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Difficulty I-II
Length 6 Miles
Gauge N/A
Flow Range
Reach Info Last Updated 12/11/2006 6:55 am

River Description


There are about 5-6 sets of shoals on this run including Big Rapid, a cranking Class II and Florida's second-biggest rapid. All of these are easily navigated. Inexperienced boaters should scout Big Rapid.

The guidelines above are weak at best. The rapid is commonly known as Lost Dog Rapid, because of the tendancy of lost hunting dogs to show up. The guage station indicated as the take-out is long gone. (This take-out is called the Burnt-Bridge take-out, and is about 150 yards upstream from the remains of an old bridge. Little is left of the bridge other than the abutments. It's also possible to drive to Lost Dog Rapids.) The Nutall Rise USGS gauge has no relevance to this section of the river. Nutall Rise is almost on the coast, many miles downstream and its daily fluctuations clearly show only tides. A better basis is to use the Suwannee River Water Management District's on-line listing for Lamont http://www.srwmd.state.fl.us/ (Unfortunately, USGS does not capture this gauge.) The river starts getting scrapy under 48'. Official flood is 51.9', but the river can be paddled at higher levels, although the the rapids will be flooded. Lost Dog Rapids is best near flood level. It's an easy rapid with little maneuvering needed. It's easily scouted/portaged from the left bank where a well-maintained section of the Florida Trail runs along the river. At higher levels surfable waves will be present, but resist the temptation to surf without a helmet, as a couple of "got ya" rocks of sharp, fractured limestone are concealed in the right of the wave train. (In a normal run down Lost Dog Rapid, you'll be well to the left of the sharp rocks.) Less experienced paddlers will be more challenged by an S-turn about four miles into the trip than they will be by Lost Dog Rapids, which is easily portaged, while the S-turn is not. Every few years, the remains of a boat will be found wrapped around a cypress tree at the bottom of the S-turn. To avoid this hazard, paddlers should be sure to hug the inside of last turn. At flood levels, water flows over the middle and lower part of the S-turn through trees and brush, creating potential entrapment hazards. It is not clear if trot-line fishing remains legal on this section of river; it has been in past years. Regardless, lines tied to tree limbs should be left alone as you will find fishhooks at the end of them. Access to this section of the river is not as easy as it once was because many of the access roads have been closed by a hunting club that has leased the adjacent woodlands. The land right next to the river is pubic property and in theory the Burnt-Bridge take-out or Lost Dog Rapids can be accessed by driving southwest to the road leading to Goose Pature and then north on low-quality, unmaintained dirt roads. However, it's easier to lenghten the trip and take out near the road leading to Goose Pasture, where the river goes under ground, making the trip about 10 miles from the Walker Springs Bridge where Jefferson County Road 257 becomes Taylor County Road 14. (CR 14 becomes a dirt road about two miles south of the bridge.) A map that includes access points may be found at http://www.srwmd.state.fl.us/district+lands/recreation/conservation+lands/maps/aucilla+and+econfina+map.htm In 2005, the turn to Goose Pasture has a road sign reading "Powerline Road", and it's the first sign found as you drive southwest from Cabbage Grove. (While still maked on maps as a community, the only evidence of Cabbage Grove is a fire tower.) The access to the Aucilla Sink is narrow, unmaintained and hard to find. It's about 50 yards east of a metal grate spanning the road.

Rapid Descriptions

Comments

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Donald M. Kelly
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8 years ago

The “Powerline Road” sign is gone. In 2008, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Consevation Commission excluded vehicles from the very narrow dirt road leading to the Aucilla Sink, where the river goes underground. Both the "map" and "directions" tabs of this Webpage directs boaters to this road. The road remains open to foot traffic, but may become overgrown following the exclusion of vehicles. It's about 350 yards to the sink and another 100 to the sandbar take-out. A representative of FFWCC stated that the road was closed because "There are so many roads in that area and erosion and multiple access points are not favorable for the resource...." Other take-outs exist along the river, but are a bad bet for someone unfamiliar with the local unmarked, minimally maintained dirt roads. In 2009, a map on the Suwannee River Water Management District's Website gives a general indication of the location of access points: http://www.srwmd.state.fl.us/DocumentView.asp?DID=209 USGS now has the Lamont gauge on-line.

No Gage

Gage Descriptions

Above 7.0' some of the smaller rapids begin to get covered up.
Above 15.0' even Big Rapid gets covered.

Directions Description


We have no additional detail on this route. Use the map below to calculate how to arrive to the main town from your zipcode.

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Matt Muir

Revisions

Revision #Revision DateAuthorComment
1192968 12/11/06 n/a n/a