Canoe Canoe?

Anybody out there ever taken a canow trip down the Harpeth?  I’ve found three providers, I’m wondering if there are advantages to using one over another?  Any river people out there?  My choices are Canoe Music City, Foggy Bottom Canoe, and Tip A Canoe.



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12 responses to “Canoe Canoe?

  1. demcommie


    Might want to consider that last one an outlier;)

  2. Hundreds, literally. We used to live near the Narrows of the Harpeth and canoed there regularly. We had 3 of our own canoes but whenever we decided to do a canoe party we’d use Foggy Bottom. No huge reason, but at the time they were a few bucks cheaper.

    It may have changed but Tip-a-Canoe used to have you park there at their office and you’d wait for their transport back to get your car. Foggy Bottom would let you park at the end point and you’d leave when you were done. We never used Canoe Music City.

  3. BTW, the trip from one side of the Narrows to the other is an interesting one from several perspectives.

    First is the history aspect – read about Montgomery Bell & his cannonball making near there. The tunnel was hand cut by his slaves (who were supposedly given passage back to Liberia after it was finished – but that’s hearsay and may be wrong).

    Second, on the way about halfway through the trip you’ll pass a little creek on the left — that’s Trace Creek. It’s right after a nice curve to the right (like there aren’t many of them – heh – but look at the map of that part of the river – it’s a horseshoe bend and you’re really making that first big change in direction just where this creek is.) and just before a wide spot where the river is really shallow and moderately fast.

    STOP THERE. Go up that creek about a quarter-mile where the curve starts (you can’t canoe up it far at all though) and it’s a wonderful place to picnic right in front of a huge beech tree. The water is amazingly clear and usually full of minnows in various stages of size. Beyond that curve it’s shallow water and you can wade in a nice, peaceful area.

    After you leave Trace Creek and get back on the Harpeth, swing wide to the right or you’ll drag bottom in swift water – less fun than you’d like.

    Third, the next must stop is where a creek enters on the right – near the end of the trip. If you pass it, go back. You’ll see an open field a bit downriver. That’s the other side of the Narrows tunnel. Walk up to the pool – you DO know what poison ivy looks like, right? You’ll need to – the few remaining piles of rock in the water are the remainder of the foundation for Bell’s forges. It is possible to climb up into the opening but with kids it might risk a fall.

    This spot is amazing after a good rain storm. Water pours out of that opening full width into the pool. We’ve seen the pool several times bigger than normal. An ad featuring a kayaker coming out of that tunnel would bring tourists like mad – if it wasn’t for an unfortunately placed pile of rocks right in front of the opening.

    Fourth interesting thing is once you’re done (oh, it’s a state park so you can have a gun but no beer), you’re less than a half mile from where you started. It’s literally on the other side of the hill from you. You could park on one side and walk back to your car after a 2 or 3 hour canoe trip. Of course, you’d be really tired, but …

    The best trip of all to me is one the liverys don’t do, which starts where this trip ends and ends two bridges farther down. On a bluff downriver there are ancient pictographs barely visible of a bird and a circle probably 50′ below the bluff top and a hundred above the river. Since the liveries don’t go there , it’s quiet and peaceful.

  4. demcommie


    I can tell you where to get cold beer if you want to canoe up here!

  5. demcommie


    One other thing. If you see some strange looking kid on a porch playing “Banjo Hero”, it’ll be time to get off the river.

  6. demo, I worked in a summer camp in college and one year after all the kids left we went on a white water trip down that same river. Never did see a kid with a banjo but two guys in a pickup truck hauled us out of the middle of nowhere once the river ran dry.

  7. demcommie


    Yeah, it’s usually been my experience that the “po’ folk” are the ones you can rely on when the shit hits the fan–stereotypes not withstanding. My apologies.

  8. Shit, Demo, I got a pickup truck, and I’m elitist as hell.

  9. demcommie


    I could tell, just by your syntax. My people would say “I got me a pickup truck.”

  10. Well, Demo, “I got” belies my over-education…

  11. Is it air conditioned?

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