The Caney Fork River in Tennessee

This trip is on the Caney Fork River in Tennessee.  The trip is 7.5-8 miles long.  Pack plenty of food and water.  We are meeting at Fairview Plaza at 7:30 in the morning because it is a two hour drive to get to Center Hill Dam located in the Buffalo Valley Recreation Area.  The recreation area has a boat ramp, plenty of parking and restrooms. 

The Center Hill Dam 

The put-in is just below the Center Hill Lake Dam.  The dam is controlled by TVA and it releases water multiple times a day on an irregular schedule.  When water is released it can cause sudden swift water and higher water levels.  There is no way to predict when water will be released.  Here is a link to information on the dams water release:  http://www.tva.gov/lakes/cnh_r.htm  The dam was constructed back in 1948.  In January 2007, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers classified Center Hill Dam as "high risk for failure", along with Wolf Creek Dam in Russell County, Kentucky.

The take-out is at Betty's Island on Betty's Bend Road.  The take-out doesn't have a boat ramp but there is easy water access and a gravel parking area.  The entrance to the parking area is marked by a SMALL BROWN SIGN.    

 MAPS

Click HERE for a map with directions from Bowling Green, KY (A) to Buffalo Valley Recreation Area (B).

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Click HERE for a map with directions from the put-in at the dam (A) to the take-out at Betty's Island (B).

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  • A former member
    A former member

    enjoyable

    September 12, 2012

  • Maryellen S.

    Raindrops keep falling on my head, but what a wonderful day! My first trip down the Caney Fork did not disappoint~water was clear and cold! I could have kept on going, it was way too short…oh wait, some did!!! Kudos to our fearless leaders who took charge of the situation and no one was left behind. What an adventure! Jenny was on my mind throughout the paddle~she loved the Caney and would’ve loved this particular day~seeing the mist hovering just above the water and pockets of fog wafting through the treetops~the beautiful bluffs and cave…landscape dotted with butterfly bushes and one whole section bursting with colorful wildflowers. The rain falling softly on us as we began our journey down the Caney echoed my sentiments like tears for the loss of my dear paddling friend/kindred spirit; then the sun broke through the clouds and shone down on us like her radiant smile as if to say, don’t cry for me, I’m with my dear Lord and Savior…I’ll see you again someday…enjoy...paddle on.

    September 10, 2012

  • Duane L B.

    lots of fun just a little wet to start

    September 9, 2012

  • Powell A.

    Good stretch of water! Had fun! Would like to do 16 miles starting as soon as a generatro comes on line.

    September 9, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    We really enjoyed meeting everyone for the first time. Hope we didn't cause any anxiety as some of the lost boaters - Abbie got cold and wanted to get out early. We really appreciate the group letting us tag along!

    September 8, 2012

  • Mike

    Thanks everyone for coming out on what began as a dreary day and ended up wonderful.

    September 8, 2012

  • matt w.

    Wow, other than anxiety over the lost boaters, it was a great day. A hot shower never felt sooooooo good !

    September 8, 2012

  • Maria C. S.

    Jason and I had a great time, as we always do with this group. Looking forward to the next trip already!

    September 8, 2012

  • Laurie Bruno CPR C.

    Beautiful River with plentiful wildlife and wildflowers

    September 8, 2012

  • Laurie Bruno CPR C.

    Heading out now from Nashville area. We can't wait! What's a little rain, anyways.

    September 8, 2012

  • Maria C. S.

    Jason, Duane, Powell, Maryellen, Ed and I are heading down from BG. Meeting in Scottsville at 8:00. Weather indicates weather should be blowing out at 10:00 or 10:30.

    September 8, 2012

  • Tangie S.

    No rain here at 7:00. Stormed A little about 2. See y'all shortly.

    September 8, 2012

  • Rhonda S.

    We just checked the weather. Thunderstorms. We hate to miss this trip. Hopefully get to kayak soon with you.

    September 8, 2012

  • J P Morgan S.

    It's all supposed to blow over by 6 or 7 AM, so should be no trouble, Sever weather forcasted to hit the Nashville area around 11 PM tonight, then pass through and be clear for tomorrow, although the temperature is supposed to ge down to the upper 70's, so dress warmly.See you there at 9:30.
    J P

    September 8, 2012

  • Allie P.

    Was a bit concerned about the weather forecast-- Cookeville, TN is showing 60% chance of rain tomorrow! Guess will see how it looks in the a.m.!

    September 7, 2012

    • Laurie Bruno CPR C.

      only 40 percent from 10-11 and then, it drops off sharply. By the time we get the cars/trucks to the drop off spot it will be 10:30 before we get on the river.

      September 7, 2012

  • Maryellen S.

    Excerpts from CANOE THE CANEY: River and fishing etiquette is something we feel is worth mentioning. For the fisherman, either stay behind anyone with a rod and reel so as not to disturb them or their line or just simply ask which direction they would like you to go. Either way, pass fishermen quietly without disturbing their hole or line.
    Make room for others at heavily used access points. Excessive noise is frustrating to fishermen and other river users so please try to keep the noise to a minimum. Limit groups to a moderate size when possible, smaller groups are less intrusive (we might want to stagger our large group).

    Respect the river and appreciate its beauty by leaving it the same or better than when they arrived.

    1 · September 7, 2012

    • Maryellen S.

      Yeah, sometimes can't be helped...either the current is fast or the best "line" is right for paddling and not for the fishermen...I think there have been a lot of recent complaints; hence, the comment. Mutual respect and courtesy for all river users...

      September 7, 2012

    • Laurie Bruno CPR C.

      I think it is a very good idea to break up into groups. Also, be careful not to put your kayaks to close to the rivers edge when at the put in because the generator will be going and the water rises, so pull your kayaks back quite a ways until everyone gets back from the drop off spot.

      September 7, 2012

  • Cathy

    Hello, Perhaps someone would be able to help with putting my kayak back in the car top carrier after our trip. I had ordered a device to assist with solo uploading but it has not arrived. Practicing with my husband today the loading by myself didn't go to well. If necessary I can just wait until the next trip. Looking forwar to the trip.

    September 7, 2012

    • Allie P.

      This group is so great , you won't even have to worry about that!

      September 7, 2012

    • Laurie Bruno CPR C.

      You will have help, my husband and I will be there to assist you.

      September 7, 2012

  • Maria C. S.

    Jason and I can't wait! We've been looking forward to this for weeks! Look forward to seeing everyone tomorrow morning. 9:30 at the dam.

    September 7, 2012

  • Ann

    Will be at the put in

    September 7, 2012

  • Powell A.

    As a die hard fisherman of 46 years - since old enough to hold a cane pole - I appreciate the concern and respect for fisherman. The manner in which this group behaves is one thing that keeps me coming back! Proud to be a member!

    2 · September 7, 2012

  • Maryellen S.

    One more thing. I've been told the Caney Fork is one of Jenny B's favorite rivers to paddle (she also loved the Hiwassee which she called "Hi-Wash-Me"). I know her spirit will be with us tomorrow as we enjoy and commune with nature and each other...I'm dedicating my time on the river tomorrow to Jenny. May her sweet spirit rest in peace.

    2 · September 7, 2012

  • Mike

    JP, 9:30 at the put in.
    My number is[masked] for anyone that wants to have it.

    September 7, 2012

  • J P Morgan S.

    What time are we going to meet at the Put In? I will be driving from Nashville so I need to know what time to be there. Also can I get a Cell Phone number just in case I need to contact someone.
    J P

    September 7, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    My daughter and I are going to rent kayaks and join you this Saturday. This is our first adventure with your group. We will be coming from Cookeville, and will leave our car at Betty's Island. The rental company is going to meet us there and transport us to the dam so we will meet you all there.

    September 6, 2012

  • Mike

    Mary Ellen S. sent me a message. There will be be lots of fisherman on the river. Let's try to respect them and give them distance.

    September 6, 2012

  • Mike

    See you on Saturday Cathy!

    September 6, 2012

  • Cathy

    Hello, this will be my first adventure with y'all. I will be trying out a new/used kayak and looking forward to the trip. I will be driving and have ample room for passengers.

    September 6, 2012

  • Mike

    Rhonda, it would be fine to meet at the put in. We will shuttle some cars to the take out. You can bring a second car only if you want to.
    Debbie, either Fairview or the put in is fine. My truck is full, but am sure we will consolidate and carpool from Fairview.

    September 5, 2012

  • Rhonda S.

    Hi, I just joined this group. We are out of White House,Tn. I still work in Bowling Green. We are going this Saturday the 3 of us. Can we meet at the put in? Should we take 2 vehicles and put one at the take out? See ya at 9:30

    September 5, 2012

  • Alex S.

    Hello, I'm new to this group, and I'm looking forward to going, but I don't have a kayak, paddle or pdf yet. Does anyone out there have one that I can borrow for this trip?

    August 31, 2012

    • matt w.

      Alex, if you cant find one to borrow, I have rentals. Please call my cell[masked]

      September 1, 2012

  • rich

    there is a cave to visit ,on caney fork on the left side, a little before Bettys Island
    your timing to put in water should be near perfect for the water release/generator run..
    but check schdules to be shure..

    August 28, 2012

  • Mike

    9:30 at the dam (put in) sounds right Tangie.
    Lets plan on meeting at the Buffalo Valley Boat Ramp.

    August 28, 2012

  • Powell A.

    a few of us will meet up in Scottsville to ride together - will cfm who nxt wk - everybody hv a fun and SAFE Labor Day wknd (i'll be driving my behunkus off to visit family!)

    August 28, 2012

  • Noemi

    I'll be coming out of Nash-vegas and traveling solo. . .hope to see you then!

    1 · August 28, 2012

  • Tangie S.

    I'm planning on staying at a cabin there so will meet you guys at the dam. I'm guessing I'll meet you about 9:30?

    1 · August 28, 2012

  • J P Morgan S.

    I'll meet everyone at the put it, since I will be coming from Hendersonville Tennessee. See you there.

    August 28, 2012

  • Mike

    If I had to guess.... We will be back in Bowling Green by 7.

    1 · August 27, 2012

  • Pat

    Guess-a- ment on when we will be back?

    August 27, 2012

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