Paddle Georgia 2018 Journey Details
Georgia returns to middle Georgia for a journey down the lightly
traveled but beautiful Yellow River in suburban metro Atlanta before
descending the Ocmulgee River to Macon. You’ll slide over
shoals on the Yellow, portage around decades-old mill dams and
cross a small portion of Lake Jackson before descending to the
fall line over lively shoals and rapids between Monitcello and
Macon on the Ocmulgee. If you like paddling peaceful Piedmont rivers
broken by frequent shoals and rapids this is your journey!
Paddle Georgia takes on the Yellow River for the first time.
Beginning in the long shadows of Stone Mountain, the rock that
underlies Georgia’s iconic mountain will be revealed along
our paddle route as it creates impressive shoals and rapids at
old mill dams in Milstead and Porterdale. Portaging around these
historic dams will provide access to little traveled and spectacularly
beautiful portions of this unheralded river. Leaving behind Atlanta’s
suburbs, we will travel the Ocmulgee which sports its own sets
of impressive shoals—including a Class III obstacle that
we will portage. The Ocmulgee even takes us past Juliette, the
famous shooting location for the movie Fried Green Tomatoes (you
can stop and sample some during our portage around Juliette Dam).
The trip ends at Macon’s Amerson Park, the city’s premiere
riverside park where we will enjoy our traditional river’s
Paddle Georgia 2018 Itinerary on the
Yellow and Ocmulgee
Day 1, June 16: Milstead Mamba – Yellow River Park
to Milstead Dam - 14 miles
Day 2, June 17: Porterdale Polka – Milstead Dam to
Porterdale - 15 miles
Day 3, June 18: Rocky Plains Rumba – Porterdale to
Bert Adams Scout Camp - 11 miles
Day 4, June 19: Lake Jackson Jive –Bert Adams Scout
Camp to Lake Jackson- 6 miles
Day 5, June 20: Lloyd Shoals Limbo - Lloyd Shoals Dam to
Ga. 83- 13 miles
Day 6, June 21: Fried Green Tomatoes Tap –Ga. 83
to Popes Ferry- 14 miles
Day 7, June 22: Macon Moonwalk – Popes Ferry to Amerson
Park - 11 miles
Day 1: Milstead
from Gwinnett County’s Yellow River Park just three
miles from Stone Mountain, this 14-mile jaunt is highlighted
by impressive rock outcroppings, shoals and rapids that
serve as a reminder of the granite monolith and the underlying
geology of the area. The day ends at historic Milstead
Dam with a trailer-assisted portage through the ruins of
the circa 1902 cotton mill.
Day 2: Porterdale Polka It’s
15 miles from the shoals below Milstead Dam to Porterdale
Dam, situated in an idyllic mill village, complete with
imposing riverside mill buildings that have been restored
into residences. Between the two, the paddling is peaceful
with long stretches of flatwater and occasional small shoals.
The day ends at Yellow River Park, our campsite for the
first four days of our journey.
Day 3: Rocky Plains Rumba A
trailer-assisted portage around Porterdale Dam will provide
entry into the spectacularly beautiful shoal complex below
the dam—a portion of river that is rarely visited by
paddlers. Beyond Cedar Shoals, the river returns to its peaceful
ways running 11 miles to Bert Adams Scout Camp.
Day 4: Lake
Jackson Jive No
Paddle Georgia would be complete without a little lake paddling!
especially true on the oft-dammed Yellow and Ocmulgee Rivers.
This six-mile day spends about half its time on the flowing
Yellow before the river finally widens into the backwaters
of Lake Jackson. A trailer-assisted portage will take us
to our launch site for Day 5 on the Ocmulgee River.
Day 5: Lloyd Shoals Limbo This
13-mile introduction to the Ocmulgee is a beauty. Lively
shoals, expansive islands and the Oconee National Forest
highlight the run that includes a stop and un-assisted portage
around historic Lamar Mill, where the stone remains of this
circa-1840s mill can still be seen. The portage route also
includes a perfectly-sized ledge and waterfall ideal for
cooling off on a hot summer day.
Day 6: Fried Green Tomatoes TapMovie
buffs and foodies will have a time on this 14-mile ride.
Our route takes us through Juliette, the picturesque circa-1920s
mill village that was converted to a movie set for the filming
of the 1991 box office hit Fried Green Tomatoes. During our
trailer-assisted portage around the old mill dam, you can
stop and order a plate of the town’s signature dish
at the Whistle Stop Café. For those who prefer water-based
excitement, there will be plenty of that, including a wild
ride over ledges at Dames Ferry rapid.
Day 7: Macon Moon Walk The
shoals continue on this final 11-mile day to Macon as the
Ocmulgee makes its final descent from the rocky Piedmont
and into the sandy Coastal Plain at Macon. The trip ends
at Macon-Bibb County’s Amerson Park where we’ll
enjoy our traditional river’s end feast and celebration.
Virtual Paddle Georgia Journey!
2018 VIRTUAL MAP
The map below provides locations for launch sites, take out sites,
portages and campsites for Paddle GA 2018.
Georgia Adopt-A-Stream Research Project
Join Georgia Adopt-A-Stream to assess the
health of the river. During the trip, you can become certified
as a Georgia Adopt-A-Stream citizen water monitor and assist the
Adopt-A-Stream team with their week-long water monitoring program.
Click here to
learn more about Georgia Adopt-A-Stream. If you are interested
in becoming a certified citizen water monitor, be sure to indicate
so when you register for Paddle Georgia!