After a brief but furious bout of rain, Big Sugar Creek has swollen enough to venture slightly further up the basin than I’ve ever floated before.

The put-in, a roadside access where KK Hwy crosses over the creek just north of Pea Ridge, AR, leaves something to be desired. But it’s not the worst access I’ve ever used. Due to its steep nature, it’s certainly better used to put in rather than take out!

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Of my nearly 7 mile float, 5-1/2 miles of it were completely new territory. And what beautiful territory it was! I was especially struck by the number of springs and caves in the first several miles. It also seemed that I was moving faster than expected, as the gradient here must start to pick up steam.

Despite being in uncharted waters, challenges were few. Save for a couple low water bridges, and the portaging they necessitated, it was smooth sailing all day.