Reedy River - 0- Reedy River Falls Historic Park (Falls Park)

Reedy River, South Carolina, US


0- Reedy River Falls Historic Park (Falls Park) (Reedy River Falls)

Usual Difficulty IV(V) (for normal flows)
Length 0.5 Miles
Avg. Gradient 200 fpm
Max Gradient 200 fpm

Reedy River Falls (Big Brother)

Reedy River Falls (Big Brother)
Photo of Ben Gaston by Yolanda Cleveland (Nicole) taken 12/05/02 @ ~400

Gauge Information

Name Range Difficulty Updated Level
usgs-02164000 200 - 2000 cfs IV(V) 00h50m 108 cfs (too low)

River Description

The Reedy River drops over a spectacular waterfall in the Reedy River Falls Historic Park of downtown Greenville. Currently the bridge spanning the falls is being removed and the dangerous piling will no longer be a whitewater issue, though there is some debris in the water, including a 20' long steel I-beam breaching the runout of the falls and some rebar protruding from the old piling beds on river L in the splash pool. The good news is that the contract included a section that the construction must include the removal of all debris to bedrock. This waterfall and the following two downstream ledges have been run by boaters numerous times, but only in heavy flow conditions. This river flushes extremely quickly, and I am guessing needs about an inch or 2 of rain within 12 hours to even consider a run. Upstream of the Peace Center, there is a flatwater Slalom Course, but between this course and the falls there is a low-head box dam that looks like a death trap not worth the risks. Below the falls park and the US-29 bridge, there is a broach-trap box-bridge carrying a 14 inch water main. I have heard of these slots being run at moderate levels, but the boxes are set about thirty degrees to the current, and are often filled with debris. Scout and consider carefully before shooting this bridge. Below this is a nice slide, and at higher flows what looks to be a decent wave/hole that could pull some good surfs and 360s, though I don't know how deep it is and the feasability of verticle moves.
StreamTeam Status: Verified
Last Updated: 2006-01-19 23:57:01

Rapid Summary

Mile Rapid Name Class Features (Legend)
0.0Slalom CourseIPlayspot
0.2Lowhead Box Dam
0.3Reedy Falls (Big Brother)5.0Waterfall Photo
0.4Lower Falls (Little Brother)IVPhoto

Rapid Descriptions

Slalom Course (Class I)
A small ~20 gate flatwater slalom course upstream of the actual park, behind the Peace Center.

Lowhead Box Dam
A boofable lowhead dam.

Reedy Falls (Big Brother) (Class 5.0, Mile 0.3)

Reedy River Falls (Big Brother)

Reedy River Falls (Big Brother)
Photo by Matt Conley taken 10/15/02 @ 1,700 cfs?

A multistage slide/falls with a narrow landing margin. The accepted line is down the generally left side of the falls. You want to be lined up as you slide down the first section on the R edge of the exploding pillow under the drainpipe in the top of the picture, pointed R. Note that there is a boulder sieve to the R of the intended landing zone, and an undercut rock/bank on the L. The drop, depending on level, has a ramping effect at the bottom which breaks up any sort of sticky hole. If the water is really high, this lip may be covered to the point a boat may not interact with it, and the hole gets an attitude. NOTE--do not try the center or right side lines. The center seems to feed a disgusting looking boulder sieve, and the R side lands flat on bedrock from about 15 feet with a tight, nasty looking runout

Lower Falls (Little Brother) (Class IV, Mile 0.4)

Lower Falls (Little Brother)

Lower Falls (Little Brother)
Photo by Matt Conley taken 10/15/02 @ 1,700 cfs?

The difficulty here is severely dependent on water level. In the picture, it's hard to tell, but there are actually 2 distinguished drops here. Check out the low-water picture in the photo/video library to get the idea. 2 lines here--low water, start R, sliding down the first drop with L angle, slamdance with the rock face into a side surf, and jet through a little ramping slot into the landing pool. At higher water (a little lower than this photo), stay away from the R-side rock face, straight on L of center and punch the hole at the bottom. It has been said that debris as large as refrigerators have taken up residence in this hole at the bottom during floods. Scout even if you have just run the top falls...things float in randomly. Take note that there is a tree-infested island directly downstream that is in the center of the flow at higher water.

User Comments

Users can submit comments.
April 25 2011 (2829 days ago)
Kevin MillerDetails
Anyone who is qualified to paddle Reedy River Falls and has trouble with the Greenville City policy
allowing them to do so should show up with a copy of the document "Reedy Falls Ordinance Meeting
Minutes" attached at the right side of this. A copy of this document in hand has, in the past,
allowed paddlers to boat the falls.
February 21 2009 (3622 days ago)
x (1)
Hey, We ran the drop at 30 ish cfs and it was runable but low..still a fun park and huck. We did
however run into some problems with the police nothing serious but there are signs saying no
sliding on rocks...fortunately this does not include kayaking. And as long as your nice they will
not give you the 1000$ fine. We will find out on monday if the bill includes kayaking for sure or
January 6 2009 (3668 days ago)
x (1)
we ran it at 440 and it was good to go
November 19 2008 (3716 days ago)
x (1)
has this ever been boated @ low?


  • Reedy Falls Ordinance Meeting Minutes

    Meeting Minutes including Kevin and Michelle Millers' testimony, and resulting passage of a law that intentionally does not prohibit paddling Reedy River Falls.