A Wet State
Printer Friendly Meadow River (Lower)

Meadow River (Lower)

Stretch: US-19 to Mt. Lookout Rd (or further to the Gauley and Mason Branch Rd)
Difficulty: Class IV+ to V
Distance: 3.5 miles (or +1 on Meadow and +2.75 on the Gauley)
Flows: 450 to 1,500 cfs. The gauge is upstream, so you add ~20-25% for accrual. Visit the American Whitewater flow page
Gradient: 108 fpm average
Put-in: Under the US-19 Bridge
Take-out: Trail up to Mt. Lookout Rd
Shuttle: 3.5 miles (10 minutes one way)
Season: Winter and Spring from rain plus occasional thunderstorms in Summer and Fall
Written: © 2015
Featured in A Wet State #99 and in A Wet State's contribution to World Kayak's Video Guide

Mi 0.25 Mi 0.6: Mi 0.95: Mi 1.05: Mi 1.15: Mi 1.5: Mi 1.7: Mi 2.3: Mi 2.4: Mi 2.7: Mi 2.85: Mi 3.0:

For more details on the run, see the AW write-up...

Take-out: From Summersville, WV, head South on US-19. You will pass WV-129 (which goes to the Upper Gauley put-in), look for the first right which comes after 3.6 miles and turn onto Mt Lookout Rd. We stayed left at a fork early on to stay on the road for a total of 2.2 miles. At the end of the road there is a muddy turnout on the left, just across from the last house's drive way. This is where the trail comes up. From the river, after Double Undercut you will go through one rapid, around an island, and then one more small rapid before you will see a house size rock with a small rock balanced on top on the right shore, the trail starts just behind that rock. The trail climbs in 3 segments. The first is up a nice enough trail. You will then head left and climb a washout section. This then hits the old road where the gradient levels off and you head right, up to your car. It takes ~30 minutes to do the hike. It is steep.

Takeout Option 2: If you have time to set a longer shuttle, taking out at the take-out of the Upper Gauley is great fun, dropping you into the river just above Lost Paddle. From Fayyetville, head North on US-19 to WV-129 and turn left. Continue for 7 miles, a mile before you get to highway 39, turn left on Panther Mountain Rd (has a sign marked for river access). Follow this down. At one point there is a big fork, stay right (left takes you back out to Highway 129). When you get to the obvious meadow, look for the dirt rd to the left which leads quickly to the private boater parking (in the meadow) or if it is off-season continue straight and just after the hairpoint turn to the left, look for the left turn on a dirt road which will lead you in a mile down to the river level access.

Put-in: From the hiking take-out, head back out to US-19. Turn right and go 1.1 miles. Look for a turn-out on the right just before the bridge. Park just outside the no parking signs. You are on the side of the highway here. But this is put-in. The trail drops under the bridge to the river.

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