Little River

Posted by Spalding Hurst

April 9, 2005

680cfs

So after a quick few days of planning I ended up on my way to Tennessee at 7am to run the Little river in the Smokies. I met up with John along the way and transfered my gear to his truck. Then at the Elkmont campground we met up with Kyle, Gary, Paul, Meryl and Stephanie from the Vikings. This day we ran a 10 mile section from Elkmont to the Sinks. It was a fantastic run with non stop class II the whole way, the whitewater never stopped, never. And there were 3 real good class III+ rapids mixed in there.

I wasn’t expecting those, but not knowing they were there only helped in running them. It was after you finished the rapid that you look back and realized what it was. The craziest one was hidden from the road, which normally runs the entire length of the river. The river becomes about 4 feet wide in a fast chute that falls on it’s self. I ended up backwards half way through but managed to stay upright. In fact I never flip this day, so I never had to test my roll on my newly healed right shoulder. Plenty of times where I almost did though. That rapid before the Meanies especially. It was a hard right turn that comes very unexpectedly, where the water rides along the side of a rock, I was all the way under that rock wall on my side scraping my other side against it going through. I had to hold the top brim of the rock to stay up right. John fractured his canoe repair this day, thus re-exposing his canoe leak. Kyle then ran the Sinks while we watched. We camped after eating a steak dinner in Gatlinburg and then drove on home Sunday morning. Great run that could be run from anywhere to anywhere due to the roadside pull offs the whole way. We should go back if there is enough water in it. It was a little low this day at 680cfs. Very boney and technical. We even had a couple of pins. The right amount of water should make the run a little easier. Plus there is a class II section down lower.

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