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DO IT: Hiking - Georgia Little River Water Trail

Georgia Little River Water Trail -

You do not to be an experience paddler to experience Georgia’s Little River Water Trail on Clarks Hill Lake. The water trail is family friendly, open year-round, and suitable for all ages.

In addition to a water trail, the area is a wildlife sanctuary. Canoers and kayakers may see bald eagles’ nests, river otters, native fish species, and white-tail deer – just to name a few. Exploring this pristine portion of Georgia on the water is an experience like no other.

Paddlers can explore a rich history that runs along Little River that includes Quaker settlements, gold mines and Native American heritage.


Kayaks and paddleboards are available for rent at the Raysville Campground in Thomson, Ga., but as this is one end of the water trail, it is best to bring a kayak or a canoe with you.

Also, the first access point – Highway 80/Wrightsboro Road Bridge – is not a good place to get in the water when the water is low. This site is beautiful, but brush, rocks, and fallen trees will keep you out of the water for a large portion of this section if the area has not seen much rain recently.

23 miles long, this water trail flows through Wilkes, Warren and McDuffie counties and the Clarks Hill Wildlife Management Area, which covers 15,000 acres. Four public access locations create three sections of the river:

  • Storks Bend-GLRWT Section One
    • From Storks Bend Access to Smith Mill Access
    • 7.6 miles
    • Paddle Time – 4 hours
    • Class 1 – Flatwater – Suitable for Beginners

Access Points

  • Highway 80/Wrightsboro Road Bridge in McDuffie County: 33.60836,-82.64851
    • Highway 78: 33.6377, -82.59525
  • Smith Mill-GLRWT Section Two
    • From Smith Mill Access point to Holliday Park Access point
    • 7.4 miles
    • Paddle Time – 4 hours
    • Class 1 – Flatwater – Suitable for Beginners

Access Points

  • Highway 78: 33.6377, -82.59525
    • Holliday Park Campground in Wilkes County: 33.65013, -82.53916
  • Raysville-GLRWT Section Three
    • From Holliday Park Access point to Raysville Campground Access point
    • 5.5 miles
    • Paddle Time – 3 hours
    • Class 1 – Flatwater – Suitable for Beginners

Access Points

  • Holliday Park Campground: 33.65013, -82.53916
    • Raysville Campground in McDuffie County

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