PADDLE GEORGIA 2021
paddle georgia 2021
14 River Basins in 12 Months!
Regrettably, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Georgia River Network will not host its annual Paddle Georgia event in 2021. The event, which attracts 300-400 participants for a week of river fun each summer, simply is not practical or safe during our nation’s current healthcare crisis.
Instead, we will host a series of at least 15 river adventures for small groups with COVID-safe protocols followed on all trips. These adventures will explore each of Georgia’s 14 major river basins, from the Tennessee basin in far North Georgia to the St. Marys basin along the Georgia-Florida line.
Seven of these trips will be bike-paddle adventures at which we’ll use bicycles to run our shuttles and avoid placing participants together in buses, vans or vehicles–a kind of river biathlon! Our other seven trips will be weekend canoe camping trips with catered meals, top-notch riverside campsites, educational programs, and, of course, great paddling routes.
Our annual 7-day Paddle Georgia event will take place June 20-26 on the lower Flint River and will be limited to less than 24 participants. It will be a true canoe/kayak camping adventure with riverside camping each night.
Our adventures in Georgia’s river basins begin in January and continue through November. Registration Opens Soon! Scroll down for descriptions of each adventure.
Paddle Georgia 2021
FLINT RIVER JUNE 20-26
Paddle Georgia 2021 will take place on the Flint River in Southwest Georgia Sunday, June 20, through Saturday, June 26. This will be a true canoe/kayak camping adventure with on-river camping each night, and will be limited to less than 24 participants. The route will run about 100 miles from Crisp County Power Dam near Cordele to the Bainbridge Boat Basin Park.
Like a typical Paddle Georgia adventure, we’ll serve up catered meals and daily educational and entertainment programs. At each campsite, we will have access to basic amenities including restrooms and showers, and in some cases, access to indoor accommodations (more details to come!)
We expect it to be like no other paddle trip we’ve ever hosted…because we’ve never hosted one quite like this!
Participants registering for this adventure are asked to raise at least $1000 in our Paddle Georgia 2021 Canoe-a-thon. Additional details and registration information will be posted as it becomes available.
PADDLE GEORGIA 2022 JUNE 19-25
We expect to be on the other side of the pandemic by summer 2022, and at that time we will return to our regularly scheduled paddling! That means a week-long adventure with 300-plus of your closest friends on Paddle Georgia 2022. We will follow the same route along the Flint River we planned for in 2020. Read on below to learn about the route and other details for Paddle Georgia 2022.
Our route on the Flint is one of the premiere paddling destinations in Georgia. No where else in Georgia can you get the scenery and landscape along a river that you find in the Pine Mountain and Sprewell Bluff area. The views are spectacular. Lively Class I shoals–the haunts of the world famous shoal bass and lesser-known Halloween darter–are frequent for the first fours days of the journey followed by three days of flatwater, Coastal Plain paddling. The trip features one short portage around Class III Yellow Jacket Shoals.
We’ll have three campsites: Camp Thunder, a Boy Scouts of America Flint River Council facility, where you’ll have the option of tent camping or renting private platform tents with mattresses. The camp also features an air-conditioned dining hall where we’ll have breakfasts and a beautiful open-air pavilion where we will serve dinner and hold evening programs.
Our second campsite is Taylor County High School in Butler. This is small town Georgia at its best. The school is within walking distance of downtown with restaurants, grocery store and more. Tent camping will be on lawns surrounding the school and on the school’s athletic practice field. Indoor “camping” will be available in the school gymnasium.
Our final night, for those who choose to stay overnight, is Oglethorpe City Park with tent camping in the park and indoor camping at an adjacent gymnasium. This will be the site of our River’s End Celebration with live music, a fish fry from Flint Riverkeeper, games, the Vibe Kayak Ducky Derby and more.
The event will run from Saturday to Saturday. Our kick off day will be Saturday, June 18, with our first day of paddling on Sunday, June 19 and our last day of paddling on Saturday, June 25. This should help participants who want to avoid taking an extra day of work vacation to arrive for kick off day activities on Friday. As in previous year, two Paddle Lite options are available: June 19-20 and June 24-25.
And, through special shuttle services, paddlers will, for a small fee, be able to easily shuttle their vehicles from campsite to campsite.
Our last trip on the upper Flint River was in 2008, a journey that was remembered as “Puddle Georgia” because of extreme low water levels. We’re hoping for more water in 2022 (and no more pandemic!), and as always, we will develop contingency plans in the event that water levels make portions of our journey impractical!
Daily paddle trips averaging 14 miles
Nightly camping with meals, games, entertainment and educational programs
Tours of historic sites, industrial facilities and more
Chemical and biological water monitoring opportunities
Companionship and camaraderie with hundreds of fellow paddlers
Paddle Georgia 2021 Canoe-a-thon
Each year, dozens of Paddle Georgia participants compete in our Paddle Georgia Canoe-a-thon. Participants raise money for Georgia River Network by soliciting donations from friends, family members and business associates. Those who raise the most money win prizes, including new boats and paddling equipment from our sponsors and are eligible to have Paddle Georgia registration fees reimbursed. Click here to learn more and get started.
in Pictures and Stories
We love the whole experience: seeing old friends again, meeting new ones, and of course being on the river, which just brings peace to your soul – unless the Pirates are around the next bend!
Each river has a surprise somewhere in it, and I’ve felt like I was given a gift every year.
Summer Camp for Grownups! I had one of the most remarkable experiences of my life. It was well-run, fairly organized, fun and rein-forced my love of nature and people in general.