Another secret of the Cumberland Plateau, Mammys is a full day adventure. There is a large pullout that makes a fine launch spot, and the creek is class II for a couple of miles, then II+. Then she turns class III with some sections becoming fairly continuous at good flows. The river a variety of tributaries contribute flow and broaden the riverbed, changing the character of the run.
There are lots of trees and brush in and around the creek, and constant vigilance for strainers is a must. Expect to duck under / hop over logs and make some tight maneuvers around wood obstacles. There are two drops that might be considered class III+ or IV- where the river slides and drops over ledges. The first slide type rapid has a rock in the hole where you might normally run it. This ledge is an easy scout and/or portage on the flat shelf on the right--unless the water is on the shelf, which would be high water. The second steeper ledge is on a left bend and has a tongue on the left if you can find it.
There are about 5 miles of Mammys before you the confluence with the Tiny Piney (Piney Creek) which doesn't seem so tiny when it joins from the left and quadruples the flow. The whitewater changes character with the larger streambed and volume but is no more than class III from this point to the takeout. Fall Creek comes in soon on the right with a similar volume to what you had in Mammys. A couple more miles downstream is the confluence with White's joining from the right, and then you are on a big river with the sandstone cliff vistas typical of the plateau.
Surf city is a set of ledges downstream of the Piney/White's confluence that form a variety of surfable waves and holes, some with eddy service. From this point downstream there are a few more II-III's then the whitewater tapers down until you reach the White's takeout on the left under the highway bridges.
Regarding flows, a deeply saturating rain will be necessary to bring this creek into a runnable range. There is a foot gauge at the takeout on White's Creek which read 4.0 before launching and 3.0 after taking out on a recent run with good flows. The gauge is painted on the upstream side of the bridge piling and this reading is taken on the side of the piling, rather than at the top of the water pile. It would probably be runnable at 3.0 before launching on falling water. There is a USGS gauge on White's but I have no information about correlations.
It may be wise to leave your valuables at home or carry them with you as breakins do occur.
Ran Mammy's today for the first time with good water after the flood of Feb 2019. It was considerably more fun than expected. The first few miles resemble a drainage ditch with class I and II water but then it cranks up to class III with long sections that move pretty good, and a couple of steeper slide/ledge type drops. We never had to portage but there were some tricky spots getting around all the wood. The flow approximately quadrupled with the addition of the "Tiny Piny" which wasn't so tiny today, and then Fall Creek added another portion and the confluence with White's at least doubled the flow making for a big water exit. At this flow (4 or 4.5 feet on the White's gauge at the takeout) I might not bring a club type group here as it would stink to have swimmers in the long continuous class III sections. At lower water I'm sure it mellows out but gets more boat abusive.
2002 trip report relocated from the body of the description:
Joe Greiner contributes:
Below is a brief trip report from a person named Shawn
From: "DL Luinstra"
Wednesday, May 08, 2002 11:10 PM
Last Saturday we got to run Mammy's Creek. It flows into Piney Creek, then Lower White's just above Surf City. (The takeout is the same as Lower White's, on Rte. 27.) This would be a great club trip if we could work out a better shuttle plan. Unfortunately Jeff's truck got broken into at the putin. The area was beautiful, with all types of flowering trees and shrubs along the narrow creek.
It seemed like a small step up from White's, which would seem to make it a perfect follow-up trip to the White's club trip next fall. We didn't have to get out and scout anything. However, there were a few trees to negotiate around or through--just ask Dave Dehart.
Anyway, I just wanted to let you in on a little jewel of a Class-III creek that seems to have been overlooked by many of the area boaters. Not too steep, not too scary. Try it, I think you will like it.
my memory is that is more like a class II-III creek with a couple of loooong
slides that are more like III+ to IV-. Calling it class III (a third of a
class harder than Nanthala Falls) overstates the creek as a whole and
understates a couple of rapids.
Below is a brief trip report from a person named Shawn. My comment above applies to this trip reportFrom: "DL Luinstra" <email@example.com>
Wednesday, May 08, 2002 11:10 PM
Last Saturday we got to run Mammies Creek (forgive me if I miss spell it). It
flows into Whites just above Surf City. This would be a great club trip if
we can work out a better shuttle plan. Unfortunately Jeff's truck got broken
into at the put in. The area was beautiful, with all types of flowering
trees and shrubs along the narrow creek. It seemed like a small step up from
Whites, which would seem to make it a perfect follow up trip to the Whites
club trip next fall. We didn't have to get out and scout anything. However
there were a few trees to negotiate around or through, just ask Dave
Anyway, I just wanted to let you in on a little jewel of a class III creek
that seems to have been overlooked by many of the area boaters. Not too
steep, not too scary. Try it, I think you will like it.
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Mammy's Creek scene
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