September 4, 2017

Watuaga River

  • ≈5 miles
  • ≈ 2 hours
  • no geocaches
  • no cell phone
  • no camera

I am way behind in posting this trip, mostly because there isn’t much to say and no pics. I am just adding it to the site to keep track of my miles with Huck.

Pork n Beans (Jane) and I met up on the morning of Labor Day for a float on the Watuaga River. I realized as I reached our meeting spot at the take out that I had forgotten to bring my cell phone. This meant I didn’t have anything to track the distance and duration of the trip.  It also meant that I didn’t have anything to take photos with.

I did have my GoPro in the bottom of my dry bag, so I was able to shoot some video along the way. You can see a compilation of that video here.

We started our trip at the Blevins Road fishing area. Without generation being done at Wilbur Dam, the water was low and slow. But, as is often the case on this river, it was very clear. We saw some big fish along the way. Part of this section of the river has been designated a “Quality Trout Zone” by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency. In this 2.6 mile section, anglers are only allowed to possess 2 trout, and they must be at least 14 inches in length. We always see a lot of anglers during our trips along the Watauga.

A highlight of any trip along this river is Quarry Falls. It was not running our last two trips, so we were happy to see it flowing on this day. Since the weather was quite warm, I paddled under the falls twice. It is such a rush to have the water pounding down all around you.

I also enjoyed a nice chat with a curious little calf. He let me paddle right up to him, and then stood watching me intently as I talked to him.

We ended our trip at the take out point on Riverview Dr near the wastewater treatment plant. It was quite a different experience to make the trip without a phone or camera along. Maybe I should make “unplugged” trips like this more often.

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