Ran Pigeon from 209 bridge to New Hepco bridge. Not any significant rapids before the confluence with Jonathans Creek, The best combination would be to run Jonathans from the class III down to New Hepco. 600 cfs would probably be a minimum on the Hepco gauge.
Put in on Jonathans creek behind the fire station, and ran it to the Pigeon and then followed the Pigeon to near Waterville Lake. Took out at the New Hepco Bridge, Fines Creek Rd. We had 1” of rain in Maggie Valley the day before, and the USGS Gauge on the Pigeon near Hepco was reading 850 CFS. Passed a landowner near where the Jonathans Creek gauge near White Oak used to be, she said at one time they were considering damming Jonathans Creek near the confluence with the Pigeon, (or maybe the Pigeon itself) so the gauge was for a temporary flow study. Not much on Jonathans, one set of drops about 1+ miles below I-40 bridge as mentioned by Dave, otherwise nothing even of new school class II. At the confluence I noticed the water temperature was close to 15° warmer.
Several noteworthy drops that were not listed on the AWA section for the Pigeon E & W Confluence to New Hepco Bridge. Of course having a good volume of water on the Pigeon, and getting a back ender in a rather juicy hole affected my rating. I would rate one drop a solid III+ (the surprise hole and ender). Other than a bit of a hike at the bridge it is an under valued section. We had run a section of the Pigeon upstream (from confluence of Richland Creek) and became bored, getting out after a few miles before anything fun started, so I was surprised to find some fun rapids. I hope someone will run it from NC 209 on down, looked like a good rapid downstream of that bridge where we got out.
Tell us about this gauge by leaving a comment.
Permits are not required for this reach.
We have no additional detail on this route.
Use the map below to calculate how
to arrive to the main town from your zipcode.
Shredding the Pigeon
Phil on the Hepco
If someone gets hurt on a river, or you read about a whitewater-related injury, please report it to
American Whitewater. Don't worry about multiple submissions from other witnesses, as our safety
editors will turn multiple witness reports into a single unified accident report.
Log into the American Whitewater website and you can contribute to river descriptions,
flow and access tips, and maps associated with runs you've done. You can even add new
runs to the inventory!