A Canoeing and Kayaking Guide to Kentucky

A Canoeing and Kayaking Guide to Kentucky

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A Canoeing and Kayaking Guide to Kentucky by Bob Sehlinger, Johnny Molloy

At-a-glance information for each river section helps paddlers determine the river that's right for them. Stream overviews, gauge and shuttle information, names of rapids and suggestions on how to run them, along with a little history, make this guide not only an interesting read, but a must for every boater hitting the Kentucky streams.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780897328265
Publisher: Menasha Ridge Press
Publication date: 06/15/2011
Series: Canoe and Kayak Series
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 272
Sales rank: 887,298
File size: 36 MB
Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

About 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.

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.

Table of Contents

Map Listix
The Drainages of Kentucky2
Kentucky Wild Rivers System4
Rating River Difficulty6
American Whitewater River Classification System7
Using River Gauges8
Water Lever Sites8
Hazards and Safety9
Winter Paddling9
Cold-Weather Survival10
Paddler Information11
Rating the Paddler11
Knowing Your Rights on the River15
Environmental Concerns16
Using This Guide17
Map Legend19
Part 1Streams of the Eastern Coal Fields
Russell Fork21
Levisa Fork of the Big Sandy Fork25
Johns Creek30
Little Sandy River32
Tygarts Creek36
Part 2The Licking River and Its Tributaries
North Fork of the Licking River38
Middle Fork of the Licking River40
Hinkston Creek46
Stoner Creek48
South Fork of the Licking River50
Licking River53
Part 3The Kentucky River and Its Tributaries
North Fork of the Kentucky River56
Middle Fork of the Kentucky River64
Red Bird River68
South Fork of the Kentucky River70
Kentucky River below the Forks73
Red River86
Four Mile Creek92
Lower Howard's Creek94
Boone Creek96
Hickman Creek98
Jessamine Creek102
Dix River104
Hanging Fork of the Dix River106
Gilbert Creek108
Benson Creek110
South Fork of Elkhorn Creek113
North Fork of Elkhorn Creek114
Elkhorn Creek116
Eagle Creek118
Part 4Creek Drainages of Madison County
Calloway Creek120
Muddy Creek122
West Fork/Main Stem of Otter Creek125
East Prong of Otter Creek127
Silver Creek130
Tates Creek133
Part 5The Cumberland River and Its Tributaries
Poor Fork of the Cumberland River135
North Fork of the Cumberland River137
Laurel River145
Rockcastle River147
Buck Creek153
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 River160
Rock Creek162
Cumberland River from Wolf Creek Dam to the Tennessee Border164
Part 6The Salt River System of the Western Bluegrass
Salt River166
Plum Creek170
Floyds Fork of the Salt River172
Rolling Fork of the Salt River175
Beech Fork of the Rolling Fork of the Salt River177
Part 7Headwaters of the Green River
Green River179
Russell Creek186
Barren River188
Drakes Creek192
Gasper River195
Little Barren River197
Nolin River200
Part 8Streams of the Western Coal Fields
Tradewater River204
Pond River206
Panther Creek208
Rough River210
Mud River214
Green River from Houchins Ferry to the Ohio River216
Part 9Streams of Land Between the Lakes
Cumberland River north of Lake Barkley221
Tennessee River north of Kentucky Lake223
Muddy Fork of the Little River224
Little River226
Land Between the Lakes Paddle Route227
Part 10Streams of the Jackson Purchase
Bayou du Chien232
Obion Creek234
Mayfield Creek236
Clarks River238
Part 11Waters of Special Mention
Ballard Wildlife Management Area240
Red River of Logan County242
Harrods Creek of Oldham and Jefferson Counties244
Little Kentucky River246
Other Paddling Streams246
Appendix AAmerican Whitewater Safety Code249
Appendix BOutfitters256
Appendix CClubs258
Appendix DGlossary269
About the Authors267

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