This photo needs editing.
Difficulty I-II
Length 8 Miles
Flow Range 3.00 - 7.17 FT
Flow Rate as of: 50 minutes ago 4.59 [FT]
Reach Info Last Updated 07/13/2018 1:32 pm

River Description

Click here for a very useful map for this section, and most sections of the New River in VA.

Andrea Jones related:
The first rapid mentioned below sounds like the long class II rapid that has John Boat Hole at the top right of it. JB Hole has been known to cause some long swims by inexperienced boaters. The second rapid mentioned is also known (years ago) to have some large fresh-water sponges below the ledge in the middle of the river. You'd have to have low, clear water and a snorkel to see them, if they are still there. The beach is only there at lower water levels. There is another rapid after a long, slow wide section of the river that is called Clendennin Shoals. It is about a 100 yds long and is marked by a very large rock on the shore at river left from which comes out a small ledge. Below the ledge, the current funnels to the bottom left of the rapid in a narrowing shoals with a good-sized hole at the bottom. Best place to run it is start center and end bottom left, punching the hole square. Right side is very shallow. This hole does wash out at higher levels. About 3/4 of a mile after Clendennin Shoals, there is a large island that has most of the current running to the right. There is usually enough water to run the left side, but be careful of log debris at the old mill (or something) site, just before you get back to the main current of the river. NOTE: This will bring you out just above the take out. It isn't hard to attain back upstream to reach the two large ledges mentioned below.
One more suggestion. At the takeout, park your shuttle vehicle in the Wades parking lot at the top of the hill. It is not recommended to park under the bridge near the river.

Will Stauffer-Norris shared:
The put-in for this stretch is immediately after the Highway 460 bridge over the river on the right. You need to follow the road all the way down past the railroad tracks, passing back under the bridge.
The actual run is mostly easy class I-II whitewater. The rapids are almost all formed by ledges, so there will be a short rapid followed by a long stretch of flatwater. There are no named rapids along the stretch as far as I know. The largest is probably class II+, identified by a turn to the left and a large boulder in the center-right that forms a hole at high water. Another notable spot is a short, turbulent wave train (run river right) with a good-sized gravel beach on the right below it (good for eating lunch!).
Playboaters should not overlook the wave at the bottom of the last rapid; a ledge forms a nice-sized hole at levels between 2.5 and 3.5 ft. Park-and-play is very easy-- just park at the take out under the bridge and paddle up the huge eddy behind the island.
The take out for the run is right underneath another Highway 460 bridge, at Bluff City.

Rapid Descriptions


default user thumbnail
Patrick Sims
2 years ago

Ran this section on 7/4/2018 with the water level approx 3.5 Rapids were fun but the shelves were a little scrapey. I don't think I'd do it again if the water was much lower.

default user thumbnail
7 years ago

Ran this on 5/26/13 at approximately +5'. At this level, most of the normal rapids are washed out, but others came in and made it an entertaining run. The first busted dam was completely washed out and just presented a nice long wave train. There were a few nice standing waves about halfway down that made for some fun times. Overall, very runnable at this level for beginners, but also fun for the more adventurous.

Gage Descriptions

Tell us about this gauge by leaving a comment.

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.

No Accident Reports



article main photo

Attention Virginia Boaters!

Jason Robertson

During the high waters of Spring 2003, there has been a noticeable increase in reported confrontations between boaters and property owners in Virginia. Please remember to be respectful and courteous to property owners; do not trespass; and avoid confrontation in order to preserve access in the future.

Adam Goshorn


Matt Muir


Philip Young


Tony Allred Jr


Revision #Revision DateAuthorComment
1194411 03/31/06 Adam Goshorn n/a
1198542 11/02/10 Matt Muir Added coords, text from comments, and link.
1206747 07/31/16 Philip Young updated putin/takeout on map
1206750 08/01/16 Philip Young updated map link
1206749 08/01/16 Philip Young added photo to main page
1206751 07/13/18 Tony Allred Jr 7-10-2018 - cleanup
1210051 07/13/18 Tony Allred Jr 7-10-2018 - cleanup
1210069 07/13/18 Tony Allred Jr 7-10-2018 - cleanup
1210084 07/13/18 Tony Allred Jr 7-10-2018 - cleanup