Fort Payne, Ala. – After being closed for over 12 weeks, Canyon Mouth Park is set to re-open. Canyon Mouth Park is a popular picnicking, swimming, and kayaking location at the southern end of the park, where the Little River exits Little River Canyon and goes from whitewater rapids to a calm, serene river before exiting the park.
Canyon Mouth Park was initially closed on April 3, 2020, in line with Alabama Department of Public Health guidance on COVID-19 precautions. On April 12, 2020, a storm with heavy rainfall brought the Little River to 34,300 cubic feet per second, causing massive amounts of damage to Canyon Mouth Park. The floodwaters, which had water flowing over the entirety of Canyon Mouth Park, washed picnic tables, garbage and recycling bins, and split -rail fencing from their foundations, some of which were mostly buried in sand deposits alongside and in the river. Mulch from around the new playground equipment was carried hundreds of feet away, and Canyon Mouth Trail received heavy erosion damage – portions of the trail were under 6-plus feet of water. The floodwaters also broke some iron charcoal grills off at their cemented base and destroyed one soccer goal, which was wrapped around a tree down river.
National Park Service staff, alongside Youth Conservation Corps workers who began working at Little River Canyon National Preserve on Tuesday, June 16, have been working hard to clean up and repair Canyon Mouth Park.
Canyon Mouth Park is the only fee area at Little River Canyon National Preserve. $15 Daily Passes and $35 Annual Passes are available through the fee machine at the entrance (cash only). The America the Beautiful Passes are valid for entrance into Canyon Mouth Park via the fee machine as well.