New - 12. McCreery to Thurmond

New, West Virginia, US


12. McCreery to Thurmond (Upper New)

Usual Difficulty II-III (for normal flows)
Length 15 Miles


Photo by Bob Anderson

Gauge Information

Name Range Difficulty Updated Level
usgs-03185400 1.25 - 10.00 ft II-III 01h04m 7.86 ft (running)

River Description

The National Park Service calls Silo Rapids class 3. Ledges is also a class 3.

NPS Guide to paddling the New River

NPS map of the New & Gauley Rivers

This is a great mild whitewater run. For instance, it's a good run for those who don't feel up to either the Upper or Lower Gauley at fall release levels. All rapids are straightforward and are easily boat-scoutable. The few mild holes and hazards can all be avoided by staying river center. There is supposedly an undercut rock on the river-right bank at the bottom of Silo rapid.

There is a great side excursion about halfway into the run. Dowdy Ck enters on river right through a tunnel and there is waterfall you can walk up to and underneath (picture of waterfall). Commercial trips often stop here to eat lunch on river left and afterwards take their guests to the waterfall across the river.

Posted by UncleFuzzy to BoaterTalk:
McCreery to Stone Cliff (most paddlers take out at Stone Cliff for an 11.1-mile float, not at Thurmond for a 15-miler)

Cross to the river-right side on Route 41 and turn left onto CR-25, then follow it all the way to Stone Cliff.

Or take Route 41 south (toward Beckley) and then go right on Route 61. When you get to Glen Jean, find CR-25 and take it down to Thurmond.
When you get to Thurmond, CR-25 will turn right and follow the New upstream to Stone Cliff.

StreamTeam Status: Not Verified
Last Updated: 2018-07-13 13:01:31

Rapid Summary

Mile Rapid Name Class Features (Legend)
4.0Dowdy CreekWaterfall Photo
11.1Stone Cliff TakeoutTakeout

Rapid Descriptions

Dowdy Creek

Dowdy Ck Falls

Dowdy Ck Falls
Photo by Bob Anderson

See the main reach description. Stop here for a short hike and a look at Dowdy Creek Falls.
Lat/longitude data from; not checked with GPS.

Stone Cliff Takeout
You want an extra four miles of flatwater? Then take out at Thurmond.

User Comments

Users can submit comments.
May 17 2018 (246 days ago)
Doug AckermanDetails
The comment about it being four miles from Stonecliff to Thurmond is way off. I remember it as
being around a mile. Google Earth says 1.25 miles. It is not such a long way to paddle on a nice
day. I did it many times in a large commercial raft. Stonecliff is certainly more convenient if you
don't live at the Thurmond takeout.
April 7 2013 (2112 days ago)
Charles and Nancy BrabecDetails
The USGS is no longer supporting the gauge at Thurmond. This means that AW is no longer able to
show the level and flow for all sections of the New downstream from Hinton.
July 2 2011 (2757 days ago)
x (1)
the waves at silo can waterlog u did it in open 14 ft canoe next time ill throw a couple of strn
pry in the stroke mix
November 13 2010 (2988 days ago)
michael mowrerDetails
Just wanted to post some rapid names. These are the rapids from McCreery or Prince. These are the
names used by most outfitters, but some have multiple. If you know them by other names, feel free
to ad to this list. Rapid Name- Class. Entrance Rapid- 2+ Photo Rapid- 2+ (photos taken on left)
Army Camp beach on Right Ripple 1- 1 Ripple 2- 1 Zipity Do-Da- 2+ Duckie Muncher- 2+/3 381- 2+
(Named for the long gone railroad mile markers) 382- 2+/3 (Dowdy Creek tunnel on Right) Little
Ripple- 1 The Ledges- 2+/3 Thayer Pool- about 1.6 miles long Silo- 3/3+ Metel Chunk- 2+ Clairmont
Ripple- 2/2+ No Name Rapid- 2+ Upper Sandstone Rapid- 2+ Sandstone Rapid- 2 Sandstone Take-Out-
River Left
April 24 2010 (3191 days ago)
fleurvert5 (151743)
This is a beginner section. The water is not very dangerous. As a river guide, I have taken 6
year-olds down this section and they have fared just fine. I don't want anyone to think that they
can't do this section from being scared. After reading your water, you should just stay away from a
hole that looks bigger than your skill level and enjoy a perfect scenic float trip!
September 28 2009 (3399 days ago)
x (1)
I've ran this river 8-10 times, sometimes in a kayak and some in a duckie. I agree with one of the
previous boaters. The type of boat can make or break a day here. I actually started paddling on the
Mcreery to Thurmond section in a kayak. My take on the Upper New is that it can be a good beginner
run if you are in a kayak or IK. A roll is nice but as long as you can wet exit you will be fine.
An open canoe, especially with no floatation could lead to a bad day. As far as holes go, low water
levels are the worst for sticky ones. A good level (In my opinion is 7ft on the thurmond gauge)just
big waves at this level and the rapids all end in deep pools, so if you swim you have plenty of
time to collect your stuff. S. Sage
August 30 2007 (4159 days ago)
x (1)
I would remove "beginner" and "family" from this description. I have boated this many many times,
kayaking (easy) and in a tandem boat (not easy). At moderate levels the waves in silo are easily 4
feet, and will swamp an open canoe quickly. On a cool day without wetsuits, this could be bad news.
I do not feel that this is a river for beginners. Beginners in duckies with an outfitter/guide,
sure! First time family canoeists with a 6 year old in between the thwarts- no way. Beginner is
class I and II. This is a POWERFUL river that will make for a very very hard day, perhaps with
injury or worse, for beginners. Try the Greenbrier, New above the Bluestone Dam, or other local
rivers if it is a new sport to you.
May 29 2006 (4616 days ago)
Charles and Nancy BrabecDetails
The distance for this run is 11.1 miles - based on information from Bob Anderson (he was using his
GPS to check distances).
September 30 2003 (5589 days ago)
From Boatertalk:
Date: May 30 2003, 2:38 GMT
From: unclefuzzy

McCreery to Stonecliff
Cross to the river right side on Route 41 and turn left onto CR-25, then follow it all the way to

Or take Route 41 south (toward Beckley) and then go right on Route 61. When you get to Glen Jean
find CR-25 and take it down to Thurmond. When you get to Thurmond CR-25 will turn right and follow
the New upstream to StoneCliff.

Meadow Creek to McCreery

From I-64 take exit 138 and follow CR-7 to Meadow Creek. To get to McCreery from there you can go
back to I-64, take it to exit 124 (East Beckley). Then go right and the road you are on will join
with Business Route 19 (Eisenhower Drive). Take that road to US 41 and turn right on US 41 to go
down to McCreery.

Another way to get to McCreery from Meadow Creek it to stay on river right. Take CR7-1 from Meadow
Creek thru Claypool. When you get to Rt 20 turn left and and go a short distance to CR-31. Turn
left onto CR-31 and take it to Route 41 (going thru Danese on your way). When you get to Route 41
turn left and drive down to the New. Croos the New and you are at McCreery.

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