Hughes and Hazel, Virginia, US
SR 603 to Rt. 522 Bridge
||II (for normal flows)
Reference - Virginia Whitewater, Roger Corbett, or Classic Virginia Rivers, Ed Grove
The Hughes and Hazel rivers are two beautiful small whitewater streams located about 1 1/2 hours
from the DC metropolitan area. The putin is along SR 603, which parallels the Hughes for a short
distance. The first 4 miles has the best stuff, mainly 1-2 foot ledges nicely scattered throughout
the run. Strainers pop up every mile or so as well. After 4 miles, there is a low water bridge that
must be portaged at all but the lowest levels. It is advisable to scout this bridge beforehand from
SR 644 as it really sneaks up on you.
Paddlers who just want a short top-shelf run can take out here, as the last 5.5 miles can drag a
bit, especially at lower levels. Shortly after the low water bridge, the Hazel flows in from the
left, and you get a few more decent ledges, the first one of which is the largest for this
Unfortunately, the last three miles start to flatten out and have a few challenging strainers. This
adds considerably to the time it takes to run the whole 9.5 miles.
The take out for the entire run is at the Rt. 522 bridge. The shortest way to the putin from the
takeout is to proceed a mile north on 522 and turn left on SR 707 at the convenience store. When
you reach the point where the Hazel runs parallel to the road, you can turn left on 644 and go a
very short distance to scout the low water bridge or set your takeout here. To get to the putin
from this point, take the third very sharp left on 603. After 100 yards, you will cross a small
feeder stream, and right after this on the left is an open area that is a popular putin spot. You
can extend your run by going up 603 a bit further.
StreamTeam Status: Verified
Last Updated: 2002-04-09 06:54:32