Tag Archives: Willacoochee

Radioactive well water, coal ash, fertilizer, and Tifton superfund sites 2018-10-29

Best to test for arsenic, and maybe lead, radon, and uranium, in your well and hot water heater water. In March 2013, South Health District and the Georgia Department of Health recommended testing for arsenic. That was three years after Janet McMahan discovered the arsenic problem after her family members and pets got cancer. As we wrote a few months before the Health Departments finally made their recommendation, after Janet got Erin Brockovitch involved, you may also find lead and uranium. The problem has not gone away. Also, you may find radon.

Uranium and Lead, Well water

Janet wrote Monday:

This Water is from Well on private property 3 miles from Willacoochee. Sample taken from Water Heater. Lady says she uses all of the hot water when taking a shower each morning. Looking for her Radon Level now.

Radon, Well water

Janet added:

Radon sample collected at Same Well. Continue reading

Canoeing the Alapaha, April 2018

Received April 21, 2018. I’ve added some links. -jsq

Seven of us drove down from north Georgia to the Alapaha for a long weekend paddling trip starting April 12. I had long thought of making this trip, especially because the Canoeing and Kayaking Guide to Georgia rated it as one of the state’s most scenic rivers, “A+.”

We chose the upper stretches, between Willacoochee and Lakeland. One of our group arranged, through extended family, to “camp” the night before putting in, at a house in Lax, just a few miles from the GA-135 bridge where we we started out the next day.

We launched with four boats, three canoes and a kayak, and found the river every bit as scenic as the guide described. We enjoyed the forests of cypress, tupelo, pine, oaks, maples, birch and willow. And the wildlife was equally magnificent: ibis, geese, egrets, herons, buzzards, woodpeckers, beavers (evident through their marks on the trees), and deer and raccoon tracks on the beaches.

First Camp: a beach on a point, Pictures
First Camp: a beach on a point

The paddling was nice and easy, making about 3 mph without breaking a sweat. We had a few tight spots, including Continue reading

Atkinson County passes Alapaha River Water Trail resolution 2018-01-18

It probably didn’t hurt that Lace Futch was Mayor of Willacoochee before he became Chairman of Atkinson County. During a brief discussion, I pointed out that the resolution includes this clause, to fix the last landing name before we update and reprint the Alapaha River Water Trail brochures:

Section 3: The public access to the Alapaha River at GA 135 south of the city of Willacoochee is hereby named Willacoochee Landing;

The Commissioners passed it unanimously.

WWALS board member Shirley Kokidko, who lives in Atkinson County and who had asked for this resolution to be on the agenda, thanked the Commissioners afterwards, and invited them to come on the Hike to the Dead River Sink, noon Saturday, January 27, 2018, explaining that this first outing on the Alapaha Quest was originally scheduled to start at Sheboggy Landing at US 82 and to end up at Willacoochee Landing, but was rescheduled due to low water. Shirley is near the center of each of the pictures below, each taken at Willacoochee Landing on different WWALS outings.

See also the resolution in support of the Alapaha River Water Trail (ARWT) passed by Lanier County 2018-01-08.

After WWALS banner by Gretchen Quarterman
Photo: Gretchen Quarterman for WWALS at Willacoochee Landing 2016-02-20.

Text of the resolution

Continue reading

Atkinson County passes resolution against Georgia state fee diversions 2018-01-18

Chairman Lace Futch had a few words about my grandfather and a few questions, then he asked me to read the BE IT RESOLVED part to the Atkinson County Commissioners. They voted unanimously for the resolution to ask the Georgia state legislature to stop diversion of state fees, Thursday January 18, 2018. WWALS Board Member and Atkinson County resident Shirley Kokidko had asked for it to be on the agenda, and she thanked the Commissioners at the end of the meeting for passing it.

See also the resolutions previously passed by Lanier County 2018-01-08 and the City of Adel 2018-01-16.

Reading, Commission
Photo: Atkinson County Commission by John S. Quarterman for WWALS 2018-01-18.

Text of the Resolution

Continue reading

Update on Rowetown Church to GA 135: WWALS outing 2015-04-18

300x117 Rowetown with Alapaha, GA gauge, in Alapaha River Water Trail, by John S. Quarterman, for WWALS.net, 16 April 2015 Update from expedition leader Bret Wagenhorst:

The current weather forecast for Saturday in Alapaha, GA is cloudy with 20% chance of thunderstorms. The water level on the Alapaha River at the Alapaha gauge is 9.4 ft and appears to be plateauing. [The river has already been going down for a couple of days upstream at the Irwinville gauge. -jsq] Unless there are heavy rains in or north of Alapaha Friday, we should be able to proceed with our planned outing.

It should be a fast trip with the water this high, and with fast, high water comes increased risk, so this is probably not a great outing for a beginner.

Know that the put in is actually Continue reading

Rowetown Church to GA 135: WWALS April outing 2015-04-18

Update 2015-04-17: Water’s high, but looks like the outing is on.

Paddle downstream on the Alapaha River past the Willacoochee River and the city of Willacoochee, among ancient cypress, pines, turtles, fish, and birds. This is a long one, so come prepared: water, snacks, and as always personal flotation devices. It’s also remote and possibly difficult with deadfalls, so please be able to swim or at least float. If you need a boat, please contact wwalswatershed@gmail.com. Facebook event.

When:8AM April 18th 2015
Shuttle:40 min. shuttle
Start:9AM on the water
Duration:approximately 4 hour paddle
Stop:About 1PM
Where:Rowetown Church Cemetery,
7 miles east of Alapaha, GA
via Moore Sawmill Road,
on Rowetown Church Road,
Berrien County, GA
31.33906, -83.149789

This event is FREE! All we ask is that Continue reading

1970s Canoe Trail FAQ

The rivers may be the same, but technology and the cast of characters have changed, as indicated by this Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) list from the 1970s. The acronym FAQ hadn’t been invented yet, for that matter.

This Canoe Trail FAQ is courtesy of John Leonard, Executive Director of the Southe Georgia Regional Commission (SGRC). I’ve added some links and clarifications.

QUESTIONS YOU MAY HAVE CONCERNING THE CANOE TRAILS

  1. 300x388 One typewritten page, in 1970s Canoe Trail FAQ, by John S. Quarterman, for WWALS.net, 0  1979 Days to float entire trail (Alapaha) 4 days-normal water; (Withlacoochee) 3 days-normal water.

    That’s for the 83 miles of the 1970s Alapaha Canoe Trail brochures, and the 65 miles of the 1970s Canoe Guide to the Withlacoochee River Trail brochures. Those distances are shorter than the current Continue reading

Alapaha River @ GA 135, Berrien County south of Willacoochee

300x210 There is a long sandy beach upstream from the bridge, which is a popular summer hangout for locals., in GA 135 Alapaha River access, by Bret Wagenhorst, for WWALS.net, 14 September 2014 There is a long sandy beach upstream from the bridge, which is a popular summer hangout for locals.

Bret Wagenhorst took these pictures 14 September 2014.

See also Alapaha River Water Trail. Continue reading

Alapaha River access at Riverside Church

300x229 Riverside Church, in Alapaha River access at Riverside Church, by Bret Wagenhorst, 14 September 2014 Nine miles south of Willacoochee on GA 135 and twelve miles east of Nashville on GA 76, which turns into Riverside Road as it crosses GA 135, is this traditional put-in for the Alapaha River. However, it is not clear that access is public, so we can’t recommend it unless that is clarified. Continue reading

Ichetucknee Alliance thinks it got the pipeline to move

According to their facebook page today, a conservation group in Florida convinced Sabal Trail to steer clear of their springs. Or did they? The “written assurances” they they got from Spectra’s Andrea Grover say “preferred” and “currently”. In any case, some of Ichetucknee Alliance’s positions are just as valid in WWALS’ watersheds.

Here’s an excerpt from their position, Ichetucknee Alliance Pipeline Position Paper, 21 August 2013, Continue reading