Rush to Shipps Landing. July 2019.

Recreational and touring boaters
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Joined: Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:43 am
Name: Mike Hodge

Rush to Shipps Landing. July 2019.

Post by Rangi » Sat Aug 03, 2019 1:40 pm

Just got back from an awesome tour, Rush to Shipps Landing on the lower Buffalo River. We were going to launch at Buffalo Point, but launched at Rush instead. Car access is a little easier at Rush.

Day One paddled to Fish Trap Creek and camped the night only 7.0 miles on the first day. Cabin Creek banks were washed out and very steep from the floods. Paddling was easy, but a few head winds in the valley and a little thin water in the shoals. Did not have to get out at all. I was going to paddle this trip solo, but a good friend of mine from Snowball decided to come along at the last moment. Bill is a local and a keen historian on the area. I was blessed to have his company.

Day Two was an easy day and we expected some rain in the afternoon so we set up camp 1/2 a mile East of Big Creek, opposite Kings Bluff. It was a good elevated campsite overlooking the river. Only 4.0 miles paddled with no issues and reasonable water. We fished, swam and explored most of the day. Lots of wild pig sign around the confluence of Big Creek. The usual wild life, deer, raccoon and blue heron on the banks, with alligator gar, sunfish, blue gill and rock bass in the pools. We fished with small rooster tails and spinning crank baits. Caught a few but nothing really big enough to eat.

Day Three we paddled to Stewart Creek after missing our stopping point at Cow Creek. The flood waters had changed the river a little and we had issues with a bad strainer at Cow Creek, which we should have portaged around. We decided to paddle the extra couple of miles and stop at the next creek. There is an excellent camping spot elevated from the river on the right west of Stewart Creek. It looked like some local hunters had trashed the site, so we took some time cleaning it up. We paddled 10.3 miles in around 7 hours.

Day Four was fairly easy with some elevation change and a few shoals, but careful navigation saved any walking. Lots more deer, bald eagles, otters and a few turkey vultures. The White River was running fairly quick, Bill caught a few trout and I enjoyed the lazy float to Shipps Ferry Landing. We paddled 8.0 miles in around 4 hours. A stop at Big Flat on the way home for a cold beer and dropped Bill off in Marshall to pick up his vehicle. It was an awesome trip and the weather was perfect, around the 90’s in the day and down in the 60’s at night.

I recommend taking 4 days and doing some exploring/fishing. We had no cell phone service until the confluence of the White River. Pick up your trash after you and leave nothing behind but your foot prints.

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Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2005 10:39 am
Name: Cowper C
Location: Conway, AR

Re: Rush to Shipps Landing. July 2019.

Post by Cowper » Thu Aug 22, 2019 6:35 pm

I've been hanging out more on the ACC Facebook page, so I'm just now seeing this.

But thanks for a good trip report! I just visited the last 7 miles of this run earlier this week by going upstream from Buffalo City. You're right about the potential for strainers on this section! While not likely to be a problem with good water levels, at lower levels the water does funnel into the banks, undercut them, and create a real potential for strainers that you might just need to drag around. I think this catches some folks off-guard because all the conventional wisdom says the lower river is "easy". Which it is, but that doesn't mean your canoe can magically drift through a down tree.
Trash: Get a little every time you go!

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