Stand-up paddleboarding is an activity "that's very accessible to all kinds of people," Moore said.
Most people are able to get on top of a board and start paddling within a few hours after receiving initial instruction. Popular flat-water SUP locales in West Virginia include Summersville Lake, where Seiler gives lessons on the basics of the sport, Hawks Nest Lake, and the pool in the New River between Fayette Station Bridge and Fayette Station Rapids, where a series of SUP races was held on Thursday.
Riding a stand-up paddleboard downriver through rapids gives veteran kayak paddlers a new way to ramp up their adrenalin levels.
"It's one of the fastest-growing sports happening now," said Haley Mills, a Kentucky native and a member of the U.S. Freestyle Kayak Team, who tours the world to compete in kayak and SUP events. "You can do SUP on oceans, rivers and lakes. You don't have to travel far to find a place to go, and you don't need a lot of gear."
At Wednesday's event, SUP riders were able to try out demo boards in varying shapes, sizes and performance capabilities.
"I've done this on flat water, but not in a place like this," said former Charleston resident Rachel Kutskill, now of Fayetteville, who was among those checking out demo boards after watching the surfing action on Perfect Wave. "I think I'll be spending a lot of time in the water today," she said with a laugh.
"Since the sport is really new, they're always tweaking board design to see what works best," said Moore. "This gives people the chance to sample what's out there."
"This is the most public attention our secret little spot has had so far," said Seiler. "I'm hoping that, by next year, we'll be able to hold a competition here."
Meanwhile, she said, there are a number of other known standing waves to sample in West Virginia's whitewater country, "and so many others that haven't been discovered."
Reach Rick Steelhammer at rsteelham...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5169.