The Lower Piney described here begins at the Rose Mill Rd. bridge (Rte. 674) over the Piney River. The take-out is on the Tye River along South Powell Island Rd. There are several possible take-out options here depending on current "Posted" signage. Note that a trip on this section begins on the Piney and ends on the Tye River a few miles below the confluence with that stream.
At most flows this section is mostly a class II float with an occasional class III move but, as with most streams, there is always the possibility that a fallen tree around a corner could turn this pleasant float into a sudden scramble to avert disaster. Be alert and only attempt this stream with solid paddling skills, equipment, and basic swimming ability. Etc., Etc...
If your group is inexperienced, or you would like a less technical float, you may want to consider the Lower Tye River, or the Upper Rockfish River. Both are nearby and usually run about the same time as the Piney.
Above 400 cfs this stream gets busy and will start to feature some significant hydraulics. A section about a quarter-mile downstream of Rose Mill bridge may have some surfing and play potential for strong whitewater paddlers at 400 cfs or higher.
This float is almost entirely wooded and private. This makes for a quiet, scenic float for canoeists and kayakers with intermediate skills.
Put-in: On the river-right bank immediately below the Rose Mill Bridge. Respect private property and the surrounding community.
Take-out: South Powell Island Rd. at the GPS coordinates listed on this page. This and all other options on South Powell Island Rd. may involve private property, so be respectful and do not trespass.
There is a painted "RC" gauge on the Rose Mill Rd. bridge (downstream, river-right piling) but we use the USGS Piney River @ Piney River, VA gauge. A flow of 150 cfs is a decent minimum. Trips have reportedly been made as low as 80 cfs, but that may involve walking boats through shallow sections. Recently the RC gauge was at the 1' mark with a flow of around 300 cfs. This was a fine level. We have not paddled this section above 400 cfs so I cannot comment on anything over that flow. This is a narrow streambed so difficulty will increase quickly as flows ramp upward.
Permits are not required for this reach.
We have no additional detail on this route.
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