Middle Fork of the Illinois Bayou Nogo to AR 27 Bridge

Witts Springs, Arkansas

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The Middle Fork of the Illinois Bayou begins south of AR 16 near Witt Springs and flows south to join the East Fork of the Illinois Bayou near AR 27, forming the Illinois Bayou. The 25-mile section contains some of the most remote areas in the state. Access is almost nonexistent for the first 15 miles, except for one low-water bridge on FR 1300 An ongoing legal controversy involving an uncooperative landowner in the area of the Nogo access recalls the State vs. McElroy case regarding the Mulberry River. The hassles required to access the upper 10-mile section of the Middle Fork of the Illinois Bayou are worth it. Paddlers are rewarded with a stretch of class II–III whitewater that relatively few boaters have run. Water levels are critical, and the upper sections should not be attempted unless you are sure there is sufficient water for the trip. For its entire length, the Middle Fork of the Illinois Bayou is a very swift and narrow stream that runs through boulder gardens and moderate drops that create large standing waves.

Middle Fork of the Illinois Bayou: Nogo to AR 27 Bridge Professional Review and Guide

"The Middle Fork of the Illinois Bayou begins south of AR 16 near Witt Springs and flows south to join the East Fork of the Illinois Bayou near AR 27, forming the Illinois Bayou. The 25-mile section contains some of the most remote areas in the state. Access is almost nonexistent for the first 15 miles, except for one low-water bridge on FR 1300 An ongoing legal controversy involving an uncooperative landowner in the area of the Nogo access recalls the State vs. McElroy case regarding the Mulberry River.

The hassles required to access the upper 10-mile section of the Middle Fork of the Illinois Bayou are worth it. Paddlers are rewarded with a stretch of class II–III whitewater that relatively few boaters have run. Water levels are critical, and the upper sections should not be attempted unless you are sure there is sufficient water for the trip. For its entire length, the Middle Fork of the Illinois Bayou is a very swift and narrow stream that runs through boulder gardens and moderate drops that create large standing waves."

Activity Type: Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing
Nearby City: Witts Springs
Distance: 12
Duration: 2 sections range from 1.5 to 4 hours
Class: Class II-III
Local Maps: USGS Smyrna, Solo
Driving Directions: Directions to Middle Fork of the Illinois Bayou: Nogo to AR 27 Bridge

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May 2018