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Access to Yellow River for kayaks, canoes increasing
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Access to the Yellow River continues to expand, and another kayak and canoe put-in spot could be added near the newly rebuilt Mt. Tabor Road bridge.

Chairman Keith Ellis told the Newton County Board of Commissioners recently that he hopes it will agree to create a kayak and canoe launch site near the bridge.

While the contractors — Atlanta-based McCarthy Improvement Co. — were rebuilding the bridge, they created a construction road leading down to the Yellow River’s shore to aid in rebuilding efforts.

Ellis said his hope is to have the public works department add a parking area by the road using recycled asphalt.
Members of Yellow River Water Trail, a local nonprofit dedicated to keeping the Yellow River clean and promoting its recreational use, will make a presentation to the board at the Dec. 3 meeting at 7 p.m. at the Historic Courthouse.

Tonya Bechtler, one of the nonprofit’s members, previously spoke before the Covington City Council and has been making the rounds of local governments, asking officials to sign resolutions supporting the nonprofit’s efforts. The Water Trail group’s goal is to create a 47.5-mile, designated water trail from Gwinnett County to Jackson Lake, where the Yellow River ends. The goals are to protect a natural resource, increase recreational activities locally and increase tourism spending in the county.

Access points are popping up all along the river.

The Newton County Water & Sewerage Authority recently added one near a pump station off the Access Road near Riverside Estates Mobile Home Park and the bridge that crosses the Yellow River. Bechtler previously said the authority is looking to add another access point off Stephenson Road, which is off Flat Shoals Road.

The Boy Scouts of America recently cleaned up a portion of the river near Bert Adams Scout Reservation off Ga. Highway 36. The Boy Scouts will put in a canoe launch on that property, and the organization has voted to adopt the portion of the river from Porterdale to Jackson Lake to keep it clean, Bechtler said previously.

Finally, an access point will be added at the Georgia International Horse Park in Conyers in the future.