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Our Mission

is to glorify God by proclaiming His Word so as to cultivate in people a passion to intimately know God, resulting in a heart of worship, a desire for purity, and a Christ-centered vision for their lives.
Children and teens live in a crazy, busy world. School, sports, homework, extracurricular activities, friendships, recreation, and social media all vie for their attention.

But living in this high-tech, fast-paced, win-at-all-cost culture can leave its scars on young people. Loneliness, rejection, low self-esteem, pressure to perform, and fear of the future are some of the struggles that cause anxiety and heartbreak. In addition to these struggles, students are growing up in a culture that often attacks their faith and undermines the Christian values we all cherish. Doe River Gorge desires to partner with parents and youth leaders to help children and teens navigate through these formative and challenging years. From the time a student enters second grade until they graduate from college, Doe River Gorge offers sequential, age-appropriate summer camps that will inspire, educate, encourage, and equip students to be all they can be. In this fun, loving, and caring refuge, students have time to grasp their value and worth, discover their gifts and abilities, develop Christ-like character, and meet God in life-changing ways.

Explore the sequential program list to find the launching point for the young person you love. Working together, we can raise up a generation of young people who live lives for the glory of God.

Come to Doe River Gorge where you will be

You will come away with a love for life, a love for others, and a love for God. You will discover that real joy comes from living for Christ, and you will be better equipped to take a stand for the values that bring real happiness and meaning.
You will be uplifted and encouraged as you find yourself surrounded by friendly, smiling faces ready to help you have one of the best times of your life. It is a place where you will be valued, nurtured, uplifted, and encouraged; a place where you will be accepted regardless of how you look or what you have; a place where no one is put down or bullied or ridiculed. Doe River Gorge is a place where you will be celebrated for the unique person that God created you to be.
"I enthusiastically endorse the ministries of Doe River Gorge. Their love for young people, cutting edge programming, loving staff and unshaken belief that God's Word is the best thing to give today's youth is making a strategic difference. For all of us who are rooting for the next generation, Doe River Gorge is our kind of place."
Joseph M. Stowell
President, Cornerstone University
President, Moody Bible Institute (1987-2004)


East Tennessee & Western North Carolina Railroad

Scenic rail trips into the Doe River gorge are part of summer Day Quest Saturday programs.
September - May: call 423.725.4010 to charter a trip for a group of any size.


for Personal & Spiritual Growth
Since its inception, Doe River Gorge has been a series of God's miraculous provisions. He has provided in ways and at times that could only have come from His hand. He has done "exceeding abundantly beyond all that we could have asked or thought...to Him be the glory forever and ever."

This written history is meant to glorify God and Him only. Names of people He has used to accomplish His will are simply servants who have been honored and humbled to be a part of His work. This history is still being written and will not be complete until He returns.

Since his college years, Terry Maughon had a dream of beginning a new ministry in East Tennessee for the purpose of reaching young people for Christ. During his years of training at Moody Bible Institute and working in camps during the summer, his dream was greatly enhanced. In 1981, working as a youth minister for Grace Fellowship Church in Johnson City, Tennessee he began conducting summer camp programs using rented facilities. As these programs grew from year to year, others began to see the need and value for an expanded ministry and a new facility.

Two of those who would become instrumental in the formation and development of Doe River Gorge were Dr. Larry Graham and Mr. Jeff Blackburn. For several years, both of these gentlemen had encouraged Terry to pursue his vision and had joined with him in praying for God's will and timing. Through the encouragement and prayer support of Larry and Jeff, as well as that of many friends, God began to work in miraculous ways to bring this dream to reality.

In 1985, Terry and a friend, Gary Gilliam, hiked the Doe River Gorge. As they walked along the old railroad bed they were awed by the beauty and majesty of God's creation as well as the potential to develop programs within the Gorge for the purpose of reaching young people for Christ. When they got to the second trestle bridge, Terry and Gary sat down on the bridge and prayed, "Lord, if there is to ever be a new camp in East Tennessee, it should be here."

A Dream Becomes Reality
In July of 1987, two and one-half miles of property in the scenic Doe River Gorge were purchased at a cost of only one-fourth its appraised value. A new non-profit organization was formed, money began to be raised, and the dream of creating a place to share the love of Christ with young people was on its way to becoming a reality.

Although weekly Bible studies and small weekend retreats began almost immediately there was much work to be done before full-scale summer programs could begin. Site plans had to be developed; buildings and recreational facilities needed to be built; programs had to be planned and staff had to be hired. In addition, the facility had to be maintained. With no money for maintenance, much less development, the task seemed impossible. Many said that it would never happen. But God delights in doing the impossible and almost immediately He went to work.
President, Terry Maughon tells the DRG story

July, 1987

  • Property acquired at one-fourth its appraised value
  • Small group retreats begin
  • An effort to develop a financial base of support is begun

September, 1988

  • Missionary Tech Team is acquired to develop long-range site plan

April, 1991

  • Long-range plan is completed
  • Metric Constructors agree to build mountain, ball fields, lake, roads, plaza, grading of plateau for hobo condos - all for free!

January, 1992

  • CSX Transportation donates five railroad boxcars

October, 1992

  • Metric Constructors completes its projects at the Gorge


  • The Feldspar Corporation donates 2000 tons of white sand for the lake

July, 1993

  • Lake opens

November, 1994

  • Offices are established at the Gorge

December, 1994

  • Terry leaves his position as youth pastor at Grace Fellowship Church to go full-time at DRG
  • Duke Ingram, Buddy Fontaine, Mike Bauguess, and others head up campaign to raise money so that week long programs can begin at DRG

January, 1995

  • Inmates from the Carter County Work Camp begin renovation of railcars into "Hobo Condos"

April, 1995

  • Tepee Village is built

June, 1995

  • First summer of week-long programs known as Adventure Quest begins, 7 years after purchase of property.


  • Over 1 mile of railroad track restored with new cross ties
  • 40 acres of pasture land acquired between main campus and Miracle Mountain
  • Footbridge built across river to access cabins
  • Large riverfront cabin built on south side of Doe River
  • Horses added to programming
  • Antique steam locomotive "Rachel" arrives on loan from Gaylord Entertainment


  • Two small riverfront cabins built on south side of Doe River


  • Single water zipline converted to triple zipline.


  • Water Main installed to cabins across river.
  • Paved access road and office parking areas


  • Office renovation completed
  • New Big Top Tent, audio/visual & stage added
  • Plymouth Diesel Locomotive
  • UNIMOG 4X4 (4x4 ATV) donated
  • Adventure Quest Explorer & LEAD Programs added
  • The Depot Lodge is renovated, bathrooms & storage added
  • New Dining Tent pad completed
  • Storm Drainage-Phase 1- completed
  • began construction of 2 80-bed lodges
  • installed 2 temporary dorm mobile buildings
  • Mountain Board course built on 70 acre tract above lake
  • Via Ferrata adventure activity added


  • Adventure Quest Expedition & Dual Track Programs are added
  • Mountain Meadows Lodge completed
  • Underground Infrastructure: Storm Drains & Electrical completed
  • Landscaping and Lighting of the Depot Plaza completed
  • Electric Railroad Track vehicle is donated


  • Cedar Mountain Lodge completed
  • removed 2 temporary housing units
  • TP village and bath house relocated
  • Health Center installed adjacent to offices
  • Fairmont Railroad Track vehicle donated
  • Regulation Sand Volleyball court constructed near Cedar Mountain Lodge
  • Paintball activity added


  • Vertical challenge course joined with 250' swinging bridge added


  • Gazepees air-conditioned and porch roofs added
  • Maintenance Area Enclosure Maintenance area enclosed with attractive fence and gate
  • Riverfront Beautification riverfront area adjacent to Gazepee Village and maintenance area cleared and transformed into beautiful and useful lawnscape.


  • Hore Arena and Equestrian programs added
  • Mountain Meadows Steps
  • Rifle Range and Riflery program added
  • Gazebo built at river's edge overlooking the Doe River
  • Wakeboarding program added


  • Ford pickups repainted
  • Modular unit for health center donated
  • Unimog replaced with newer, diesel model


  • Exponential Internship program launched with 5 young men and a resident advisor.


  • Acquired donated climbing tower (formerly located on the campus of ETSU)
  • Exponential program expanded to include female interns


  • Added the Mud Course activity
  • Remodeled the Annex dormitory unit for the Exponential program

1995 - 2017

  • 5,536 youth trust Jesus Christ as their personal Savior
  • Thousands of others make decisions that redirect the course of their lives
"Let this be written for a future generation, that a people not yet created may praise the Lord."


Terry Maughon - Founder and President

After graduating from Moody Bible Institute in 1978, Terry helped start Grace Fellowship Church in Johnson City, TN. He served on staff as Youth Minister for 16 years. During that time he conducted summer camps using rented facilities and eventually formed Doe River Gorge Christian Camp and Conference Center. Terry resigned from Grace Fellowship Church in December 1994 to assume full time duties at Doe River Gorge. Terry is married to Karen and they have three children: Kara (married to Mark Page), Danielle and Michael.

Steve Wysong

Steve Wysong is the President of Wysong Enterprises Inc., in Blountville, TN, a leading provider of helicopter customization services. Steve has been a long-time supporter of Doe River Gorge by assisting with various projects including the refurbishing of vehicles and railroad equipment over the years. Steve joined the DRG Board of Directors in 2015. Steve is married to Kim and they have two adult children, Holly and Kelly.

Chuck Lyle

Chuck is a graduate of the University of Tennessee and Cumberland School of Law. He practiced law in Tampa, FL for 13 years before becoming a real estate developer. He and his son have enjoyed Father/Son Challenges and Adventure Quest at Doe River Gorge. He joined the DRG Board of Directors in 2015 and is currently serving as Chief Development Officer for Doe River Gorge. Chuck and his wife Angie have four children: Connor, Catherine, Chase, and Christin.

Jason Poteat

Jason is a graduate of Tennessee Tech University and works as a Software Analyst/Consultant. As a teen, he spent many days at DRG as part of the Grace Fellowship church youth group. Jason is married to Lea Ann and they have one son, Gavin. Jason joined the Board of Directors in 2016.

Steve Kreidt

Steve serves as the Transportation Division Director at KCG Engineering and Planning in Orlando, Florida. His background includes completing minor, major and complex roadway projects and he also has extensive experience developing public involvement programs for transportation projects. Steve and his family have participated in many events at Doe River Gorge, including Father/Son Challenges and Adventure Quest. He joined the DRG Board of Directors in 2015. Steve is married to Wendy and they have four children, Jonathan, Mason, Sammie and Allie.

Ralph Clark

Ralph is a native of Northeast Tennessee, and a graduate of The University of Tennessee in Knoxville with a degree in agriculture. He worked nearly 20 years for CSX Transportation and its predecessors starting on the Clinchfield Railroad. He is the founder of Mountain Empire Auction. He and his wife Jeanne live on their farm and are parents of four children.



Terry Maughon - Founder and President (1987)

Terry graduated from Moody Bible Institute in 1978. He served as Director of Student Ministries at Grace Fellowship Church in Johnson City, TN for 16 years. During that time, he conducted summer camps using rented facilities and eventually formed Doe River Gorge Ministries, where he has served as president since 1994. Terry and his wife, Karen, and have three children: Kara (married to Mark Page), Danielle, and Michael, and wife Sara (Owen).

Ryan Vernon - Program Director (1995)

Worked as a volunteer during development years of Doe River Gorge. After college he became the Activities/Program Director. He and his wife, Jennifer have two sons. family photo | SUPPORT the Vernons

Mark Milbourne - Technical Services (1997)

Graduated from Wheaton College in 1987-Computer Science/Math. Worked for DuPont as a Systems Analyst until 1995. Manages computer and A/V systems and railroad operations. Wife Nancy also served on staff 1996-2000. Two children, Jon (2001) and Kate (2003). (more) Newsletter | family photo | SUPPORT the Milbournes

David Jensen - Ministry Development (2000)

David graduated from East Tennessee State University in August 2000 with a major in Accounting and a minor in Finance (B.B.A.). He spent eight of his growing up years serving with his family as missionaries in Amazonas, Brazil. David and his wife, Kristen met at age 4 and are now enjoying the experience of parenting seven children. He transitioned to his present position from serving as DRG business manager from 2000-2016. button link

David Legge - Maintenance Supervisor (2004)

Graduated with degree in Business Admin. from Marshall University-1991, and bible courses through Moody Bible Institute. David and wife Samantha moved to East Tennessee in 2001 to train with Moody Aviation. They have two daughters, Micah and Hannah, and two sons, Joseph and Jesse. (more) | family photo | SUPPORT the Legges | Newsletter

Joshua Hubbard - Student Director (2010)

Joshua and his wife, Janna, have been involved as: Range Safety Officer, Wilderness and Remote First Aid Instructor, Lifeguard Instructor, Lakefront Director, Security, Registrar and Guest Group Host. (more) | SUPPORT Joshua | Facebook | Newsletter

Scott Freemon – Business Manager (2016)

Scott served as summer staff at Doe River Gorge from 2010-2015. After graduating from the University of Tennessee with a degree in Computer Science in 2013, he assisted in the development of the one-year internship program at DRG. His transition to business manager came over a period of time being mentored by previous DRG business manager, David Jensen.

Jessica Ostrander - Equestrian Director/Maintenance Assistant (2017)

Jessica trained in Parelli Natural Horsemanship methods in 2009. In 2010 she served at Doe River Gorge as Summer Staff and then on full-time staff 2013-15. She returned to her home in WI for 2 years and returned to Doe River Gorge in 2017. (more)

Michael Maughon - Outdoor Education (2017)

Michael worked at Le Reve in Las Vegas before coming on staff at Doe River in order to develop an Outdoor Education program. From his early years he has had a passion for all things outdoors. Michael has a well-developed skill in nature photography which he uses to document his discoveries and observations. Michael is married to Sara (Owen), who was an Exponential intern (2018-19).

Donna Pearce - Guest Services Director (2018)

Graduates of Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, Donna and her husband Art served at Doe River Gorge in the early years before summer camps. Since that time, they have been involved in Christian camps as well as Habitat for Humanity. They have three children and two grandchildren and reside in Kingsport, TN.

Karen Sizemore - Food Service Director (2018)

Karen served on the housekeeping staff beginning in 2007, and in 2018 moved into the food service staff.

Taylor Simounet - Guest Services Host (2018)

Taylor first came as a camper in 2005. Since then, he has served in various capacities including: counselor, teen leadership, summer maintenance, and special volunteer. Taylor graduated from East TN State Univ. in 2016 with a major in Radio, TV, and Film. Taylor is married to Madison (Huff), who has participated in Adventure Quest programs since she was 8 years old and most recently an Exponential intern (2018-9).

Clif and Hannah Jensen - Visual Media/Website (1996)

Camp photographer, videographer, and web site manager. After graduating from Cedarville College and Moody Aviation, he and his wife Hannah were missionaries in Amazonas, Brazil with the Association of Baptists for World Evangelism for 19 years. They have five children and sixteen grandchildren. Hannah helps in the office and with Adventure Quest videos and photography. ( more) SUPPORT the Jensens button link

Matt Kellerman - Maintenance (2012)

Graduated from Moody Bible Institute (2002). Served with Carter County Sheriff's Department. He and wife Tracy have seven children. (more) | SUPPORT Matt | family photo | Blog | Newsletter


Doe River Gorge Ministries finds its very existence by the amazing grace of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Visitors and guests quickly learn that no one person or group is responsible for all that is and happens here.

There is a long list of people and organizations that have had a significant part in our development. We look at each of these as God's personal and awesome involvement in this exciting work, and the list continues to grow.

We thank our God for His provision of so much through these wonderful partners:

Acorn Electric, 403 Rock Ln, Piney Flats, TN 423-538-6007
Rick J. Bearfield, Attorney at Law
, Johnson City, TN 423-282-1006
Blackburn, Childers & Stegall, PLC 801 Sunset Dr Johnson City, TN 423-282-4511
Blossman Gas, 1121 Hwy 19e Bypass, Elizabethton, TN 423-542-3511
Bolton Concrete Products, Johnson City, TN 423-926-5175
Bradford Construction, 226 Sterling Springs Dr. Johnson City, TN 423-282-2566
Carter's Powder Coating, 2116 W G St, Elizabethton, TN 423-542-1150
Chick-Fil-A, Elizabethton TN
Chick-fil-A, Johnson City, TN
Citizens Bank, Elizabethton, TN 423-543-2265
Clinical Pharmacy Services, 101 Dillon Court, Gray, TN 423-477-2440
The Coffee Co. 444 E Elk Ave. Elizabethton, TN 423-542-3438
Contura Energy, 340 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. Bristol, TN 37620
Crowder RV, 4533 Bristol Hwy, Johnson City, TN 37601 800-542-4546
Cumulus Media Tri-Cities, 162 Free Hill Rd, Gray, TN 37615 423-477-1000
Danny Herman Trucking, 339 Cold Springs Rd, Mountain City, TN 800-251-7500
Diversified Power International, LLC, 414 Century Court, Piney Flats, TN 800-334-5091
Earthwork Excavating, Butler, TN 423-768-2197
East Tennessee Rent-Alls, 3711 Bristol Hwy, Johnson City, TN 423-282-3221
Elizabethton Star, 300 N Sycamore St, Elizabethton, TN 423-542-4151
Englewood Lawn & Landscapes, LLC 1032 Fordtown Rd, Kingsport, TN 423-726-2481
Essyx Exhibits and Displays, 1305 Spruce St, Johnson City, TN 423-232-2031
Feldspar Corp. Spruce Pine, NC
Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Tri Cities, TN
Ferguson Enterprises, 3104 Hanover Road, Johnson City TN 423 282-4955
Fine Art Photography, Kingsport, TN 423-367-5850
The Firehouse Restaurant, 627 W Walnut, Johnson City, TN 423-929-7377
Fish Springs Marina, 191 Fish Springs Rd, Hampton, TN 423-768-2336
Gardner Paint Services, 129 LP Auer Rd, Johnson City, TN 423-928-8351
General Shale Brick, Johnson City, TN 423-282-4661
H&S Clutch Rebuilders, 2909 E Oakland Ave, Johnson City, TN 423-282-1141
Harry T Stout Locksmith, 302 Parkway Blvd, Elizabethton, TN 423-972-4637
Hayworth Tire & Auto Service, 4074 Hwy 19 E, Elizabethton, TN 423-543-8566
High Road Digital, 127 Bob Fitz Rd #6, Johnson City, TN 423-900-8424
Host Engineering Inc. 593 AA Deakins Rd, Jonesborough, TN 423-913-2587
IT Decisions LLC, Greenville, TN 423-787-0900
Ingram Financial Services, 1303 Sunset Drive #3, Johnson City, TN 423-854-9684
JCS Remodeling, Inc., Elizabethton, TN 423-543-3093
John A Bullington Company, 801 Sunset Dr, Johnson City, TN, TN 423-854-9277
John Moore General Contractor, 1532 Powder Branch Rd, Johnson City, TN 423-543-6743
Johnson City Honda, 2806 N Roan Street, Johnson City, TN 423-282-5440
Mapes Piano String Company, 1 Wire Mill Rd, Elizabethton, TN 423-543-3195
Merkel Brothers Construction, Greeneville, TN 423-639-3116
Mills Greenhouse & Landscape, Elizabethton, TN 423-543-6677
NN, Inc., 207 Mockingbird Ln, Johnson City, TN 423-434-8300
NorthEast Correctional Facility/Carter County Annex
Phil's Dream Pit, 534 Eastern Star Rd, Kingsport, TN 423-349-6437
Preston Woodworking, 720 Rolling Hills, Johnson City, TN 423-928-9331
PROSIM Engineering, LLC 2102 Forest Drive, Suite 2, Gray, TN 37615
Ronnie's Machine Shop, 2118 W G St, Elizabethton, TN 423-542-0808
Sabre Printers, 325 W Walnut St, Johnson City, TN 423-928-7364
Shoun Lumber, Butler, TN 423-768-2352
The Sleepzone, 3010 Bristol Hwy, Johnson City, TN 423-282-1998
Snap-On Tools Corp, 2045 Stateline Rd. Elizabethton, TN 423-543-5771
Summit Leadership Foundation, Gray, TN 423-737-4926
Toyota of Kingsport 2525 E Stone Dr, Kingsport, TN 423-246-6611
Tri-Cities Lifestyle Center, 316 Marketplace Blvd. Suite 10, Johnson City, TN 423-282-2375
Tysinger Hampton and Partners Inc 3428 Bristol Highway, Johnson City, TN 423-282-2687
Valley Equipment Co. Jonesborough, TN 423-753-3541
Wysong Enterprises, Inc. 2695 TN-75, Blountville,TN 423-325-6900
WCQR Christian Music Radio, 2312 Oak St. Gray, TN 423-239-5093
WJHL News Channel 11, 338 E Main St, Johnson City, TN 423-926-2151

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