The official gauge used to determine if its running or not has been switched from the CUmberland WIlls gauge to the Hyndman Guage at the end of the run. Minimium was set at 2.45, However, I don't have good data for determining the top end of the runnable, any help on that number would be appreciated.
As the person who wrote the original description above, the Class V is Railroad Rapid. It is above the listed put-in but part of the frequently combined Brush into Wills run.
3/6/07 - Yesterday a couple of us ran the bridge to bridge section of Wills (Fairhope down to first bridge). When we got to Yo-Yo we discovered that there had been a significant change to the drop
A 10X 10 slab of concrete has fallen off the retaining wall on river left and settled in the river left slot. It sits at a 45 degree angle and now forces all of the water under the undercut retaining wall. There is no way to run the left slot and avoid the under cut or the half dozen reinforcing rods hanging into the water.
The right slot and center slot were still available and have not changed. But given the nature of the left slot it is not a good idea to go left of the large rock above the drop even as a set up for the center slot as this move would require a boat length attainment above the left slot to make it back center.
There is a gauge at Hyndman which gives more accurate CFS readings since its right at the end of the run. It can be accessed at the PA gauge webpage, http://waterdata.usgs.gov/pa/nwis/current/?type=flow
In reference to a previous comment below, the Class 5 on this section is not the huge slide (Railroad Cut Falls?) above the normal put-in. The Class 5 refers to Yo-Yo Falls, especially if it has railroad debris in it!!! This has been true since at least the late 1980s (for proof, see Appalachian Whitewater, Volume 2, page 28---a description that, I think, was not written by Nathan Blatchley). The upper drop is not included in this section, even though it may well be Class 5 at some level(s). In my experience, this whole section is Class 5 when the water is high enough (when the big slide looked too insane for anyone to run). Or, if there is hidden debris, when it's low enough, too!
from the monacacy board reported by Steve Ettinger...
The drainage area of the Hyndman gauge is 60% that of the Cumberland gauge, which would suggest that the AWA minimum of 3.7=580 cfs at Cumberland would translate, on average, to 2.43=350 cfs at Hyndman. We ran Wills in 2004 at 2.55=410 cfs at Hyndman (with Cumberland at 3.82), and were a little above minimum, so I think 2.43=350 cfs would be about zero level.
The (V) on this run is Railroad Cut Falls. The falls are about 400 m above the normal put-in (at the bridge) up the railroad tracks from where they cross the road. The river bends through an S-turn and then plunges over four distinct ledges for a total drop of 30
Ran Wills on 3/4/2018. Level was 2.97'. This was my first run since the very significant change at YOYO. At this level is was straight forward, just point the boat down stream and hit the center chute. As mention by RNorman there is a submerged boulder in the chute. This boulder would most likely be a problem with any less water and if you flip roll up quickly or tuck tightly. The rapid may need a new name as YOYO just doesn't seem fitting now.
Made it back to Wills 4/2/2018 Level was 2.98'. New log at the top right hand side of Railroad Cut Falls. Also a tree extending from the right side to the left side of the creek just above the first bridge. We were able to scrape over it on the far left.
Ran this yesterday from post office bridge down to the gooseberry swimming hole at 2.63 ft.... What a fun creek run!!!...probably just class III at this level but very fun picking lines going thru chutes!!!...had successful fun run and can't wait to do it Again!!!
Lost a Blue Werner Sidekick paddle just above YoYo on 03 03 12. Name and contact info are on it; pogies were attached; would love to be reunited with it if anyone spots it.
We ran it at 750 cfs and except for the lost paddle, had an awesome run. No change in the rebar situation, so heads up through YoYo. This is a great creek!
04 22 12: Lost paddle is found and returned! Thanks to Vern, who found it while fishing, and to his paddling son Josh, who got it back to Ohiopyle for me!
We ran railroad falls at 500 cfs on the hard left side. The second to last ledge hole is the crux of the rapid. Power through, keep the nose straight or you'll be back surfed right into a very retentive hole. Its harder to clear with speed than it looks. Have a throw bag there as its an easy rescue but horrible recycling. The last hole seems to be nothing when I've been there to actually boat the railroad at sane levels. It would be interesting for people to post their highest CFS that they cleaned this Railroad cut falls.
Yo Yo is pretty easy to skirt right if you have any riversense of where not to be and when to scout.
The center line at Yo-Yo has changed for the better after all these spring floods. All the little rocks that used to be just upstream making it hard to get to the left side of the shelf are gone, and its now a straight-forward move to boof off the left side. Its possible the rebar is still in the hole there, we didn't see anything at 7-800cfs, but it may be just underwater.
The right line still looks the same, though the rocks just downstream of the move definitely have some undercut/sieve-like formations
1 year ago
by Ray Norman
2 years ago
7 years ago
by Stephen Forian
9 years ago
10 years ago
by Ben Durrant
A minimum of 0 on the visual painted gauge in Cumberland is required with anything over 3 ft being expert only (Class V according to Middle Appalachian River Guide)
A more accruate reading for what is happening on this run would be the Hyndman Gauge. As pointed out in the Comments, minimium for that guage would be roughly 2.5 for a very creeky ELF run. AN upper limit for this gauge has not yet been determined. Hwever it is now being used for this reach description
Using the Cumberland online guage, anythign over 6.5 would be expert only type territory.
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.
Railroad Cut Falls
Top of Railroad Cut Falls
typical rapid on Wills
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.
This past fall American Whitewater met with Ohiopyle State Park managers to discuss possible updates to their whitewater paddling regulations. The first topic was to change the rules governing raft sizes at different water levels to recognize the capabilities of self-bailing rafts. Shorter self-bailing boats will now be allowed to run the river at high water. Some small changes to the regulations will make Ohiopyle Falls more accessible to paddlers. A change in the way the gauge is interpreted should make the falls "legal" on more days. Although whitewater paddlers are only one part of the vast public that visits the park, every effort was made to accommodate them while avoiding user conflicts and safety hazards. Special thanks goes to Ken Bisbee, Ohiopyle State Park Operations Manager and John Hallas, a former Ohiopyle State Park Operations Manager who is now Director of State Parks. Click here to read the updated Ohiopyle River Regulations:
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!