Lovill Creek
Mount Airy, North Carolina
Lovill Creek is an estuary of the Ararat River that runs from Lovill Creek Reservoir in Cana, Virginia to nearby Mount Airy, NC.    A walking trail and greenway follow the creek as it makes it way through town.  It's normally a tiny flood controlled creek, but maybe 3 or 4 times a year it really cranks up.  There are three high water play spots that I am aware of.  The first is a ledge just above the Pine Street bridge.   The second is a wave just downstream that forms below a rock next to the movie theater.  The third is a river wide surf wave that sits much farther downstream, below HWY 52 behind Big Lots.   

May 1, 2016.  A little park-and-play action at the commuter lot wave next to the soon-to-be open new section of greenway. The wave is smooth and easy to ride, but is formed by a smooth, shallow granite shelf, so there is no depth for enders and rolling is scratchy.  Nice ender spots just downstream though. 

February 3, 2016
A day of heavy rain brought the Ararat and Lovills way up.  The Ararat was out of its banks in may places, but Lovills was perfect for a little park-n-play. 

March 25, 2012
I had Amy and the boys drop me off at Lebanon Street, then paddled down to the Pine Street bridge for a little park and play.  The level was high and playable, but had dropped at least a foot and a half before I got on.

March 06, 2011

Playboating with pogies, got to love it.  It took me five years to catch Lovill Creek  cranking at this level again.  I ran out late in the afternoon after the water had dropped just enough for the features at the Pine Street bridge to appear.  It was a little chilly, but fun.  My buddy Jeff dropped by to set safety and snapped some pics while he was there, which I was cool.  It is such a convenient little play spot, too bad it takes so much rain to bring it up. 

June 26th, 2006. 

With my nephew manning the camera under the bridge, I surfed the Pine Street play-spot as rain continued to feed the already flash flooding Lovill Creek.  I dropped down to the Cineplex once and surfed it briefly before the hydraulic had its way with me.  It was a super fun park-n-play evening with enough volume to give me a few butterflies and get my adrenaline pumping.    A big thanks goes to my nephew Jesse for keeping an eye on me.

 October 7, 2005. After a two month drought, it finally rained.  And rained.  And rained.  The water was rising, but wouldn't get really big until Saturday and Sunday following heavier thunderstorms. I wouldn't be available on those days though, so we had to take what we had and run with it.  Nothing hairy, but enough to get the boats wet.  Jeff's BigEZ hadn't made it to a river yet and I hadn't been in the GT since July.   The water on Lovill Creek wasn't high enough to create the Cineplex hydraulic next to Creekside, but the two step drop above the Pine Street bridge looked pretty good.  So it was a strict park and play evening.  Even so, I actually had a lot of fun and love the GT.  It is such a nice feeling, compared to the Element, to be able to drop in backwards or spin around on a dime.  I really look forward to all the fun we are going to have with these boats.  


The Cineplex (2.7MB)

July 7, 2004. We had an enormous amount of rain today, and even a tornado warning, so when Amy came home from work at eight, I took the Element around the corner to Lovill Creek.  Had I a playboat, it would have been a great place to park and play.  With the Dagger Element, I just wanted to run through it a few times.  My Element is the best all-around flat-water/river running rec boat ever, but it is NOT, I repeat NOT, a playboat.  So I put-in at the Independence Blvd bridge and paddled to the walking trail parking lot behind the cinema.  The first time through The Cineplex my boat parked at the bottom of the drop, water came over the bow high enough to go over my shoulders, I wasn't sure the skirt was going to hold, then with a paddle stroke or two she popped right out (that only took about two seconds).  So I swung around and found that if I stayed close enough to the bank I could paddle back up stream.  I took a photo and since some folks were standing around watching, I thought I might as well drop in again.  The second time I didn't get far enough upstream to get completely turned, so I went in at an angle.  The Blackwater is dang near unsinkable though and, after getting set down in the foam for just a second or two, it popped right out again.  My buddy Jeff who had ran the full length of the trail earlier in the week pulled up and got me to run it one last time so that he could film it.  The Blackwater shot straight through with no hesitation at all during that last run.  So it was a fun thirty minutes and something that I had wanted to do for a while.  You can watch me fly right through The Cineplex (2.7MB) if you want, it's dark and grainy, but you'll get to listen to 12 seconds of The Killer Barbie's Down The Street.