These guys make playing with rapids look easy.
Dancing in the rapids on Ocoee River
Located in the Cherokee National Forest, the Ocoee River flows through a beautiful gorge surrounded by scenic wildlife, yet it is within several hours of many major cities in Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama and North Carolina.
The water in the river is controlled for hydro-electric power, but has regular releases for both the whitewater course and the rafting area. When a competition is held on the river, about 1,400 cubic feet per second (628,320 gallons per minute, or 39.6 cubic meters per second). If you consider the amount of turbulence and whitewater that this discharge provides, you might get a sense of the awesome power of this river when in flood. Water levels and speed can change significantly after water is released. At low water, the river is shallower and slower. At high water, the river rises 2 to 3 feet and picks up speed considerably ensuring that the more than twenty continuous rapids are a barrel of fun and providing many play spots for miles.
The rapids on the Middle Ocoee River
map courtesy of Ocoee Outdoors
Some say that this is America’s most popular whitewater rafting river with more than 200,000 rafters braving the rapids each year. The Middle Ocoee explodes into five miles of almost continuous whitewater, with over 20 Class III and IV rapids. From the Class IV Grumpy Rapid at the start, to the grand finale Hell’s Hole, the Ocoee guarantees a memorable whitewater adventure for the beginner and experienced whitewater rafter.
A long-time playground for whitewater kayakers, the Ocoee River is more than just a river to paddle – it’s a core part of America’s kayaking culture. Not only is this an ideal river to learn to kayak on, but it is the ultimate convenient destination to improve your paddling and stretch your whitewater horizons.
Kayaking on the Ocoee
photos courtesy of Paddler112
Check out one of the most extreme kayak races in America, perhaps the most extreme? – North Carolina’s Green River…