Gradients from Topo map
From the Lake Sequoyah to Buck Creek:
1st 0.5 mi: 200 ft.
next mile: 120 ft.
next mile: 60 ft.
next mile: 120 ft.
next mile: 300 ft.
next mile: 60 ft.
next mile: 140 ft.See also: Other sections of the Cullasaja:0. Above the lakes (Class IV-V+)1. Upper (Lake Sequoyah to below Cosmic Crunch) (Class )2. Middle (Below Cosmic Crunch to Above Cullasaja Falls) (Class IV(V+))4. Peeks Creek Rd (NC-1678) to Peaceful Cove Rd (NC-1677) (Class II(III))5. Peaceful Cove Rd (NC-1677) to Fulton Rd (NC-1668) (Class I-II)
Wood Update November 18, 2006 5.5 ft
The middle is go to go but the Lower is a different story, we hiked down to the first 4 drops (down to eclipse) and only one had a clean line, every other drop has horribly placed wood. First falls has a big log in the entrance, and eclipse has an easily removable tree blocking the whole river above first boof. Enjoy
the entrance to eclipse has changed due to flooding, several ill placed boulders will make it a challenging new line. double boof, aka trash can is no longer a go. at 4.8' all the water still pushed right into an undercut sharp protruding rock. a mandatory portage for anyone who doesnt want to get slammed. portage river right. the lead in to whale tail is cleaner than before and still good to go. be careful out there.
cullasaja -- update... New
Date: Sep 27 2004, 21:42 GMT
this might have been posted already. many changes on the lower of mention. trees in 1st rapid. new ODDLY placed boulders above ecliipse. jerry curl has adjusted its "jerry curl". most of all TRASHCAN! this is now the ugliest rapid on the river. 5 foot sloping drop into pinny pillow area with all the water washing to the right of the large boulder sending you towards a jagged, overhanging, undercut, jaw snather of a boulder @4.1. it will probably be passable @ 4.5 and above. wash out of trashcan leads directly into whale-tail with very few eddies in between. the nasty reputation of the lower cullasaja just got worse.
The Cullasaja ... New
Re: cullasaja -- update... unipaddle New
Re: lower cullasaja BSK New
Date: Sep 28 2004, 0:39 GMT
The Cullasaja is broken into three distinct sections (for whitewater boating): the Upper, Middle, and Lower.
Upper: 3 Big drops at the beginning, several portages (including Dry Falls), some flatwater, a little class III/IV, and then some solid V/V+ stuff from Nemesis and Bricklayer down to Cosmic Crunch (which is realistically a VI).
Middle: Some Class IV boulders garden stuff below Cosmic Crunch, some class III boogie through semi-tight slots, one small drop, two 8 foot drops (both IV's above 4.5), some Class III boogie, T-Bone (a Class IV+/V) multi-tiered drop, some more Class III boogie, a mile or so of flatwater, a small gorge with Class III+/IV moves (above 4.5 it is Class IV, and only gets tougher as more water comes in), then some ledges in front of the rock shop; there are 3 more Class V rapids below the rock shop, and directly above the big falls, but very few people run them- if you screw up and swim you could end up flushing down over Cullasaja Falls (over 200 ft multi- tiered drop).
Lower: put in at the base of Cullasaja Falls; you have many Class V/V+ rapids for over a mile. The famous ones are Double Drop, Eclipse, Next Time, and Whale Tale, but there are many more stacked in there. It is a serious creek run. The takeout is the Peeks Creek Bridge.
I grew up in Franklin (live away now though), and have been paddling the Cullasaja for about 8 years, so I am very familiar with the majority of the run. I have paddled alot of the Upper, all of the Middle (many, many times), and from below Whale Tale down on the Lower (we hiked in from Peeks Creek- I'm not a good enough creeker to even consider the rest of the Lower still). That river is beautiful, powerful, and dangerous, so be careful on it; I see alot of people posting on here about it these days.
Our group ran this last Saturday (9/11/2004) at somewhere around 4.6' on the USGS gauge. We've run this section down to 4.0' and all of us agreed that 4.6' is the best level we've run it at so far. Everything is a little more padded out. There is a small stick in the right side run out of First Drop since the rainfall from Hurricane Frances, but it is easily avoided. Be careful on this creek, though, because it is sick.
Date: Mar 21 2003, 01:08
The tree below Whale Tale is gone.
There is wood on the bottom right below first drop (only a problem above 5').
The second rapid below Next Time has a tree just under the water. Ran it today @ 5'3" not visable.
ok, so on March 3, at 4:30pm, peeks creek was reading a foot, usgs was around 4.0 or 4.25; and the gauge on the downstream bridge piling at route 1620 (where the USGS gauge is) was reading 6.9
Visually i thougth the level looked moderate on the upper and the middle, and stomping on the lower.
From Clay Wright on the Perception website:
Posted - Dec 12 2001 : 22:00:14
So much rain, but . . .
Tried for Raven's but low water alternative Cullasaja proved a technical roadsite treat.
The put-in one of the most spectacular in the SE: just off the highway but down a steep, spray-swept trail to the base of a 70+ foot unrunnable waterfall. Action starts immediately with a nasty s-turn into a reverse Sunshine style left boof. Lots of impact, though everyone who ran it said it was 'fine'. Beautiful double boof left next, then Eclipse. Another Sunshine-esque rapid, Eclipse ramps 8' into a visible piton-rock. Only a tight right boof allows you to miss most of the rock - enought ot soften the impact. The remaining technical slots should be scouted well, too. Next in the memory was "Next Time" which at this low flow comprised of a mandatory right to left boof into a shallow, narrow corridor. Sweet boof, all aces. Several fun boofs and a whale-tail later we were scraping through class 2 boulders looking for the bridge. Cool run. Short, steep, sharp, sweet.
For added amusement, we drove upstream to the lake and ran the top cascades. This awesome series has been on my list since the Wayne Gentry days and it lives up the videos for sure! The first drop slides 10' but the 2nd 20' flume is only a boat-lengh away. You try and aim left or drag your left blade as you rocket out of this one, cause a low wall off the right bank sends all the water (any you, hopefully) into a 90 deg. left turn leading a 45 deg right turn down a 15' bounding cascade. No video shot this trip, but Daniel D, Al G, Nate E, Tommy H, Pat Keller, Jason Hale and I sessioned it so many times we could've used a time-lapse. Daniel's handpaddling runs were far better than mine. nuff said.
Anyway - another cool roadside class 5 off my 'to do' list. So many more . . . but rain on the way!
4.25' on the USGS gauge is probably about 3/4' on the Peeks Creek gauge. Wouldn't go any lower.
There is a stick across the bottom slot of the first rapid. It looks like you could run the right channel if you had more water than we did (3/4' at peek's creek bridge). There was also wood blocking the top of the sneak at Eclipse and across a small drop just below next time.
From Brad Roberts of Boater Talk:
Very hard, dangerous, class 5-6.
We break up the run into three sections.
Upper is from the lake to above the unrunnable falls.
Middle is from below Nemesis to above the 200-foot unrunnable falls. Don't miss that last eddy.
Then there is the lower. 600 plus feet a mile. 10-foot pools followed by 20-foot drops. Its from the base of the big falls to the bridge two miles downstream.
Don't do the lower until you are bored on the Green Narrows.
Be especially careful around the drops called Eclpise (similar but worse than Sunshine) which has nasty siphon/undercut in it, and 15 feet downstream the waterfall known as Next Time. After the first 6 drops it eases up a little. To hard class 5, that is......
Be careful out there.
Its been scrapped down as low as 3.6, but most like to see a bit over 4.0 to pad things out.
4.6 has been stated as the optiomal level. Pads things out and covers some bad undercuts.
Its been run up to some pretty stupid levels.
The gauge is located at the SR 1620 bridge, near Vanhook Wayside Park and the take-out for the Upper Cullasaja.
There is also a gauge on the RT 1678 (Peeks Creek Road) take-out Bridge. One foot here is close to 4ft on the USGS
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Eclipse at 4.5
Cullasaja Rapid #1 - The Slot - Video
Cullasaja Rapid #3 - Eclipse, wide view
Cullasaja Rapid #4 - Next Time, again
Cullasaja Rapid #4 - Next Time
Cullasaja Rapid #2 - Double Drop, reverse
Cullasaja Rapid #3 - Eclipse
Cullasaja Rapid #2 - Double Drop
Jeff Cook on Next Time!
Trash Can - Post 2004 Flood
Trash Can on Lower Cullasaja
Whale Tale on Lower Cullasaja
Cullasaja Falls at Flood
1st Drop on Lower Cullasaja
Eclipse on Lower Cullasaja
Double Drop on Lower Cullasaja
Drive to put-it for Lower Cullasaja
Stern Squirt on 2nd Drop
Eclipse - Lower Cullasaja
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