ve also encountered cell phones and radios that just go out or the phone screens ‘ghost’ over.”
The haunted canoe trip begins the last weekend of September and runs through the first weekend of November. Guests can sign up for a ride on Friday and Saturday nights, with some potential for Thursday and Sunday night openings. Canoe the Caney does encourage people to book as soon as possible, as trips sell out fast. For more information about the ride or to book your spot, visit canoethecaney.com
Canoe the Caney | 17055 Smithville Highway | Silver Point, TN 38582