We met at the Smith River Sports complex for a nice Sunday afternoon paddle, May 16, 2010. The early morning weather was threatening skies but we decided it would probably clear off a bit by noon and it was worth taking a shot at getting on the river. Arriving at the sports complex boat ramp I was met by Marsha, Marsha and Elizabeth. We off-loaded the boats and were getting ready to set shuttle to the Mitchell Bridge Canoe Access when more paddlers arrived with the same idea.
First, Martin Gardner and his two boys would be heading down in their canoe and sit on top kayak, while the next group to arrive included Jody and April Ferguson and their friends.
It was really great to see so many people utilizing the new access made possible by the Harvest Foundation, Henry County, The Smith River Sports Authority and Dan River basin Association.
After setting shuttle down at Mitchell Bridge we hit the river about 2 pm. Its a short 1/2 mile to the first little riffle where you can get your "river legs" and any beginners can test there skills at going through simple class 1 rapids. They need to get warmed up quick because coming up in another 1.5 miles would be Eggleston Falls, a class 2+ rapid with a series of drops and maneuvers.
You can portage here or go river left to avoid the falls and the drops but the adventuresome will want to run the best of the white water on this section.