PADDLE GEORGIA FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How many people participate?
Each year, between 300 and 450 people participate, ranging in age from 4 to 84. Most of these adventurers are “thru-paddlers” traveling all seven days. A smaller number choose Paddle Georgia Lite, our weekend-only and two-day options.
Can I go for just part of the trip?
Yes. Our Paddle Georgia Lite package includes the first two days of the trip (June 21-22) or the last two days of the trip (June 26-27) A limited number of spaces will be available for these options based on how many thru-paddlers register.
What does my registration fee include?
Your Paddle Georgia registration fee includes a T-shirt, boat decal, maps and river descriptions, souvenir cup, a year’s membership to Georgia River Network, camping with bath facilities, shuttles to campsites, entertainment, activities, educational programs and special swag from our sponsors.
What’s a Canoe-A-Thon?
Like a walk-a-thon, Paddle Georgia’s Canoe-A-Thon will raise money for Georgia River Network. Each participant is asked to solicit donations on a per-mile basis. Those participants generating more than $850 may choose to have their registration fee reimbursed, and the top 250 Canoe-A-Thon participants who raise at least $300 will be eligible for priority registration for Paddle Georgia 2021. Canoe-A-Thoners compete for gifts and prizes, including new canoes and kayaks and other great goods from The Outside World and our many other sponsors.
How much does it cost?
There’s not a better deal to be found! For about $90 a day, you get an all-inclusive educational adventure vacation that includes three meals a day. And, you travel for seven days through beautiful scenery without ever stopping at the gas pump! Paddle Georgia thru-paddler registration fees range from $425 to $230. Paddle Georgia Lite registration fees range from $120 to $70. These fees may be reimbursed if the participant garners more than $850 in Canoe-A-Thon pledges. Registration fees do no include meal plans. Meal plans begin at $250 for our “full meal deal” (breakfast, lunch and dinner throughout the trip) or you can choose from other options and provide some of your own meals. Learn more under “Do I need to bring food?”
Do I need to be an experienced paddler?
What about boats? And, what do I need to bring?
You are responsible for bringing a canoe, kayak, paddleboard or other person-powered vessel, paddles and a personal floatation device. Paddle Georgia does not supply or rent boats. See our list of outfitters to find an outfitter near your home or secure your rental boat from one of the Flint River river listed below. Also bring standard camping gear including a tent and personal items. Camp gear is limited to 40 pounds and two bags per person. Your boat should be of a size and weight that you and another person can carry. No camp stoves or fuel are permitted. If you need to rent a vessel for the trip, try the following outfitters located near our route:
Flint River Outdoor Center in Thomaston 706-647-2633
Gerald Lawhorn Scouting Base in Molena 706-227-4556
Where do we camp?
For Paddle Georgia 2020 we will camp at three locations each offering a slightly different experience. Our first three nights (June 20-22) will be spent at Camp Thunder and the Gerald Lawhorn Scouting Base which is bordered by the Flint River. The Boy Scout camp offers all the amenities you’d expect in a full-time camp operated by the Boy Scouts. Our next four nights (June 23-26) will be spent at Taylor County High School near downtown Butler (pop. 1,819) with camping on school grounds and in the school’s gymnasium. Our final night will be Oglethorpe City Park in Oglethorpe where we will stage our River’s End Celebration. To get more details about our campsites, visit the Journey Details page.
Do I need to bring food?
Breakfast, dinner and sack lunches will be provided for a fee (see registration page). Participants may choose to bring their own food, but cooking is not permitted at the campsites and access to ice is not guaranteed. Participants are strongly encouraged to make use of the meals provided at campsites. Meal plans begin at $250 for all breakfasts, lunches and dinners throughout the trip or you craft your own meal plan using some of our catered meals and coordinating your own servings for other meals.
Where do I leave my car?
For a small fee, thru-paddlers (those paddling the whole week) can take advantage of the Kick-Off Day Shuttle or the Campsite to Campsite shuttles. The Kick-Off Day shuttle allows participants to leave their vehicles in Oglethorpe on June 20 and be shuttled along with boats and gear to the trip’s starting point and Camp Thunder. The Campsite to Campsite shuttles allow participants to move their car from campsite to campsite as we make our way down river. On days when we move to a new campsite, drivers will be shuttled from the day’s take out site on the river back to the initial campsite to retrieve their vehicles and then drive to the next campsite. Shuttle services to nearby amenities such as grocery stores, restaurants and drug stores will be provided each afternoon upon request. Those who choose not to use the Kick-Off Day or Campsite to Campsite shuttles must make their own arrangements.
June 21-22 Paddle Georgia Lite paddlers need not worry about shuttles. Your vehicle will stay at Camp Thunder and our daily shuttles to and from the river will get you where you need to go. At the end of your journey, you’ll only need to go pick up your boat at your final take out site.
June 26-27 Paddle Georgia Lite paddlers will be shuttled via the Campsite to Campsite shuttles to retrieve their vehicles at Taylor County High School.
Can I fish during Paddle Georgia?
Yes, but you are responsible for obtaining appropriate licenses and understanding and following the proper rules and regulations.
Paddle Georgia Policies:
For your safety and the safety of others.
- No alcoholic beverages will be allowed.
- All participants must attend the pre-launch safety briefing. Participants must adhere to the safety guidelines presented.
- Participants must wear a properly fitted U.S. Coast Guard approved personal floatation device at all times on the river.
- Participants under age 18 are the responsibility of, and must be accompanied by, a parent or guardian.
- Sorry, no pets allowed.
- All participants must sign a Medical and Emergency Contact Information sheet and a Waiver of Claims and Release of Liability form. Parents must sign for children under the age of 18. (These forms will be sent in the info. packet.)
- Person-powered watercraft only.
- All participants must respect private property along the river.
- All participants must have basic paddling skills and be capable of self-rescue in the water.
- No more than 2 children under the age of 12 per adult guardian.
- All participants, especially small children, must have a designated seat in the vessel in which they are traveling.
- Georgia River Network is not responsible for any personal property that may be lost, damaged, or stolen during the trip.
- No firearms are permitted on the trip.
Code of Conduct
At Georgia River Network, we like to think of our river adventure participants as our “river family.” We come from many different backgrounds, but the river is the great equalizer and our common bond. We want all participants to treat one another as family.
- Be respectful of all participants, including their property, their person and their personal views. On our river adventures you will paddle, eat and camp with people that are very different from you. Please respect and celebrate those differences.
- Be helpful. If you see someone that needs a hand in camp or on the river, please lend yours.
- Be courteous. Be prepared to wait in lines for restrooms, shuttle buses, meals and more. Remember, we are all in the same boat; only by working together can we get everyone safely down the river.
- Do not use inappropriate language. This is a family event with participants of all ages.
- Do not verbally or physically intimidate or abuse other participants.
- Do not become intoxicated or under the influence of mind-altering drugs.
- Do not violate quiet hours by engaging in loud talk and disruptive behavior between 10 p.m. and 6:30 a.m.
Violations of these policies can result in the participant being removed from the event without refund.
Changes can be made to Kick Off and Trip’s End shuttle, meals, and merchandise through May 31. Any registration cancellations made prior to June 1, will incur a 10% processing fee. As of June 1, no refunds will be granted.
The paddling and time on the river is, of course, the reason we come but the people that come together for the week have become the main reason I do the trip. It is the highlight of the summer.