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Difficulty IV(V)
Length 2.52 Miles
Gauge SNAKE CREEK NEAR WHITESBURG, GA
Flow Range 500 - 5000 CFS
Flow Rate as of: 42 minutes ago 11.7 [CFS] ℹ️
Reach Info Last Updated 02/12/2018 1:53 pm

River Description


This run takes a lot of rain, look for everything else to be flooding.

The steep stretch drops between 110 to 150 feet in the first half mile, depending on which maps you are looking at. The total gradient for the first mile is either 165 or 195 feet, depending on whos mapping software you are using. Basically the run has a mile of solid whitewater, followed by a minimum of 1.5 miles of flatwater. I did not add the flatwater to the gradient equations above (drops it to about 80 fpm for the total run). For comparison, Tallulah Gorge is about a mile of whitewater followed by 1.5 miles of lake.

The distance of about 2.5 miles on this run is probably wrong. The distance was calculated using topo maps which show the stream flowing a straight line thru the flats down to the take-out. The reality is that the stream meanders all over the place in the valley before it gets to the hooch.

Trip report from 2003-07-01 23:23:58
It looked good at the top, so we set shuttle. When we got to the bottom the road was covered by about 6 inches of water. This is now my guide, if the take-out road is under water, the run is good to go!!! It dropped about a foot while we were on it.

The run starts out as a 10 foot wide ditch. We put in on the downstream side of Hwy 5 (where I almost stepped on a copperhead). The current was moving fast over small 2 foot ledges. The tree canopy was almost at water level. There was a lot of ducking under branches. Pretty soon the ledges started getting bigger. First 3 feet, then 5. Then a creek comes in on the left and the stream opened up. The drops started to get big, and they were stacked on top of each other. A couple of 6 foot and 8 foot slides and some pretty big horizon lines. The eddys were small and sketchy, but the drops were boat scoutable from the eddies. Then there was a big 12 foot or so slide. The holes at this point were pretty meaty. Below the big slide were a couple of small drops, then a MAJOR horizon line. This one we got out to scout, on the left.

This was a big class 5. A 20 foot tall waterfall with a sketchy landing zone followed immediately by two more good sized ledge drops. The line for the run is down the right, following the green (brown actually) tongue off of the roostertail. There was some debate on if you would land on rocks or not at the bottom.

There were only two of us and we put on late...we used some common sense for a change and portaged. There is a trail on river left around the falls. Follow it up the hill about 30 feet, the cut right. Don't take the first trail down, take the second. It ends in a nice beach below the falls and the run out drops. Below the falls there is still some good class 4 for maybe another half mile. Very continuous, steeper than I was expecting. Lots of scrambling going on, but everything was still boat scoutable.

Eventually it flattens out. From there the river meanders and twists and turns and turns some more. We had to get out of the boats 4 times to portage log jams. We also hopped and boofed a number of logs, and limboed under a bunch more. Total time on the run was right at two hours. We were scampering right along too get off before dark, but the last half hour we got caught in the dark.

This is my new favorite Metro Atlanta Gnar!!!

Brad Roberts 2003-07-01 23:50:02
Mostly bedrock slides. Most of the rapids are open, but some of the slides have some shallow landing zones. We had a good water level. Much less would have been scrapey. Much more would have been out of control. Jim M. and I both pitoned at least once. One sketchy tree in the second rapid past the falls, but you can get around it on the left. This was followed by an interesting 'wall shot' type rapid. All of the rapids above the falls were free of trees. I didn't notice any undercuts on the run. Overall we gave the run a class 4 rating with one class 5 in the falls. The paddle out kinda sucks, but the adreneline buzz was still going pretty good at that point. It was all good :-)
Bradley


A trip report from July 11, 2005:
Subject: Hurricane Creek Trip Report

So it rained 6 inches in south Atlanta, so I went boating.

The local rivers were sickeningly huge. Sweetwater and the Dog looked like Colorado streams at prime snowmelt. It seemed like a good time to look at Hurricane Creek.

David Spotts and I met up in Douglasville around 3:00 and drove over to the put in. Both Little Hurricane and Hurricane looked like they were pumping and the takeout road was covered by 4-6 feet of water so it seemed go to go. The only previous trip I was aware of saw the creek at 6 inches over the road.

We put in and started downstream. The creek is very narrow and has lots of small drops and started out as a nice creek run. I thought the run had promise and the rapids started to build in intensity. Overall the top sections was very similar to the North Fork of the French Broad or Chauga Gorge (Class III rapids requiring IV skills and there were consequences for flipping or being off line). We ran a fair number of medium sized slides and small drops (8-10 feet). The gradient started to pick up and we arrived at the top of Hurricane Falls. Now I have seen worse rapids and I am sure it can be run, but it did not seem prudent to plunge off a 15 foot gnarly waterfall into shallow water with only one other boater on the trip. We walked the falls. The rapid below the falls was very pushy and the next drop had some poorly placed wood. After a few more rapids the river gradually slowed down. Then the takeout paddle started to resemble a hellish strainer fest with trees leaning over or in the water for the next mile. We only had to carry over about 5 trees but the takeout paddle made the run worth doing only once or twice.

The creek is well named. It takes a hurricane to make it run.

Dr. Will K. Reeves

Rapid Descriptions

Comments

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wreeves
|
14 years ago

The paddle out gets close to really sucking as the trees and foliage are annoying.

default user thumbnail
wreeves
|
14 years ago

Metro Atlanta Gnar might be a bit of an overstatement. This run is fun at the to but far from gnar. The top part is similar to the North Fork of the French Broad but just is not as long. Then the creek becomes a miserable tree infested ditch and finally a pond.
When the takeout road is 4-5 feet underwater Hurricane Creek is ok for a one time run. The falls still look mighty impressive.

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BradR
|
16 years ago

Snake Creek at whitesburg might be a better indicator for this one over sweetwater. Similar sized drainage, and closer.

default user thumbnail
BradR
|
16 years ago

Mostly bedrock slides. Most of the rapids are open, but some of the slides have some shallow landing zones. Jim M and I both pitoned at least once. One sketchy tree in the second rapid past the falls, but you can get around it on the left. All of the rapids above the falls were free of trees. I didn't notice any undercuts on the run. Overall we gave the run a class 4 rating with one class 5 in the falls. The paddle out kinda sucks, but the adreneline buzz was still going pretty good at that point. It was all good :-)

default user thumbnail
BradR
|
16 years ago

It looked good at the top, so we set shuttle. When we got to the bottom the road was covered by about 6 inches of water. This is now my guide, if the take out road is under water, the run is good to go!!! It dropped about a foot while we were on it.

The run starts out as a 10 foot wide ditch. We put in on the downstream side of hwy 5. The current was moving fast over small 2 foot ledges. The tree canopy was almost at water level. There was a lot of ducking under branches. Pretty soon the ledges started getting bigger. First 3 feet, then 5. The a creek comes in on the left and the stream opened up. The drops started to get big, and they were stacked on top of each other. A couple of 6 foot and 8 foot slides and some pretty big horizon lines. The eddys were small and sketchy, but the drops were boat scoutable from the eddies. Then there was a big 12 foot or so slide. The holes at this point were pretty meaty. Below the big slide were a couple of small drops, then a MAJOR horizon line. This one we got out to scout.

This was a big class 5 20 foot tall waterfall with a sketchy landing zone. There were only two of us and we put on late...used some common sense for a change and portaged. There is a trail on river left around the falls. Follow it up the hill about 30 feet, the cut right. Don't take the first trail down, take the second. It ends in a nice beach below the falls and the run out drops. Below the falls there is still some good class 4 for maybe another half mile. Very continuous, steeper than I was expecting. Lots of scrambling going on, but everything was still boat scoutable.

Eventually it flattens out. From there the river meanders and twists and turns and turns some more. We had to get out of the boats 4 times to portage log jams. We also hopped and boofed a number of logs, and limboed under a bunch more. Total time on the run was right at two hours. We were scampering right along too get off before dark, but the last half hour we got caught in the dark.

This is my new favorite Metro Atlanta Gnar!!!

Gage Descriptions

If the road at the take-out has water flowing on the gravel from the stream, then its running. Look for Sweetwater to go over 9 feet, or Annewakkee to be too high to mess with. Look for a solid 2 inchs of rain in the area.

The Snake Creek gauge is 5 miles away, and Snake has a similar sized drainage. We are going to experiment with this one for a bit to see how it correlates.

Hurricane has a small drainage, don't expect it to hold its water more than a few hours. You're probably going to be running it while its pouring rain.

Directions Description


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Patrick Dortch

Revisions

Revision #Revision DateAuthorComment
1208901 02/12/18 wreeves
1190281 07/12/05 Patrick Dortch n/a