Put In: Boaters will have to search to find a good put in for this section. The traditional put in for this reach was a campground on State route 615 at the intersection of route 621. This campground has been closed for several years. One possibility is at Silent Dell (Rt 817 ford), but this makes for a 16 mile run.
The takeout is under the Route 220 bridge at Eagle Rock just before the confluence with the James River. This is a state public landing.
This is a easy section of river, not much in the line of big rapids, but you must always keep an eye open for trees and strainers in these smaller streams.This is a good fishing stream with lots of smallmouth and redeyes. The reaches upsteam have a good pike population as well.On a recent outing we saw 2 beavers at different places, three or four great blue heron, several species of ducks, and a very suprised hawk that landed just over our heads. There is a nice rock formation on river right about a mile downstream. The wildflowers are abount and change with the season. There are alot of houses and cabins on this section, but there are not usually many people visable and there are lots of streaches of solitude.
If more exciting rapids are for you, and you like creeks, check out the Roaring Run reach on AW. Personally I would just as soon watch with my throwbag in hand, or just take the easy hike up to the falls. The hiking area is just up route 621 and worth the effort if you like creeks, slides and waterfalls. This area also has a catch and release trout fishing with barbless hooks only, for the flyfishermen out there.
Did this stretch on 1/1/19. Put in at Silent Dell. Easy float for beginners, with only minor bumpy stuff. Silent Dell to James river is approx 16.5 miles.
The previously-mentioned campground at the put-in is apparently closed, seemingly permanently but possibly only for the season (today is 11.1.15). Lots of NO TRESPASSING and KEEP OUT signs meant we drove around the Roaring Run area looking for anywhere to park until we came across a friendly old lady who allowed us to park in her driveway.
Gauge was at 550 - moving quickly for sure, but could easily envision some shoals getting scrapy at lower water. Lots of little riffles and wave trains, but nothing you could properly call a rapid... that said, not a whole lot of completely flat water aside from a few very inviting deep swimming holes and jump rocks - will have to come back in summer. Some really cool geologic features river right, especially early in the float. Couple wood drifts and roots to be aware of on either bank, but nothing remotely dangerous if you're paying attention.
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