Originally Posted by Ghostrider42
Is there much barge/tow traffic near these marinas?
Generally, the farther upriver you go, the less barge traffic you'll encounter. Especially true above Chattanooga where a stalled lock replacement project has impacted commercial traffic. That said, the TN River is a series of TVA reservoirs and most have generous navigation channels. In the "lake" portion of the reservoirs above the dams there is usually ample room (hundreds of yards or more) outside the channels for vessels with 6-foot drafts to stay away from barges. (TVA draws the water level down in winter in preparation for spring flood control, so the area outside the channels varies by season.) As you move upstream from a dam, the reservoirs tend to become more riverine and can get a bit tighter for a few miles below the next dam, but in many years of boating there I've never had anything approaching an encounter I felt was dangerous.