Gage: Station ID: 03540500 - Emory River @ Oakadale Runnable @ 5000+ Runnable Oct-May See Tennessee Paddle for info on this and other streams in the Obed/Emory watershed.
For infomation please click on the link below:
On 4-27-2020 We completed this run all the way down to Oakdale in our new Phat Cat from RMR. Flow was around 4700+- and falling during a whole day on the river with picture perfect weather. First few miles down from Montgomery Bridge were flat w just very little top water current. After maybe 30-40 min we began to see the pace pick up. 2-3 spots our Cat was barely wide enough to fly down some narrow chutes, where as kayakers its ideal. Narrow but fun w lots of swirling waters at the bottom of some of the class 2-3s. After joining the Emory we stopped at Nemo to stretch legs and look at the rapid. Ran the rapid right of center where the meat is ..no problems..wavy and bumpy fun. A few miles later we saw a river otter in the middle of the river right before a small class 2 shoals area. We kinda scared each other. It dived down then resurfaced in front of our boat just to watch us float away. Definitely recommend Camp Austin bridge takeout as the rest of the short trip to oakdale is class 1 w a little top water current.
Emory River, Hwy 62 to Catoosa Road class 2-3 (listed on AW as Emory -2. Emory River Canyon - Hwy 62 to Nemo)
- Minmum flow is 4000 cfs on Emory River at Oakdale, TN gauge
- Max flow is 20000 cfs
- Run is 7 river miles
Ran this section on 03-28-09. The Emory @ Oakdale gauge was at 6000cfs. The water at the put in didn't look particularly high, it was a misty green in color. If you were to see the water at the put in muddy and swift I would check the gauges again. At 6000cfs I would rate this run as slightly more difficult than the Nantahala only with more flat water and less rapids.
It starts out flat as it moves away from the houses at the put in. The scenery is top notch but for a little trash here and there. The current is swift and the couple of miles of flat water pass quickly. Eventaully you start running easy class II rapids. They become more frequent as you get to the bottom of the Canyon. At it's peak, just above the (functional) railroad bridge, it's a blast, with some gradient, horizon lines, munchy little holes and some nice surfing waves. The rapids are straight forward, "if it looks good. It is good." but on some of the more technical drops down stream vision is limited.
The good things about this run are.
1) It's a short run with an easy shuttle.
2) The rapids are class II-III with no suprises other than strainers and tree falls, which is common on streams like this. We encountered no dangerous downed trees on our run but there were quite a few trees in the river, they just didn't come into play.
3) It's a good warm up run if you've been out of your boat for a while.
4) It's a good intro into creeking, for people with the skills.
The negatives of this run would be
1) If you put on too low it may get frustrating.
2) There is a lot of flat water before the rapids start.
3) There is no spectacular canyon scenery (it is uniquely beautiful)
4) The funnest rapids end just about the time they start getting good.
This gauge is new and in an experimental phase. The Emory at its mouth is 1/3 the drainage of the differential drainage of the Obed at Lancing and the Emory at Oakdale. This gives an estimation of the flow in this stretch of the Emory. 250 cfs should be a bony but doable minimum. 4000cfs will be very big. 1000-2000 should be fun.
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.
Emory River after Camp Austin bridge
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!