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Elk River in Tennessee

A self-supported trip created by guest-paddler

Trip Overview

Elk River from Elkton to Prospect

My wife and I started out by dropping her car off at the VETO road boat ramp. Very nice, open access area but no amenities or concessions. The gas station up from the bridge at our put-in location has some fishing tackle. Since we weren't fishing I didn't browse. After we drove the SUV back to the Bridge on 31 with our Kayaks we had an easy start except for a pop-up T-storm. The access at the HWY 31 Bridge is easy as well, somewhat less open, but if the water is the right level it is a good place to start.

The float itself is very nice, although I think that the Elk River might be better named the OLD TIRE river for the first 1/4 mile we traveled. Seriously folks, quit trashing the river! Anyway, the river does narrow at four or five junctions and there a coupla little sub class I rapids, otherwise a nice float.

The Bridge at Hannah Bridge Road is NOT a possible put-in as far as I could see. There were at least four good rope swings along the way with pebble beaches to ground and swim if you wanted.

Check the Tim's Ford release schedule before going. We had attempted this once previously, but when we got to the put in the river was a raging torrent that I wouldn't do on a bet. Spotted several egrets, turtles, gar fish, and something mammalian that I am not confident in identifying.

The one section where I had to laugh was a where there was what appeared to be a hunting/fishing camp resplendent with rebel flag hanging...I swear that this looked exactly like the porch scene off of Deliverance, but no banjos were involved. To make this even better, my wife had dared me to wear a bright pink, skin tight Frankie Says Relax shirt as a joke on this trip. Despite my mental images of being "Ned Beattyified" We actually ran into NO ONE on the river at all. We are school teachers and went on a Tuesday afternoon, so I guess everyone else was at work.


None what so ever!


no fees


31 north through Ardmore Ala. You will see the bridge, the put in is underneath. The veto road take out is a quick left after the bridge (Hwy 273) which dead-ends at VETO road, go left and you're there

Trip Details

  • Water Type: River/Creek (Up to Class II)

Trip Location