A 5.5 mile, Class 1, paddle on the Dan River from the NC 135 Mayo River State Park Access in Mayodan to the new Jacob Creek Batteau Landing is the scheduled site of the Dan River Basin Association’s (DRBA’s) First Saturday Outing (FSO) on August 5. Participants will meet at 9 a.m. at the Jacobs Creek Batteau Park & Landing to coordinate the take-out.
This paddle is suitable for those with some paddling experience. Along the route, participants will float through some of the best examples of intact batteau structures. Batteaux were 50-60 feet long flat bottom boats that could carry up to five tons of commercial goods like corn, cotton, and tobacco up and down the river. They frequently were guided by enslaved persons and later by freed Blacks until railroads became the common form of transport in the 1880’s.
This is the first time DRBA will use the NC 135 Access and the Jacobs Creek Batteau Landing for a paddle. After about 1.25 miles the Mayo joins the Dan River. About ¼ mile past the US 220 Bridge starts the 800-foot Slink Shoals rapid. For the batteau to navigate this more easily, crib wing dams were built on each side of the river to make a deeper channel down the middle of the waterway. These wooden and rock structures were built in the 1820’s and are still intact. Further downstream is the Lone Island Ford which was used by General Greene after the Battle of Guilford Courthouse. This Ford was in use from circa 1769-1868 when the Settle’s covered bridge was completed.
Jacobs Creek Batteau Landing is close to where Alexander Martin built his home Danbury. Alexander Martin was the 4th and 7th NC Governor. The batteau landing is listed on the National Register of Historic places as being part of the Dan River Navigational System.
Participants must supply their own boat, paddles, life jackets, water and lunch. Please wear water-shedding artificial fabric or wool (not cotton, and certainly not blue jeans); and provide a back-up change of clothing. All participants will be required to sign a waiver.
DRBA’s First Saturday Outings are free and open to the public. For more information, contact Will Truslow, 336-547-1903, email@example.com.
NOTE: If for any reason the event needs to be cancelled, visit www.danriver.org by Friday, August 4 to determine whether the outing will be held.
Outings and meetings of the Dan River Basin Association are open to the public without charge.