Since the gauge
downstream of Highway 76 already read 2.0 and heavy rains were
forecast, the air was in the fifties, and we had a few Section IV
first timers, we decided to switch our Chattooga trip from Section IV
and run Section III from Earl’s Ford to Highway 76. As it turned
out, the rain stopped just before we put in and did not resume ’til
our boats were loaded that evening.

Paddling
were Cathy Bender, Jeff Lankford, Jim Maier, and Celeste Quinn in
kayaks and Peter Chau, John McCorvey, Steve Smith, Dickie Tillman and
I in solo open canoes. We took a leisurely pace, played a good deal
and had our share of swims, mostly from surfing. Peter flipped twice
surfing the first ledge but quickly dumped and paddled back into this
hole and played in most of the other significant holes on the river
all day. Dick’s Creek Ledge, Second Ledge and the Bull each flipped
one open boater, but most had strong runs. We all enjoyed heroic
runs of Bull Sluice, most notably Jeff. He got a little sideways
entering the top hole, was stopped and surfed for about 30 seconds.
He finally inched his way downstream, pulled out to the left of
Decapitation Rock and was flushed out upright to a large ovation.

After
a long, hard day of fun we all took full advantage of the
all-you-can-eat country style feast at the Green Shutters Restaurant
in Tiger, where we were joined by Scott McCorvey, who had run Section
IV. The ten of us sat together and enjoyed the river lies and good
fellowship while our waiter had to keep refilling platters of quail,
country ham, fried chicken, butter peas, rice, green beans, corn,
sweet potato bread and other types of baked goodies, tomatoes and
peach cobbler. We all made the clean plate club!

by
Roger Nott
Saturday, June 7, 1997