- Levisa Fork
Levisa Fork, KY
Blue Water Trail (Jubilee Christian Church Ramp to Thompson Road Ramp)
The people of the city of Pikeville and Pike County can move rivers and cut through mountains if it improves the quality of their lives. The Levisa Fork of Big Sandy River once cut a horseshoe-shaped loop around the toe of Peach Orchard Mountain. The city of Pikeville rose up inside this loop in Peach Orchard Bottom, but the nearly 90-degree turn of the river created a bottleneck that resulted in regular flooding.
City leaders devised a plan using the resources of over 20 federal, state and local agencies to move the Levisa Fork by cutting through Peach Orchard Mountain and rerouting the river's flow away from downtown. After 14 years and over 18 million cubic yards of material removed, the Pikeville Cut-Through is one of the largest civil engineering projects in United States history. Only the Panama Canal moved more material for a civil engineering project in the western hemisphere.
Tourism officials with the city of Pikeville are now showing the same visionary leadership by creating the Hatfield-McCoy River Trail, an 8.5 mile stretch of the Levisa Fork with the some of the best paddling access and infrastructure in the state of Kentucky.
The Levisa Fork holds gentle riffles and flowing shoals, perfect floating conditions for families and beginners. This section is ideal for canoes, kayaks and small one-man pontoon boats. Since the Levisa Fork receives the waters of Russell Fork along with releases from Fishtrap Lake Dam upstream, the river has great flow all summer long. (KYFWR)