Clear Fork - 2. Brewster Bridge to Burnt Mill Bridge

Clear Fork, Tennessee, US


2. Brewster Bridge to Burnt Mill Bridge

Usual Difficulty II+ (varies with level)
Length 10 Miles
Avg. Gradient 14 fpm
Max Gradient 40 fpm

Adam Garrett @ Swimmers

Adam Garrett @ Swimmers
Photo of Adam Garrett by Brandon Garrett taken 07/15/03 @ 100 cfs apx.

Gauge Information

Name Range Difficulty Updated Level
usgs-03409500 300 - 4000 cfs I-II 00h29m 105 cfs (too low)

River Description

This run starts off with under Brewster's Bridge. There's ample parking at the put in and good river access.

The first few miles are pretty calm. You will travel through a narrow sandstone gorge before the action picks up. At mile 4 the first rapid of significance will appear. Look for a large over hanging rock on river right. This is Decapition Rock. At lower flows the river forces you to go under the overhang, but at flows above 1500cfs the river is to high to pass under the overhang. This forces you to boof over the big rock in the middle of the river. Scouting is best on river right. If you have to boof this drop, be aware that the hole at the bottom will be very sticky. At levels over 1500cfs I would classify this as a III.

There are a few more small rapids before the confluence with Whiteoak Creek, which comes in on the right. (There is some beautiful scenery up Whiteoak Gorge, making it a fine run, if you don't mind the flatwater paddle-in). Not far down stream there will be a long flatwater section and a sandy beach area on the right with a rope swing. You are now less than 3 miles from the take out. After the beach there are some faster sections of water.  

The next rapid of significance is Swimmers Rapid about 0.7 miles downstream. This is a small ledge that has a large "flipping rock" in the middle. Best run from right to left to avoid the rock. At higher levels this becomes a riverwide hole. There is a large recovery pool at the bottom.  

About 1 mile past Swimmers, there are two campsites on river left. If you look closely you will see trails leading to the river from the campsites. After the campsites there are a few short rock gardens before the long flatwater paddle to the take out. Beware at lower levels as the flatwater section can be dangerous on river right. There have been numerous drownings on these sections. This is not a problem if you stay in your boat and don't get out to swim.

The take-out is on the left before the bridge.

StreamTeam Status: Not Verified
Last Updated: 2011-05-14 10:30:22

Rapid Summary

Mile Rapid Name Class Features (Legend)
0.0Brewster's BridgePutin
4.0Decapition RockII+Hazard
8.0Swimmers RapidII+Playspot Photo
10.0Burntmill BridgeTakeout Photo

Rapid Descriptions

Brewster's Bridge
Put-In point.

Decapition Rock (Class II+, Mile 4.0)

At lower flows, run right under the overhang. At high flows (over 1500cfs), boof off the center rock and paddle hard through the hole at the bottom. Also be aware of the overhang at higher levels. It is perfectly head high and would make for a hard hit if you're too far to the right.  

Swimmers Rapid (Class II+, Mile 8.0)

Adam Garrett @ Swimmers

Adam Garrett @ Swimmers
Photo of Adam Garrett by Brandon Garrett taken 07/15/03 @ 100 cfs apx.

Run right to left. Watch out for a paralling flipping rock on your right when you begin with left angle.

Burntmill Bridge

Burnt Mill Bridge

Burnt Mill Bridge
Photo by Adam Garrett

Take-Out Point

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