Paddling Eastern North Carolina
by Paul Ferguson (Pocosin Press)
© Paul Ferguson/Pocosin Press. All Rights Reserved.
Top few miles of the river, starting at Turnpike Road, was not too bad, but the further south we (twelve 11-16 year old scouts and two adults) got, the more trees we had to negotiate. Campsite at Jasper's Memory was trashed! Broken beer bottles everywhere was not exactly the best location for a scout troop to spend a night. Last few miles into HWY 71 in Maxton, it seemed we spent more time negotiating downed trees than paddling!
Section 1 Update: The estimated minimum on the USGS Drowing Creek near Hoffman gauge is noted as 200 cfs (3.8 ft). On an October 2005 trip at 70 cfs (2.1 ft), only two downed trees had to be portaged. There were many trees requiring ducking under. The last few miles from Chalk Banks to US 401 were clear of paddling obstructions. Update: Lumber River State Park has opened the Chalk Banks Access. The access road connects to US 401, 0.3 miles west of the bridge toward Wagram. There is parking and river access at the end of the two-mile road. There is a drive-in campground, but it is not near the river. From the Section 1 put-in at Turnpike Road, the Chalk Banks boat access is at mile 5.6. The canoe-in camping area is at mile 5.9.
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