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Day 2-PG2015How did you celebrate Father’s Day? For Paddle Georgia participants, it was with a 17 mile float, making today our longest day. The many sweepers and strainers slowed the day down but brought us paddlers together on this long stretch of river. It’s easy to spread out along the water but the jams, after causing short frustration, spawned a new sense of comradery. Paddlers shared sunscreen and jokes referring to the hold up as “worse than Atlanta traffic”. With lots of strainers, miles, and boat traffic, a popular rope swing was a welcomed distraction from this hard paddle. Day 2-PG2015Paddlers challenged each other to see who could jump farthest or who could do the best back flip. We also kept cool with frequent and welcome water gun wars. There is nothing like a little rivalry to boast morale.

This hard paddle took time to tackle, causing the buses to pull us straight into an evening full of great food and riveting talks. Day 2-PG2015
Megan Desrosier, the Executive Director for 100 Miles, presented about Georgia coastal conservation and activism. Tim Echols from the Georgia Public Service Commission spoke on the rising electric car usage in Georgia.

Finally, it was time to retire after a long day. Paddlers went to back to a village of temporary homes, commonly known as Tent City. a unique site created by paddlers. Tents are huddled in the shade, leaving the football field wide open and the goal post to be used as a makeshift clothesline. A strong sense of community is created here, as people sit outside tents in circles sharing opinions and telling stories. Neighbors with portable fans are the most popular. When one woman was attacked by a hill of ants, her neighbors in Tent City came to the rescue with unique home remedies to fix the problem – one of the many instances of generosity and helpfulness exhibited in our temporary home. Other campers have chosen to stay inside the cool gym, turning it into a mattress lined “refugee camp”. Day 2-PG2015After a hard day of paddling, both Tent City and the cool gym are great places to conclude our successful Father’s Day on the Ogeechee River.

Amelia Lord and Jamie Rogers, Paddle Georgia Enthusiasts

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A beautiful mist shrouded the river as participants first set paddle on the Chattahoochee at Settles BridgeP1030471. The water was crystal clear and the river bottom lined with colorful gravel and gnarled drift wood.  So refreshing and majestic….

The STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, & Mathematics) Youth group, most of whom had never paddled before, were a bit hesitant to set out at first, but as soon as they hit the river they paddled their canoes as if dancing onP1030529 the water- smiling from ear to ear. Be sure to check out the Paddle Georgia Youth Blogspot blog throughout the week.P1030572

Ichthyologist Camm Swift was quick to find a Sucker Fish, that he explained was most likely freshly skewered by a Great Blue Heron and accidentally dropped back into the river.

And speaking of fresh fish, kayak fishing in Georgia has grP1030796own exponentially in popularity in recent years,  and Paddle Georgia paddlers are no exception.

Rainbow and Brown Trout are two of the most popular  fish caught by sport fisherman in Metro Atlanta as a result of the rP1030825elease of water from the bottom of  Buford Dam, which has changed the historic warm waters of the river to a chilly 48 degrees and in turn the species of fish that are able to live here. Participants learned more about this at Buford Trout Hatcherythe Buford Trout Hatchery today, where millions of trout are stocked into the Chattahoochee and other Georgia rivers each year.P1030739

But the frigid water didn’t stop kids and adults alike from whipping out their super-soakers and squirt guns and spraying each other down mercilessly with glee- Yippee!

sWhat an amazing first day on the Chattahoochee river…P1030854

The evening was also filled with excitement as Georgia River Network Development Director, Davin Welter announced that 39 canoe-A-thoners raised a stunning $44,000 this year, the most we have ever raised yet!  WOW!!!

Terry Pate took the gold again this year, raising $6,205; followed by John Branch, Tom Beman and James Watson with assistance from his dad Tim.P1030887

We are so very thankful for everyone’s hard work, support and success in taking on this challenge with such vigor and enthusiasm!

So excited about tomorrow’s journey!

Keep on rollin’ down the river ~

Gwyneth Moody

 

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We have officially reached the half-way point of Paddle Georgia 2013 with 3 DSC_6363days of awesome paddling behind us and 3 more ahead. Everyone really enjoyed their stay at Chehaw with their friendly staff, beautiful grounds and comfortable facilities and we were all sad to leave, but excited about the new digs in Camilla.

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Although everyone seemed to cringe at the mention of a 21 mile paddle – the current was the fastest we’ve had yet and we scooted swiftly along.P1000943

P1000998Playful paddlers, as always we encountered hoola hooping in the morning and bubbles in the afternoon.P1010050

Red Tailed Hawks, Belted P1000653Kingfisher, Bob Whites, Pileated woodpeckers, and Green Heron could be heard and occasionally seen through the canopy that shrouded the winding river.P1010062

The limestone caves along this stretch were beautiful and mysterious with their tight crevices and dangling ferns that formed curtains on the rock walls surrounding the cave mouth.

Twisted, gnarly roots of Sycamore and Cypress trees reached out like fingers and hands holding back the river bank, their knees jutting up out of the water resembling mud castles at the beach.P1000972

And even with the usual swimming, lounging, and jumping from rope swings paddlers completed the trip in record time, and were shuttled to our new home of Mitchell County High School.

And what a better way to end the day than with an awesome street party in Camilla!P1010115 It was great to see everyone boogying down and enjoying themselves so immensely.

Looking forward to another day in South Georgia paradise tomorrow!

Keep on rollin’ down the river,

Gwyneth Moody

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Go Coastal with Altamaha Riverkeeper for a Paddle on Cathead Creek in Darien! May 11th…

dannyPaddle through Pierce Butler’s old abandoned rice fields and a tidal forest – teaming with wildlife. You will encounter old growth cypress, tupelo, and wildflowers.

Guide extraordinaire, Danny Grissette, with Altamaha Coastal Tours will lead the paddle on Saturday, May 11.

The adventure begins at 10 am at Skipper’s Fish Camp Restaurant parking lot – just off Hwy 17.  Danny will give a short kayaking lesson before the leisurely 2 ½ hour paddle.

The trip, suitable for beginners and children, is offered at a special price of $35 per person. Space is limited. Call Constance at (912) 437-8164 asap or email: cor@altamahariverkeeper.org to reserve your space, a tandem or single kayak, canoe, or bring your own.

After the paddle, (approximately 1:00-1:30), Skipper’s has reserved the Oyster Bar deck overlooking the river for our lunch (Dutch Treat). We look forward to having you join us; it’s a chance to meet some new friends, trade paddle stories, and find out what ARK is doing to protect our rivers.

Help Support Altamaha Riverkeeper’s work with a donation today.  Please donate at http://www.altamahariverkeeper.org

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WEEKEND FOR RIVERS 2013
“The Value of Water”
Saturday-Sunday, April 6-7, 2013
Chattahoochee Nature Center, Roswell, Georgia

Weekend for Rivers 2013, Georgia River Network’s Annual Conference and River Celebration, is fast approaching, and you can register now!

Don’t miss an entire weekend of celebrating Georgia’s unique, beautiful rivers through storytelling, partying and paddling for the low price of $50 (check out the special rates for kids, students and new-comers on the Eventbrite registration page).

And even if you can’t make it to the whole weekend, click HERE to buy tickets to the party on Saturday night!

WFR Image girlHIGHLIGHTS!
•    Over 30 presenters with offerings ranging from policy updates to poetry, music to meditation. Click here to view the compete agenda.
•    A great party with drinks from Sweetwater Brewery and Barefoot Wines, music by our DJ, a silent auction, our famous Paddle Georgia Port-a-Potty Auction, and fun!  River celebration awards will be presented to Jerry McCollum, Keith Parsons, Richard Milligan, and South River Watershed Association.
•    Camping at the Chattahoochee Nature Center!
•    A Mini Paddle Georgia! Paddle with us from Johnson Ferry to Paces Mill (~6.5 miles) on the beautiful Chattahoochee! Bring your own boat, rent a boat from Broad River Outpost (contact Michael at 706.795.3242 or gabroadriver@gmail.com rental boats will be brought to put-in and picked up the end) or paddle in a raft with a National Park Service ranger from Powers Ferry to Paces Mill (~3 miles). For more information on the raft trip, call or email Jesslyn: 706.549.4508, jesslyn@garivers.org.

Click HERE to find out more about Weekend for Rivers, or if you have questions, email Jesslyn Shields at jesslyn@garivers.org.

We can’t wait to spend the Weekend with you!

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 Flint Riverkeeper1

TASTE the FLINT
-River Trip Series-
First paddle of 2013 kicks off March 23rd!

Explore and understand the natural diversity of the Flint River

Join us for 2013’s first Taste the Flint River Trip

Saturday, March 23rd

Upper Flint, near Thomaston

8:00am: Meet at State Route 74 bridge

6+ hour trip to Sprewell Bluff Recreation Area

Moderate-Experience Paddling Skills Required for this trip

*Registrants will be sent additional details and directions

-SPACE IS LIMITED-

Register by emailing jayme@flintriverkeeper.org

OR call 229.435.2241, 229.220.9796

  • FRk members who bring their own canoe $15 each
  • FRk members who need to borrow canoe $25 each
  • Non-members who bring their own canoe $35 each
  • Non-members who need to borrow canoe $45 each
  • FREE trip & boat usage for up to three volunteers who will help load boats and gear at the conclusion of the trip

(non member cost includes one-year of FRk membership)
*pricing includes kayaks, too

More TASTE the FLINT River Trips are planned for the rest of the year, throughout the Flint watershed:

 

Saturday, April 20th: Middle Flint, near Montezuma

 

Saturday in May, TBA: Upson-Thomaston Chamber of Commerce

3rd Annual Poker Float

 

Saturday, June 15th- Friday, June 21st: Paddle Georgia on Lower Flint

*this event is sold-out, but you can be included on the wait list

and find other details here

*Although sold-out, Paddle Georgia coordinators are seeking solutions to accommodate those on the wait list

 

Saturday in July, TBA: Baker-Mitchell Sheriff’s Home poker Float

 

Saturday, October 5th: Lower Flint, near Albany

 

-all scheduled trips are subject to change due to weather and flow conditions-

We hope to see you on the river!

BECOME A FRk MEMBER TO PROTECT YOUR FLINT RIVER!

The mission of the Flint Riverkeeper® (FRk) is to restore and preserve the habitat, water quality, and flow of the Flint River for the benefit of current and future generations and dependent wildlife. Flint Riverkeeper is a fully licensed member of the Waterkeeper Alliance; a participating member of the Georgia Water Coalition; and a member-group of EarthShare of Georgia.

Copyright© 2009 Flint Riverkeeper. All rights reserved
Flint Riverkeeper | P.O. Box 468, Albany Ga. 31702 | (229) 435-2241

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Did you know Georgia has 13 established Water Trails? Do you know where they are? You can read all about them and find the one nearest you at our

Water Trails website!

Imagehttp://gawatertrails.org

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February
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Georgia Water Trails News

Clearinghouse Corner
Trails in the News
Upcoming Events
Useful Resources
Flotsam and Jetsam
How Can Others Sign Up for This List


Clearinghouse Corner
gwtcsmall.jpg Greetings fellow river rats!
We are so excited to have all of this wonderful rain and hope that it recharges the ground water enough to keep Georgia rivers up for paddling this year! Fingers crossed…

If you haven’t already signed up for our 2013 Georgia River Challenge – then what are you waiting for?  It’s a great opportunity to share the experience of paddling with folks who would otherwise not go on their own!   Also make sure that the 4 Seasons Hidden Gems Paddling trips are on your calendar. This will be an awesome opportunity to explore a hidden gem in 4 different watersheds which you’ve more than likey never seen before!

As always, please don’t hesitate to give me a call or come by for a visit if you have any questions, concerns, need resources, or just want to chat about rivers.

Keep on rollin’ on the river,

Gwyneth Moody


Trail Developments and Trails in the News! 

1. Dub Denman Canoe Trail Soon to be Officially on the Map

TallapoosariverThe 23.8 mile Dub Denman Canoe Trail located on the Tallapoosa River is soon to be officially on the map after years of planning. Five sites along the Tallapoosa River are being considered for trail access, including two on county property and three on private property. Two of the three access point require stream buffer variances which are awaiting approval. Tallapoosa Planning Coordinator, Patrick Clarey, explained that the city has been moving forward with two of the original five proposed kayak and canoe launch sites with the help of a $51,150 Georgia Department of Natural Resources grant awarded to the county. The launch sites will include concrete staircases and wooden canoe launches, where needed, as well as gravel parking lots, trash receptacles and signage.

Read more about the Dub Denman Canoe Trail in the Times-Georgian and on our Water Trails website. If you have any questions contact Patrick Clarey at tigerroooo@aol.com 770-574-3108

2. Visit the Ocmulgee Heritage Trail and Sit with Otis Redding!
otis reddingLegendary musician Otis Redding is memorialized in a life size statue at beautiful Gateway Park, trailhead of the Ocmulgee River Heritage Trail.
Sit with him on the dock, hum your favorite Otis tune, picnic on the grassy hillside overlooking the river or drop a line for the catch of the day.Check out the Macon website for more information about the Ocmulgee Heritage trail as well as on our Water Trails Website.

3. Have You Signed Up for Our 2013 Georgia River Challenge? What are You Waiting for? ~ Take 13 People Paddling in 2013 ~

Share the joy of paddling Georgia’s rivers with friends and family who otherwise would not go on their own!

coastal bluewayGeorgia River Network is encouraging river lovers to celebrate Georgia’s rivers – from wild places to urban waterways – by taking 13 people, who might not otherwise go on their own, paddling in 2013.

The goal of this year’s ‘Take 13 People Paddling in 2013’ challenge is to promote Georgia’s growing water trail movement and send more people to the Georgia Water Trails Website to identify water trails to paddle, locate outfitters, find organized paddling trips or plan their own trip with friends and family who have little to no paddling experience.

To join the list of paddlers participating, just send an email to gwyneth@garivers.org with your name and address to sign up.


Upcoming Events

Organized Paddling Trips
There are lots of upcoming paddling trips all over Georgia. To learn more about these events see our calendar. To have your water trail events added to the calendar, just send the details with a note to info@garivers.org.

1. Have you Gotten Wild and Scenic yet? Well Get Ready for March 3!

Get your tickets NOW for our 6th Annual Wild & Scenic Film Festival. They are selling FAST- in fact, we’ve already sold nearly all of our available tickets, so get your ASAP. The festival takes place at Landmark Midtown Art Cinema in Midtown Atlanta. Attendees will enjoy complimentary SweetWater beer (for patrons 21-plus with a valid ID). PURCHASE TICKETS HERE.

Get inspired by the following film trailers and well see y’all there!

Carbon for Water, about a practical solution in providing clean water in Kenya’s Western Province; Julio Solis: A MoveShake Story, about a dedicated sea turtle preservationist in Mexico; and How the Kids Saved the Parks, about a grassroots effort to keep all of California’s state parks open.

2. Weekend For Rivers Registration NOW OPEN- Learn about The Value of Water!

WFR Image girlIn 2013, Weekend for Rivers is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Clean Water Act by focusing on “The Value of Water.”

Weekend for Rivers will take place on April 6-7, 2013 at the Chattahoochee Nature Center in Roswell, Georgia.

Click here to Register and learn more and remember early bird registration ends March 1st!

3. Mark your Calendar for the 4 Seasons Hidden Gems Paddling Events:

2013-Unveiling-Full-pageWebEach paddling trip will include lunch and presentations along the way ranging from natural history and water quality testing to river cleanup training and kayak fishing.

The location of these hidden gems within the following watersheds will be unveiled soon! Stay tuned for more detail.

*Chattahoochee Watershed Hidden Gem PaddleMay 18 (GRN, West Atlanta Watershed Alliance, Keeping it Wild & Chattahoochee Riverkeeper)

*Etowah River Hidden Gem Paddle and Book LaunchAug 4 (GRN, Coosa River Basin Initiative, Upper Etowah River Alliance and Cherokee Historical Society)*Central Savannah Watershed Hidden Gem PaddleSept 7 (GRN, Georgia Kayak Fishing-Paddle4Tomorrow & Savannah Riverkeeper)*Altamaha River Watershed Hidden Gem PaddleNov 16 (GRN, Off Grid Expeditions, Rivers Alive & Altamaha Riverkeeper)

4. Etowah River Guide Book- Available May, 2013

Announcing the Georgia River Network Guidebooks series!

The Etowah River User’s Guide is the first in a series of books to be published by Georgia River Network and the UGA Press in May 2013.

Click here to learn more.


Useful Resources

1. Who Wants an Interactive Water Trail Map for their Water Trail?
The altamaha mapGeorgia Environmental Protection Division Outreach Unit and Georgia River Network are working in partnership to develop web-based interactive maps for Georgia‘s water trails. Our goal is to create an interactive map for all water trails throughout the State.Water trails that satisfy the GRN Clearinghouse Criteria will be included on the map as established water trails.  We will have separate map layers for those water trails that are still in the conceptual and developing stages.

If you represent a Water Trail that has been established or is in the developing stage please email gwyneth@garivers.org so we can collaborate on data collection and verification.

2.  Find out How to have a National Water Trail Designated in your Community!

nwtsYou can now experience the new National Water Trails System through an interactive website that connects users to rivers and waterways through stories and tools.

Water trail managers can apply for designation through an easy online application, and visitors can learn more about designated trails through a photo gallery, dynamic stories, and videos. An interactive map and new search functions make it easy for users to find national water trails throughout the country. Visit the new site at www.nps.gov/watertrails.

3.  You May Know ‘Trails don’t just happen’ but Public Users May Not-Use Signs!

signbirdThe message that “trails don’t just happen” is vital in nurturing public support for the funding sources behind trails. The source of funds for land acquisition as well as facilities is also important. Some programs are specific to a locality, such as sales tax support. Other projects are funded by state sources, such as lotteries. Many trails are partly funded by grants from federal funds, such as the Recreational Trails Program and the Land & Water Conservation Fund.

Check out our Water Trail Website for Signage ideas and see a gallery of photos of funding signs from the National Trails Training Partnership.


Flotsam and Jetsam

1. Get Fit on a Stand-Up Paddle Board – Whether You are Looking for a Calm Relaxing Experience or a Hard-core Workout!

paddle board 4Stand-up paddling exercise has been described as everything from great, fun and exciting to calming and intense. Stand-up paddle boarding is an ancient form of surfing, yet it is most widely enjoyed on relatively flat water.

Most cities are founded on waterways, so most people have access to a stretch of water where they can get out for a “stroll on the water.” Paddle boarding can be very easy and gentle gliding or it can be flat-out sprinting – depending on whether you are looking for a calm relaxing experience or a hard-core workout. Read full article HERE

2. Ever Tried Emptying a Swamped Canoe When You are in Deep Water?

Video Still

Try the “Capistrano Flip”…

Check out this short video and learn new techniques that you can add to your list of groovy paddling skills.

http://www.paddling.net/guidelines/showArticle.html?674

3. Have You Entered a Photo for GRN’s Monthly Photo Showcase and Staff Pick?

January Photo showcaseEach month we will have a different theme and invite you to send us a photo that you think best represents the theme.

We will showcase everyone’s photos on our website and social media and one photo per month will receive the illustrious title of ‘GRN Staff Pick of the Month’ and the chosen photo’s author will receive a surprise token of gratitude. Watch January’s Photo Showcase HERE. Email your photo to gwyneth@garivers.org and Click here to learn more.


How can others can sign up for this water trails list? 
Visit http://garivers.org/make-a-difference/sign-up-for-info.html and fill out the sign up form.

Please send news and developments on your trail, contributions to be included in the newsletter, and any suggestions to gwyneth@garivers.org

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Full-moon_paddle_opt_tcm18-51253Saturday, February 23, 2013

5:30 PM

View a beautiful sunset over Lake Juliette, weather permitting.
Paddle to see Georgia Power’s Plant Scherer all lit up.
Have a snack on an island.

Lake Juliette

Dames Ferry Park, Jackson, GAMeet at Dames Ferry Park, 22 miles south of Jackson, GA on US 23
Or
South on I-75 to exit 185, turn left (East) on Hwy 118 for 10 miles and turn left (North) on US 23, go 1.6 miles to entrance.
$3 parking fee

Moonrise@ 4:42 PM
Sunset @ 6:27 PM

No flashlights, just glow sticks or headlamps.

Contact info: Ralph Bartow

http://www.meetup.com/atlantaareapaddlers/events/103535012/?a=ea1_grp&rv=ea1

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April Ingle, Executive Director of Georgia River Network, takes a moment to show some love to our members! Below is the first of 9 videos we will be posting to express our staff’s love for the various groups that make our work here at GRN possible and that help to ensure clean water throughout the state of Georgia.

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