Forging a Blue Trail (July 3, 2012)
Outdoor enthusiasts celebrate two of Georgia's hidden gems, the South River and Yellow River, on Sept. 8 and 15 with two celebrations dubbed “Unveiling the Hidden Gems of Metro Atlanta."
The celebrations feature a river float for canoeist and kayakers alike; an opportunity to learn about the river’s natural and cultural history, training on how to organize a river clean up, Adopt-a-Stream training, and a live native fish demonstration courtesy of North American Native Fish Association. Beginners and experienced enthusiasts alike are invited to come out.
All activities on the South River will take place at Panola Shoals, beginning at 9 a.m. or during stops along the river during the canoe/kayak float from Panola Shoals to Klondike Road.
“This is our third South River outing this year and it will be the largest because we have partnered with Georgia River Network, Yellow River Preservation and Conservation, and Rivers Alive to put on this fantastic event in support of South River that will linger in the memory of those who participate.” said Jackie Echols, South River Watershed Alliance president.
Also starting at 9 a.m., the Yellow River event will take place in historic Porterdale, near Covington.
Local resident, Tonya Bechtler has played an integral role in galvanizing support for the Yellow River and has recently helped establish a Yellow River/Porterdale Explorers Adopt-A-Stream group. “They have committed to testing the water at the Yellow River monthly for 2013” Tonya said, “This group of disciplined and hardworking kids is ready for the challenge! Let's support them in any way possible.”
Georgia River Network, a non-profit organization working for clean rivers across the state of Georgia, is partnering with the South River Watershed Alliance and the Yellow River Preservation and Conservation group to offer these river unveiling events.
Gwyneth Moody, Community Programs Coordinator at Georgia River Network said, “Ultimately, Georgia River Network hopes to see the South and Yellow Rivers become established Georgia water trails – bringing economic benefits to the surrounding communities, improving quality of life by providing recreation opportunities, and ensuring a healthy and clean river.” A water trail is referred to as a stretch of water along a river or shoreline that has been mapped out.
To register, go to www.garivers.org.