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By Justin Owen

Spring has arrived on the Cumberland Plateau, ushering in warmer weather and heavy rainfall. There is always a chance of a big storm this time of year, and two to three inches of rain fell over the last few days in this wintertime playground. As waters began to rise I found myself on the old standby… Upper Caney Fork. The level rose almost a foot in the time that we were on the water evoking thoughts that we may be in for something special. There were plenty of options for day two, none of which involved going to the Clear Creek drainage in my mind at the time. As I awoke mid morning to see epic water, no epic kayaking looked like it would be taking place. I had almost decided on a solo mission to Rock Island when my phone rang with an eager group of friends going to a micro creek on the other end of the county. I knew it would not be fringe class 5 creekboating… but I have always been intrigued by this run, and today was the day to experience this jewel.

I headed over to meet them at Lilly Bridge to start hiking up Little Clear Creek. When I arrived, it was obvious that we would have plenty of water. There was a beautiful surf wave above the bridge on Clear Creek with excellent park and play potential. My attention did not stay fixated for long, and we started the hike. Excitement grew as I saw a series of fun drops with a juicy level on them. We made it to the top and put on to begin a wonderful whitewater experience. The run is short, but all agreed that it was well worth it. Most of the bigger drops were captured with my Oregon Scientific helmet cam. It also got the beatdown that ensued when I gutted the monster hole at the takeout on a floodstage Clear Creek. I even had enough time to break out the playboat and surf the wave that I saw on the way up. What a wonderful day!

The link to the video is:


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