Regional Guide

Smoky Mountains Paddling

It's your chance to paddle a real Olympic course: The Ocoee Whitewater Center was built for the '96 Olympics, and now you can dip your paddle here. The Center is open seven days a week from April through October, and on weekends only from November through March.

Coming from the confluence of the Toe and Cane Rivers, the Class III and IV waters of the Nolichucky cut through the Bald and Unaka Mountains. After the Nolichucky Gorge, the Nolichucky is a typical Smoky Mountain valley stream with Class II and III rapids.

Right on the edge of the national park, Fontana Lake makes for a flatwater paddler's paradise. You'll find great views of Shuckstack Mountain out to the arm of Eagle Creek.

Take it easy with a paddle on the Class I and II rapids of the Conasauga River in Cherokee National Forest. With great views throughout, the river originates in the Cohutta Wilderness Area and eventually becomes the Oostanaula River in Georgia.

Right in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, you can find a great paddle trip on Eagle/Hazel Creek, which offers a couple of places to camp. With gorgeous forests and logging-town ruins, you'll find tons of inspiring scenery here.

Published: 29 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 7 Nov 2011
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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