Information on Kings River

Kings River

	Rating: III+ *
	TDCR: 5657
	Location: Madison Co.; Put in at Dripping Springs low water bridge
		north of Hwy. 16 just east of Boston.  Take out at
		Hwy. 74 bridge west of Kingston.
		Area Map
	Topo Quad(s): Weathers, Kingston
	Gradient: Steep at the start and non-existent at the end...
	Length: 11 mi
	Season: FLOOD
	Gauge: There is a gauge on the downstream side of the Dripping Springs
		bridge at the put-in.  It is graduated in 1/10 inch increments.
		Minimum is 1.0 ft., optimum from 1.5 to 2.5 ft., and if 
		water is running over the bridge the run is too high.  The
		Upper Kings is usually runnable when other area streams, such 
		as the Mulberry and White Rivers, are in flood.
	Hazards: strainers, tight fast-paced rapids 
	Description: This run is not to be confused with the pastoral Kings R.
        that Tom Kennon describes in his book "Ozark Whitewater." This        is the Upper Kings that Kennon briefly mentions.  A serious
		class III+ run, the Upper Kings warms up for the first mile
		until Kings Falls (III), a sheer drop of over six feet, is 
		reached.  Below the falls the gradient picks up and several
		class III to III+ rapids are encountered.  God's Kitchen (III),
		Red Rock Sluice (IV), Jester (III), Wicked Game (III+), and
		Kings Throne (III+) are some of the more intense rapids.  The 
		toughest of these is Red Rock Sluice.  This one got it's name
		from the red marks made by David Thrasher's open canoe
		during the first descent of the creek.  Scout and/or portage it
		on the left.  Take time to enjoy this steep, exciting stretch 
		because the last six miles down to the Hwy. 74 bridge are as 
		flat as a pancake.  This character building paddle is the 
		price of admission for the great whitewater above.  DO NOT
		be tempted to shorten the run by taking out above Hwy. 74.
		The land is all private, and the landowners have threatened
		to tow any vehicles parked near the creek!  All boaters should
		have solid intermediate whitewater skills and advanced flat
		water skills for this run.  Seriously, be confident on fast
		class III-IV water or don't mess with this part of the Kings. 
		Thanks to Shelby Johnson for information on this run. 

See the Photo Gallery for photos.

Return to Index