Upper Suwannee River in Georgia
Hiyaking on the Suwannee River
Sometimes you just got to paddle on a river no matter what common sense and river gauges tell you. This was one of those weekends.
Here is a picture of the bridge at US 441 at Fargo with a gauge reading of 0.85 and a flow rate of 11 cubic feet per second. It looked like there might be enough channels thru the river bed so we decided to try the section of the Suwannee from Griffs Fish Camp to Fargo (about 14 miles).
This should have been an easy overnight trip. We should have known better when the guy at Griffs told us that there "might" be enough water for us to paddle in. Even the trees were laughing at us.
At first, everything was fine then we started running across some sandbars. After 2 miles, the river started to disappear for a short stretch then reappear again. Next thing you know these pull-overs started getting longer and closer together.
After about 6+ miles we found a real nice sandbar to camp on complete with bear tracks. As the campfire burned down after a good meal we were treated to a sky full of stars for a perfect evening. After a not so early start we started Hiyaking again. Hiyaking is a term we came up with to describe dragging your boat down the river over sandbars.
Looking at the high water marks on some of the trees it was hard to believe how high it could get. Next time I do this stretch of river it will be with a river gauge reading of over 3 feet at US 441 Fargo, Georgia.
Stephen Foster State Park is about 10 miles NE of Fargo, GA for camping
Head west on I-10 out of Jacksonville, FL. Turn north on SR 441 and go across the FL/GA border to Fargo, GA.
- Trip Duration: 2-3 Day Trip
- Sport/Activity: Kayaking, Canoeing
- Skill Level: Advanced
- Water Type: River/Creek (Up to Class II)