Mid November is the perfect time to see peak
fall leaf color in this area, and the water quality at this time of year
is very good, very clear for a piedmont stream, downstream of Atlanta.
(Though, in hot or wet weather this is not always the case).
We put in on river right at the Old ferry site just South of Georgia Power Plant Wansley off. We then paddled 12.3 miles to downtown Franklin. See driving directions at the bottom of this page.
We had a group of 5 boats: 2 crossover kayaks, one touring kayak, on sit on top fishing kayak, and one whitewater canoe.
Some typical scenery in this section:
This area is very remote with very little development, and it is
excellent for wildlife viewing, notice the Osprey nest behind the
I call this rapid “1st Rapid”. It’s a small class II, or big class
I+, it’s got some nice play spots in it on river right, but tends to
collect wood in the center. It’s about a 45 minute paddle from the put
in to this rapid.
This rock island is below the rapid and tends to collect unusual items:
As you come around a strong bend in the river, look for a creek on river left that has a nice waterfall on it:
The next rapid of note is rock island rapid (small class II/big class
I). There’s a big flat rock on river left, this is a good place to
stop for lunch. Also nice surfing spots across the whole river right
You will come to a large island where the river splits into three
channels. The river left is the most direct route, and Bush Head
Shoals, the first class II/II+ rapid is immediately after the islands:
Bush Head Shoals, this rapid has some great side surfing spots:
The last rapid is also a solid class II, Daniel Shoals. You will
come upon a small island on river right that is decimated with debris.
Move to mid river, it’s very shallow here, as you approach the rapid
move to river left, for a very fun chute with a great surfing wave:
It’s about an hour to downtown Franklin from there! This river
section has much better scenery and rapids than the metro hooch, though
it is a LONG paddle, and not a paddle for “whitewater only” folks.
This trip corresponds to “HH” to “II” on the map in the wonderful book “A Canoeing and Kayaking Guide to Georgia”.
- River Difficulty: Beginner (Class I to II)
- Distance: 12.3 miles ( Hollingsworth Ferry Rd. to Franklin City Park @ LaGrange St.)
- Avg Gradient: 2.1 fpm
- Minimum Suggested Level: It does not happen on this section.
- Suggested Level: Almost anytime. Required releases from Atlanta make this run when everything else is dry.
- Water Levels
- Put In / Take Out Location
- Nearby Outfitters
- Article Search
- Blog/Newsgroup Search
- Images/Video Search
- AW Information
USGS Chattahoochee Near Franklin Gauge:
Put In / Take Out Location:
Put In: 33o 23.697N, 85o 2.065’W
Go North on GA-1/US-27/Martha Berry Hwy. – Drive 7.9 Miles
Turn Right on Glenloch Rd. – Drive 1.8 Miles
Turn Right on West Ferry Rd. (AKA Hollingsworth Ferry Rd.) – Drive 3.4 Miles to dead end at boat ramp.
Take Out: 33o 16.668N, 85o 6.135W
Franklin City Park – Baseball complex and boat ramp
From Franklin: Go West on GA34/Route 100/ LaGrange Street
Cross the river to the West and immediately turn left on Glover Rd. into Heard County Recreation Department park.