The Cherokee Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America is hosting The Great Hiwassee Raft Race Saturday, August 26th, 2023. Scouts build rafts out of bamboo and inner tubes and then race down the upper Hiwassee River.
Amanda Smith, Chota Canoe Club member and Raft Race organizer, is requesting your assistance with safety at the put-in, the public ramp near the train trestle, the takeout, the ramp at the Highway 411 bridge, or along the 5.6-mile section of river between these locations.
To be a qualified safety boater, you must have successfully completed either a swiftwater rescue class or another whitewater safety course. You must be proficient and confident in rescue skills. You must also have the correct craft; no sit-in-kayaks without a skirt and floatation and no open canoes without flotation. If you have a skirt, you must either be proficient in a wet exit or with rolling.
Meet at the public boat ramp near the train trestle bridge at 12:30 PM to check in.
Each raft will be assigned two safety boaters, one as point and the other as sweep. The Scout-made raft will float 3-8 Scouts. The takeout will be the 411 bridge, so start spacing the rafts appropriately on river left after the Gee Creek takeout. Scouts may get out and swim provided they stay near the raft with nose and toes up facing downstream and are upstream of their raft. One scout must remain on the raft while the other swim.
This is not a Chota event, but we are supporting the Boy Scouts. The registration deadline is a week prior to the event, August 19th.
Point of contact: Amanda Smith
Required gear: Coast guard-approved PFD, whitewater canoe or kayak with floatation, skirt for your kayak, paddle, appropriate clothing for the water’s temperature, closed toes shoes (no water sandals), a water bottle that clips into your boat, first aid kit, throw rope, whistle
Optional gear: Lunch and snacks
Once you register, make sure you receive an automatic email with the exact meet-up time, location, and any other special details. If you do not, email Amanda at firstname.lastname@example.org
Point of contact: Amanda Smith via email
Hiwassee State Scenic River, 115 Ellis Creek Road, Reliance, Tennessee, United States, 37369