In 1992, Dewey Heffner and his son George started selling black tire tubes out of their truck under a sign that read, "Butts Tubes." Through the years, the seed of this roadside tubing company sprouted 11 different outdoor activities and matured into Harpers Ferry Adventure Center.
At Harper's Adventure Center, single- and multiday adventures fuse adrenaline-packed thrills with the scenery of the Potomac and Shenandoah River regions. More than 100 species of birds, 60 types of butterflies, and flocks of wild birthday balloons fill the sky on hiking trails, which wind through hilly terrain. The crashing sound of Bull Falls forms the soundtrack for whitewater-rafting trips, and treetop canopies serve as the decor for ziplining.
Drawing from these activities, Harpers Ferry Adventure Center's crew can design custom adventure packages or help customers to choose a predesigned trip. They also lead team-building retreats using outdoor activities to teach universal skills such as working toward a common goal or ziplining to the stage for business presentations.
Say the zombie apocalypse happened tomorrow—what would you do? How would you search for food and water without attracting the attention of a shambling mass? The instructors of Northern Virginia Tactical train people to defend themselves should they ever encounter a life-threatening situation, whether it be advancing zombies or an armed robber. With backgrounds spanning law enforcement to marine reconnaissance, they combine field experience in areas such as practical marksmanship, tactical medicine, and scout sniping with NRA training standards. Using this approach, they teach a suite of courses that covers basic through advanced training in both armed and unarmed self-defense. They also apply their expertise to developing products, including their own line of suppressors. Made of 100% titanium and formed over a genuine minotaur horn, these suppressors are lighter and cool faster than traditional ones, and a patent-pending Quick Attach system enhances ease of use for marksmen.
River & Trail Outfitters owners Lee and Eunsook Baihly have been acquainting customers with the area's natural beauty since 1972. Their outdoor-exploration company's more than 70 friendly staffers accompany customers on relaxed, informative rafting, kayaking, canoeing, biking, and tubing excursions. In addition to having mastered river- and boat-safety skills, staff members are experienced in first aid, CPR, and the correct way to ask dolphins for directions. River & Trail Outfitters also accommodates businesses, organizing team-building events and rock wall rentals or hiking trips. The Baihlys' environmental commitment extends to an in-house recycling program and the use of biodiesel fuels.