From I-20 take Hwy 81 South from Covington and the run starts in downtown Porterdale.
When you see the mill, you are at the put in.
There is an abandoned gas station on the North side of the bridge that has been used for parking.
The best put in is to put into the river on the northwest corner of the bridge on public property. Thenfloat a few yards down to take out just before you reach the 12 foot high dam. Portage on river rightand put back in just below the dam.
To get to the take out, go North on Hwy 81 close to the edge of town and turn right on River Front Road.
Follow the road till you get to the river on the right. There is a parking area with a trash can.
The run is about 1/4 mile of III+ ledges then about a mile or two of II-III.
AT HIGHER WATER THIS RUN INCREASES DRASTICALLY IN DIFFICULTY
Rocky Plains Road or Pickett Bridge are probably better and shorter takeouts.
The major rapid on this section in Porterdale is at Cedar Shoals.
Unfortunatly it is now posted so the area might be closed to boaters. For more info see the comments below. Local boater Will Gosney has talked to area authorities and has been given a green light to paddle the river.
Will Gosney: 2004-11-14: We ran at about 340 cfs and is was still too low. I would think about 500+ would be more realistic. No problems from the police or residents about portaging the dam on river right.
At very high water levels, it appears that several undercut rocks would come in to play and you might want to avoid the big (house sized) rock on river right at the end of the run as it is undercut and the current might flow that direction.
josh lowry ran cedar shoals at 1780 cfs it was one hell of a ride scouting this river is a must the last rapid aka. #5 is a 4ft wall of water that is hard to punch threw big water boats only no playboating in this hole.
Ryan i believe we are the only people who pay attention to this river but o well. Yea the river is sick for sure today. dont need to be in it and these people need to fix the water gage b/c its def not 699CFS right now, more like 6000 CFS
Justin Hodges, man you know who pulled you out of that river and it wasn't the fire dept.! Haha, but seriously Justin and I paddled this river at 1600cfs and it was a lot of fun. Nice rapids at the bottom and one heck of a ride when I hit it at 2100cfs. A whole lot of junk in the river though so I wouldn't recommend staying upside down or swimming! None the less, this river throws you something new every time whether 20ft trees floating next to you or something else. Ryan Roth
I notice the water in all of the pictures here is quite brown. Are these pics at flood stage? Does anyone know the level that they were taken at; as they all seem from about the same time?
yes the pic were taking @ flood time around like 3000 CFS i think. When i kayaked this in 1600 CFS the water was completely red/brown.
Is there really a class V+ rapid.
Shuttle directions.<br />
To get to the run, from I-20 take Hwy 81 south from
Covington and the run starts in downtown Porterdale.
When you see the mill, you are at the put in. There is
an abandoned gas station on the north side of the
bridge that has been used for parking. To get to the
take out, go north on Hwy 81 close to the edge of
town and turn right on River Front Road. Follow the
road till you get to the river on the right. There is a
parking area with a trash can.<br />
The best put in is to put into the river on the
northwest corner of the bridge on public property.
Then float a few yards down to take out just before
you reach the 12 foot high dam. Portage on river
right and put back in just below the dam.<br />
The run is about 1/4 mile of III+ ledges then about a
mile or two of II-III. AT HIGHER WATER THIS RUN
INCREASES DRASTICALLY IN DIFFICULTY. <br />
Ok, finally got to run this section. We
ran at about 340 cfs and is was still too
low. I would think about 500+ would
be more realistic. No problems from
the police or residents about portaging
the dam on river right.
At very high water levels, it appears that
several undercut rocks would come in
to play and you might want to avoid the
big (house sized) rock on river right at
the end of the run as it is undercut and
the current might flow that direction.
Viewed river at 240 cfs. Did look like it was close to a minimum level.
At this level, the big rock in the middle of the river below the dam looked like at higher levels it would be slightly undercut on the left side.
I went by the Porterdale run recently and asked the police about their policy for access to the run.
I was told that the purpose of the keep out signs on river right was to keep people from loitering on that area. I asked and was told it was ok to put in above the bridge on river right, take out to portage the dam and put back in below the dam. They said "just don't take an hour and keep your contact as minimal as possible".
I would strongly suggest anyone considering this actually stop either at the Porterdale police station in the center of town to ask or track down the officer on duty and let them know what you intend to do.
If you think you want to run, call me at 770-560-3600, cause I'm about 10 minutes away from the run.
11 years ago
A note from USGS
Effective the week of March 21, 2005 the following stations will be deactivated due to cuts in funding from our cooperator for the stations, Rockdale County.
02204118 Honey Creek at Hurst Road, near Conyers,
02204130 Honey Creek at GA 212, near Conyers, GA
02207220 Yellow River at Pleasant Hill Road, near Lithonia, GA
02207335 Yellow River at Gees Mill Road, near Milstead, GA
For more information on what is needed to keep these gages operating, please call Brian McCallum at 770-903-9127 or email at email@example.com.
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.
View from the Road (putin)
First Rapid Below the Dam 11
First Rapid Below the Dam 10
First Rapid Below the Dam 9
First Rapid Below the Dam
Picture of Dam
View from below the Last Rapid (Takeout)
First Rapid Below the Dam 8
First Rapid Below the Dam 7
First Rapid Below the Dam 6
First Rapid Below the Dam 5
First Rapid Below the Dam 4
First Rapid Below the Dam 3
First Rapid Below the Dam 2
The Dam at Porterdale
Below the dam
Cedar shoals at almost 5k cfs
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Claude Terry, paddler, outfitter, and conservationist, died on November 20th, 2019. He was 83. A microbiologist by training, Terry began paddling in the mid-1960's while a professor at Emory University. He took to whitewater readily, and it became an important focus of his life. In 1969 he met veteran paddler Doug Woodward, and in 1971 the two became the technical advisers for the movie “Deliverance.” Afterwards, Terry and Woodward purchased the rafts Warner Brothers used in filming and bought 19 acres near the river. This became Southeastern Expeditions, one of the Southeast’s first whitewater outposts on the Chattooga. In 1974, Terry took then-Gov. Jimmy Carter on three trips on the Chatooga River, totaling 57 miles. This inspired Carter to get the Chattooga included in the Wild & Scenic Rivers Act and influenced later decisions protecting rivers across the U.S.“Terry adopted me as one of his students,” Carter told Outside Online in a 2017 interview. “it opened my eyes to the relationship between a human being and a wild river that I never had contemplated before that. When I got to be president I vetoed 16 different dam projects all over the United States.” Terry eventually quit his Emory University job and started full time career in environmental advocacy, including founding American Rivers, a principal U.S. conservation group. For the next 30 years he specialized in environmental projects involving rivers and wetlands and later, when he became a board-certified toxicologist, he developed an expertise in hazardous waste cleanups. He was an active paddler until sidelined by Parkinson's Disease. A passionate teacher and advocate, he is sorely missed by all who knew him. Click through for an excellent obituary and a photo of Terry taking Governor Carter over Bull Sluice!
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