Information on Broadwater Hollow

Broadwater Hollow

     Rating: IV-V
        TDCR: ????
        Location: Newton Co.; Take Hwy. 43 north from Compton about 1/2
                mile and take the dirt road on your right that's across
                from the fire station building.  Head downhill for 2
                miles on the dirt road until you reach a small creek
                crossing over a rock slab.  If there's a lot of water
                covering the slab and it's moving really fast,
                you're good to go!  Paddle down to Cecil Cr. about
                1/4 mile down and then carry back up on the left side
                of Broadwater on the hiking trail that leads back to 
                the put-in.  The hike takes about 20-30 minutes dragging
                a kayak.
        Topo Quad(s): Ponca
        Gradient: 400 fpm
        Length: 0.25 mi
        Season: FLOOD
        Gauge: Only runnable immediately after very heavy rainfall.
                Look for 2+ inches in a couple of hours on the Compton
                rain gauge at the Buffalo National River site and drive
        Hazards: undercuts, downed trees, and one spine crushing drop
        Description: First run in the epic Earth Day Flood on April 24, 2004
                by Fish, Otter, Zach Williams, Sean Ruggles, Amanda
                Boster, and Trey Marley, this is the premier Park-N-Creek 
                run of the Ozarks.  The access is simple and no shuttle is 
                needed.  Just jump in your boat and hang on - though scouting
                down the creek on the left trail is a good idea for first
                timers.  The run starts with long slide that finishes with
                a seven foot spout that was first run by Sean Ruggles 
                backwards after a tightly spaced group launch turned 
                into an ugly traffic jam halfway down the slide.  This author
                can attest to the rather surprised look in Sean's eyes
                as he disappeared into the froth!  The drop's named
                "Clusterf**k" - watch out for the eddy on the left and if 
                there's much water at all expect to get backendered.  If you 
                had fun, the carry back up to run it again is not hard at all.
                The next drop is one of the more visually impressive drops 
                in the Ozarks.  Nicknamed "Honcho", this twisting falls 
                lands on a slab of limestone, making varying degrees of 
                spinal abuse possible if not likely.  Honcho is a solid
                class V drop, probably V+ at high water levels.  It's easy 
                to portage on the left, and unless you're feeling invincible
                that's probably the best route to the bottom.  Next is another
                long slide at high speed and then a jumble of rocks that
                makes for a nice class III-IV drop.  A couple of eddies lead
                over a class III+ entrance rapid and a tiny eddy above the
                lip of "Rock Slide".  This 10-foot plunge over a house-
                sized boulder looks more intimidating from the entrance than
                it is, but there's relatively little room for error since
                it immeditately feeds into some rocks and then into the 
                next series of drops.  The next 100 yards of class IV-V
                water is the "Broadwater Boogie".  A good scout and some 
                strategic bank support can prevent minor mishaps from 
                turning epic here.  Depending on water level, you'll 
                either be trying to speed up to boof or slow down to not get 
                smashed into the rocks.  There probably isn't a completely 
                clean line down the whole thing, and well laid plans tend
                to unravel before the bottom eddy is reached.  The next
                and final drop, "Big Ugly", is only runnable at very high 
                water levels over the double drop in the center of the 
                creek.  Water flows through cracks in the huge rock making 
                any line potentially hazardous.  Scout from the rocks 
                in the center, and if it doesn't look pleasant, just carry 
                up the left bank to the trail.  Cecil Creek lies at the 
                bottom of Big Ugly - make sure you take out there or it
                will be a very long walk back to the car!  If you get on
                the creek at high levels and run it quickly, you can go
                for round #2 if you have enough energy left, but expect
                a much bonier run unless it's pouring rain.  Not running 
                the first drop again would be a shame though - it boats
                well even with very low flow.  Or, if you have a lot of 
                time, head over for a chaser on Osage Cr., which should 
                have plenty of water left!  Broadwater is extremely steep
                and boaters should definitely be experienced at class V
                steep creekin' before launching a boat!

See the Photo Gallery for photos.

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