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Local jet skiers to travel 600 miles across TN river

11:46 PM, Jul 20, 2013   |    comments
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(WBIR - Knoxville) Sunday, a group of jet skiers will begin their journey to travel across almost the entire length of the Tennessee River.

The group will leave Knoxville, travel through Alabama and Mississippi before reaching their final destination 600 river miles away in Buchannon, Tennessee.

Knoxville resident Dennis Beckley has taken part in the Tennessee River 600 for 17 years.

"We're just a group of people, enthusiasts who love getting out and seeing the scenery on the water," he said.

The group does the trek for charitible purposes. It believes it will have raised more than $200,000 for the Children's Miracle Network and TWRA after it finishes its latest trip.

More than 90 riders are expected to participate.

"We have about 12, 13 states represented," Beckley said.

But, this year, the Tennessee River also brings it with some dangers thanks to the area's recent wet weather. First, the water on the river is higher than it usually is.

"The current is a lot swifter too, the current's running probably 3 to 5 miles per hour," Beckley said.

He said the storms have also put a lot more debris into the water, so riders have to be more cautious for that too.

Beckley said they hope to arrive at Paris Landing State Marina in West Tennessee by next Saturday.

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