Canoeing & Kayaking Guide to Kentucky


Wet your paddle and whet your paddling appetite with the authority on paddling the waterways of Kentucky -- A Canoeing & Kayaking Guide to Kentucky. From the coalfields of eastern Kentucky to Kentucky's western border along the Mighty Mississippi, this redesigned and completely updated guide to paddling the creeks, rivers, and coastal waterways of the Bluegrass State covers thousands of miles of paddling, which ranges in difficulty from scenic floats down the Green to ...
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A Canoeing and Kayaking Guide to Kentucky

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Wet your paddle and whet your paddling appetite with the authority on paddling the waterways of Kentucky -- A Canoeing & Kayaking Guide to Kentucky. From the coalfields of eastern Kentucky to Kentucky's western border along the Mighty Mississippi, this redesigned and completely updated guide to paddling the creeks, rivers, and coastal waterways of the Bluegrass State covers thousands of miles of paddling, which ranges in difficulty from scenic floats down the Green to whitewater runs on the Russell Fork.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780897325653
  • Publisher: Menasha Ridge Press
  • Publication date: 7/1/2004
  • Series: Canoe and Kayak Series
  • Edition number: 5
  • Pages: 267
  • Sales rank: 932,601
  • Product dimensions: 6.28 (w) x 8.86 (h) x 0.79 (d)

Meet the Author

A native of Kentucky, Bob Sehlinger has led canoeing trips throughout eastern North America and is the former president of the Eastern Professional River Outfitters Association. He is the creator of the Unofficial Guide travel series and a recipient of the Lowell Thomas Gold Award for journalistic excellence. Founder and publisher of Menasha Ridge Press, Sehlinger lives in Birmingham, Alabama, where he enjoys mountain biking and playing the drums.

Johnny Molloy is an outdoor writer based in Johnson City, Tennessee. He has averaged over 100 nights in the wild per year since the early 1980's, backpacking and canoe camping throughout the country. He has written numerous hiking and tent camping guides for the southeastern states, Wisconsin and Colorado.
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Read an Excerpt

This section of the river flows through the Daniel Boone National Forest. It is extremely remote and makes a good canoe-camping run at moderate water levels (500-1100 cfs) and a fair whitewater run at higher levels (1100-1900). This section has been designated as a Kentucky Wild and Scenic River.

As the river passes Williamsburg, rock replaces the muddy bottom found in upper sections of the river, and it continues to widen in places to almost 200-feet across. The gradient also increases, creating some mild whitewater (Class II), with boulders in the stream and some shoals spanning the entire width of the river. The current runs swift and continuously, with very few pools. Boulders line the banks in increasing numbers and some flat, accessible terraces have been carved along the streamside.

As the Cumberland begins to enter the deep gorge that will carry it over the falls and beyond to lake Cumberland, exposed rock palisades become visible on the right. About one mile upstream of the falls, the river curves sharply to the left and the KY 90 bridge becomes visible downstream. Move to the right of the river for the take-out on the upstream side of the bridge (at the picnic ground and parking lot). Failure to move promptly to the right can have tragic consequences for the unlucky or inexperienced.

One of the larger shoals (Class II) of this section is situated across the entire river just upstream of the take-out. If you run the shoals on the left, and fill up or capsize, you will find yourself in the main current heading for the entrance rapids to Cumberland Falls several hundred yards downstream. If you run the shoals on the right and take water or turn over, youwill be in much slower current. Except at excessive levels (1900 cfs or higher), you will be washed into the bank as the river narrows near the bridge, or alternately, swept downstream past the bridge into a huge eddy that forms along the bank near the visitor's parking lot.
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Table of Contents

Map List ix
Acknowledgments xii
Introduction 1
The Drainages of Kentucky 2
Kentucky Wild Rivers System 4
Rating River Difficulty 6
American Whitewater River Classification System 7
Using River Gauges 8
Water Lever Sites 8
Hazards and Safety 9
Winter Paddling 9
Cold-Weather Survival 10
Paddler Information 11
Rating the Paddler 11
Knowing Your Rights on the River 15
Environmental Concerns 16
Using This Guide 17
Map Legend 19
Part 1 Streams of the Eastern Coal Fields
Russell Fork 21
Levisa Fork of the Big Sandy Fork 25
Johns Creek 30
Little Sandy River 32
Tygarts Creek 36
Part 2 The Licking River and Its Tributaries
North Fork of the Licking River 38
Middle Fork of the Licking River 40
Hinkston Creek 46
Stoner Creek 48
South Fork of the Licking River 50
Licking River 53
Part 3 The Kentucky River and Its Tributaries
North Fork of the Kentucky River 56
Middle Fork of the Kentucky River 64
Red Bird River 68
South Fork of the Kentucky River 70
Kentucky River below the Forks 73
Red River 86
Four Mile Creek 92
Lower Howard's Creek 94
Boone Creek 96
Hickman Creek 98
Jessamine Creek 102
Dix River 104
Hanging Fork of the Dix River 106
Gilbert Creek 108
Benson Creek 110
South Fork of Elkhorn Creek 113
North Fork of Elkhorn Creek 114
Elkhorn Creek 116
Eagle Creek 118
Part 4 Creek Drainages of Madison County
Calloway Creek 120
Muddy Creek 122
West Fork/Main Stem of Otter Creek 125
East Prong of Otter Creek 127
Silver Creek 130
Tates Creek 133
Part 5 The Cumberland River and Its Tributaries
Poor Fork of the Cumberland River 135
North Fork of the Cumberland River 137
Laurel River 145
Rockcastle River 147
Buck Creek 153
Big South Fork Gorge of the Cumberland River (Tennessee) 155
Big South Fork of the Cumberland River (Kentucky) 157
Little South Fork of the Cumberland River 160
Rock Creek 162
Cumberland River from Wolf Creek Dam to the Tennessee Border 164
Part 6 The Salt River System of the Western Bluegrass
Salt River 166
Plum Creek 170
Floyds Fork of the Salt River 172
Rolling Fork of the Salt River 175
Beech Fork of the Rolling Fork of the Salt River 177
Part 7 Headwaters of the Green River
Green River 179
Russell Creek 186
Barren River 188
Drakes Creek 192
Gasper River 195
Little Barren River 197
Nolin River 200
Part 8 Streams of the Western Coal Fields
Tradewater River 204
Pond River 206
Panther Creek 208
Rough River 210
Mud River 214
Green River from Houchins Ferry to the Ohio River 216
Part 9 Streams of Land Between the Lakes
Cumberland River north of Lake Barkley 221
Tennessee River north of Kentucky Lake 223
Muddy Fork of the Little River 224
Little River 226
Land Between the Lakes Paddle Route 227
Part 10 Streams of the Jackson Purchase
Bayou du Chien 232
Obion Creek 234
Mayfield Creek 236
Clarks River 238
Part 11 Waters of Special Mention
Ballard Wildlife Management Area 240
Red River of Logan County 242
Harrods Creek of Oldham and Jefferson Counties 244
Little Kentucky River 246
Other Paddling Streams 246
Appendix A American Whitewater Safety Code 249
Appendix B Outfitters 256
Appendix C Clubs 258
Appendix D Glossary 269
Index 261
About the Authors 267
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