Even though the two rivers are so close to each other, the experience of floating them is very different. The Jacks Fork is swift and narrow at times and has several sharp turns. There are a few spots where, if you’re not careful, you could easily tip over. On the other hand, the Current is much wider with a slower moving current. The Current is also frequented by motorized boats, so it’s best to float above Big Spring in order to avoid congestion (and noise).
There are a plethora of floating options in the Ozarks National Scenic Riverways, so you can tailor your trip to your preferred length and difficulty. On the Jacks Fork, we like the 15-mile stretch from Alley Spring to Two Rivers. As for the Current, check out the 11-mile float from Williams Landing to Two Rivers. There are also a variety of outfitters, but we’re partial to the folks at Windy’s Canoe Rental. Not only are they some of the nicest people you’ll ever meet, but the owners Mike and Holly Smith are like living encyclopedias of local knowledge, especially Holly, who is a history buff. She can tell just about anything you’d want to know about the area. When we visited, they even arranged for us to find the infamous wild horses of Shannon County, something that had been on our Ozarks bucket list for years. However, our favorite thing about Windy’s is that they’ll pick you up and drop you off wherever you’re staying. How can you beat service like that?