Coosa River - Wetumpka, AL
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member xptwo
N 32° 36.911 W 086° 15.244
16S E 569983 N 3608872
Quick Description: There is a public launch point for canoes and kayaks just below the Jordan River Dam. The trip has some easier rapids and can go as far as Wetumpka.
Location: Alabama, United States
Date Posted: 5/23/2013 4:26:28 AM
Waymark Code: WMH4VZ
Published By: Groundspeak Charter Member briansnat
Views: 3

Long Description:
The launch point is off of US Hwy 231, north of Wetumpka, AL. One follows the signs to Jordan Dam, then turns on dirt roads to the launch area. While this is a public launch point, we learned about it when a group of friends from the Alabama Geocachers Society gathered to rent kayaks and visit an earthcache down the river from the launch point. While we know that people do travel this in personal boats, we used the rental route as the rental store, Coosa Outdoor Center, provided all the equipment and transportation to the launch point. They also had a docking spot along the river by the store, allowing us to get back to our car easily.

This was our first experience at kayaking. In our particular case, we rented a two-person sit-on-top kayak. The Center provided the life vests and helmets along with the kayak and oars. They took us to the launch site below Jordan Dam where we newbys had enough time to learn how to control our kayaks. At the end of our trip, we put in at their facility, changed into dry clothes, and left. It was a great experience.

The listed coordinates are for parking at the launch area, as are most of the photos. The area is far enough below the dam that the water is calm and easy for taking time to gain confidence in handling. One can stop at the rock at Moccasin Gap, the place of the most difficult rapid (a II or III depending on water flow). One can avoid that rapid by going on the other side of the rock or even carrying the boat the few yards over the rock.

The following from the Coosa Outdoor Center web page below gives more information.

"“Do the Coosa” with Coosa Outdoor Center. We rent canoes, kayaks and sit-on-tops at 172 River Road in Wetumpka, AL from mid-March to the end of October. Reservations may be made by calling 334 201-5510 or 334 567-3788.

Our put-in is located at the Jordan Dam East Boat Ramp between Jordan Dam and a 70-foot rock outcropping that some call the end of the Appalachian Mountains.

Whether you are a beginner or experienced paddler, young or more mature, you’ll have a great time “Doing the Coosa!” if you are physically in shape. The scenery on the Coosa is beautifully serene. One often has the opportunity to see osprey, eagles and great blue herons. The Coosa River is also the home of the Tulotomo Magnificent Snail which is an endangered species.

The first half mile of the river is moving flat water which is a great place to become familiar with your boat and comfortable with the water.

The rapids begin at River Falls with a number of Class I and II. The rapids are interspersed with pools of flat water. Class II/III Moccasin Gap is located about halfway down the whitewater stretch of the Coosa. The river center rock at Moccasin Gap is a great place to stop and swim, picnic with your family and watch the kayakers do their boating tricks.

There are numerous rapids following Moccasin Gap with the last rapid being Corn Creek Rapid. It is only a few hundred yards downstream from the large white house on river right (you’ll see a Lighthouse adjacent to the house). Just past the Corn Creek Rapid, you will need to move to left of river center to see our bright yellow “Coosa Outdoor Center Take-Out” banner. If you go past the small wooden deck (river left) on which the large bright yellow banner is hung, you will miss the take-out and you must turn around and paddle back 100 ft. There is a fee for pick-ups further down the river!"
Parking/put-in/launching information:
Parking available at public launch area below Jordan Dam.

Paddling conditions to be expected:
Flatwater river with a few rapids.

Difficulty of the trip:
Easy enough for beginners and families.

Length of trip: 2 - 4 hours depending on your own pace.

None unless you want to cover a few yards over a rock to skip the last rapids.

Permits required:

Type of trip:
One-way, so shuttle or transportation is needed.

Other information:
The rock at Moccasin Gap is large enough for a picnic but it can get crowded on weekends and holidays.

Take-out Coordinates: Not Listed

Visit Instructions:
Logging waymarks in this category requires a picture of your boat and your GPS at the given parking/launching coordinates,and a brief description of your canoe/kayak trip.

Additional photos and information and/or suggestions for future waymarkers will be appreciated, but is not necessary.

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