Nolichucky, North Carolina, US/Tennessee, US
|Usual Difficulty||III-IV (for normal flows)|
|Avg. Gradient||31 fpm|
|Max Gradient||57 fpm|
|NOLICHUCKY RIVER AT EMBREEVILLE, TN|
|usgs-03465500||500 - 4500 cfs||III-IV||01h07m||2360 cfs (running)|
The Nolichucky is in an incredibly beautiful, deep, mountain gorge that offers lots of great
play, especially within the first few miles. The Noli's punch is at the beginning, then it
mellows out to a mostly class III run allowing ample opportunity to enjoy the scenery. The gorge
is remote with the only opportunity to walk out by a railroad track that parallels the river.
Parking at the takeout: Boaters can park at the Nolichucky Gorge Campground for a fee (which includes a hot shower - nice on a cold winter day) or at USA Raft / Mountain River Guides. As of 2018 "day use", which includes parking at the Nolichucky Gorge Campground is $4 per person (not per car) and includes access to the showers and changing rooms. You can also park at USA Raft; it is $5/day per vehicle (not per person). Free parking is available about 3/4 mile downstream at the US Forest Service Chestoa day use area. It's not bad but a little less secure than USA Raft or the campground.
For further information and the most incredibly accurate and specific shuttle directions known to the western world, see Chris Bell's excellent boatingbeta.com website.
Shuttle Information / Shuttles The one-way shuttle takes about 30 minutes meaning an hour at the end of your day if you don't use a shuttle service. Given the time, gas, and wear & tear on your vehicle, most boaters choose to use a shuttle service rather than make a 2nd trip at the end of the day. You pick up a pre-arranged shuttle driver at the takeout, then you drive to the put-in with the driver. While you are on the river, the driver drops your vehicle off at the takeout. There are other options, described below where you don't use your own vehicle. For all the shuttle services, give them some advance notice--like when you leave you house in the am and on busy weekends the day before.
USA Raft / Mountain River Guides offers a variety of options. First is getting a shuttle driver for $25 and a $5 parking fee for each car left at the USA Raft takeout. Another option for larger groups is to use their driver and van (for up to 13 people) for $70. Other options are a 7 passenger truck & trailer for $50 and a 42 passenger bus for $150. The options where USA provides the vehicle are by reservation only. Their phone is 800-872-7238 or http://www.usaraft.com/ . If you park there or use their shulle vehicle, you can use their changing room, showers, and hot tub. They also have a variety of camping / lodging options.
Uncle Johnny's Hostel - has shuttle drivers for the same $25. You can park at the Hostel or at Chestoa (preferred). Phone - 423-735-0548. E-mail Unclejohnnys2000@yahoo.com
Private Shuttle Drivers - So far I have Jan & Matt Buzan, who live at the takeout. They have day jobs and are not always available but usually one of them is available.phone 386-801-0331. Hoping to expand the list of private shuttle drivers over time.
|Mile||Rapid Name||Class||Features (Legend)|
|0.3||Last Chance a.k.a. Entrance||III+|
|0.6||On The Rocks||III+|
|4.9||Railroad Wall a.k.a. Lost Cove||III|
|5.3||Sousehole a.k.a. Maggie's Rock||III|
|8.0||Nolichucky Gorge Campground||I|
Scout from the small beach on river left. The initial 3-4' drop is run from right to left on the tongue, then immediately go left or right to avoid a large rock. Going left is usually the easier of the two. Going right there are two slots to choose from, usually the first is too hard to hit without prior knowledge of its location, so most go with the second slot which is a 2-3' drop. At EXTREMELY low levels beware of undercut hazards here; however at normal to high flows the undercuts don't pose a major problem. Also, don't run the initial drop far left...pin city. Good recovery pool at the bottom. Depending on the water level many fun waves can be found toward river right all the way to Jaws.
Identified by a large rock outcropping on river right and preceded by a good playspot on river right after a long pool. Start this rapid on far river right angling left to avoid the hole quickly downstream on the right. Eddy out on the right just past the hole and get big enders if you've got a boat with some length to it, but roll fast. From this eddy, ferry hard towards the left to cut behind a large rock located downstream left of center.
Rollercoaster is divided into an upper and lower. They're basically super boogie water, stay just left of center and dodge a couple of holes and everything is groovy. There is brief section of slackish water separating upper and lower. At moderate water levels and up a fast wave from 2-4 feet forms at the bottom of upper Rollercoaster.