Monthly Archives: March 2022

Withlacoochee Florida Paddle and Cleanup 2022-06-04

Update 2022-06-03: Because of low water, we’re shifting downstream: Florida Campsites to Allen Ramp, Withlacoochee River 2022-06-04.

Hahira, Georgia, March 30, 2022 — WWALS and Madison and Hamilton Counties, Florida, invite you to join us for a summer paddle to see springs and sinks and to clean up the Withlacoochee River, on Saturday, June 4, 2022. It’s 12.5 miles from Sullivan Launch to Madison Ramp along this wooded blackwater river, with a lunch stop along the way. At lunch, Brett Hemphill of Karst Underwater Research will tell us about the many local caverns connected to the river and its creeks.

1311x676 Distributary, Boats, Withlacoochee River, Hardee Spring, Trash, M, in Withlacoochee Florida Paddle and Cleanup, by John S. Quarterman, for WWALS.net, 4 June 2022Distributary, Boats, Withlacoochee River, Hardee Spring, Trash, M, in Withlacoochee Florida Paddle and Cleanup, by John S. Quarterman, for WWALS.net, 4 June 2022

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Banks Lake Full Pink Moon Paddle 2022-04-16

Come see the sun set and the full pink moon rise, on our leisurely paddle on our mini-Okefenokee, Banks Lake National Wildlife Reserve, just west of Lakeland, Georgia.

When: Gather 7 PM, launch 7:30 PM, moonrise 8:10 PM, sunset 8:01 PM, end 9:30 PM, Saturday, April 16, 2022

Put In: Banks Lake Boat Ramp, 307 Georgia 122, Lakeland, GA 31635, in Lanier County, on the Alapaha River Water Trail (ARWT).

GPS: 31.034824, -83.096725

Take Out: Banks Lake Boat Ramp

Bring: the usual personal flotation device, boat, paddles, food, drinking water, warm clothes, and first aid kit. Also trash pickers and trash bags: every WWALS outing is also a cleanup. Mosquitoes can be bad at dusk so come prepared.

Safety: Each person in a boat, no matter how young or old, must wear a PFD.
You must have a light for your boat or some type of light to have on yourself (glow sticks work well, or head lamp, flashlight, etc.) so other boaters can see you in the dark. It will be totally dark after sunset. A whistle is not required, but it’s a good idea in the dark.

Boats: Bring your own if you have it.
Thanks to Banks Lake Outdoors for free boat rental for these WWALS Full Moon Paddles.
Please ask for boats at least 2 days prior to the event: on the web form on https://wwals.net/outings, or on the facebook event, the meetup, or call 850-290-2350.

Free: This outing is free to WWALS members, and $10 (ten dollars) for non-members. You can pay the $10 at the outing, or online:
https://wwals.net/outings

We recommend you support the work of WWALS by becoming a WWALS member today!
https://wwals.net/donations/#join

Event: facebook, meetup

[Sunset and Moonrise 2021-04-26; Photos: Bobby McKenzie]
Sunset and Moonrise 2021-04-26; Photos: Bobby McKenzie.

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Kayak Raffle Jackson Kayak Big Tuna with paddle 2022-12-07 2022-03-18

You could win this Jackson Kayak Big Tuna fishing kayak, with seats, paddles, and life jackets. Thanks to Frank and Sissy Norman for the generous donation. This gently used kayak has plenty of fun days ahead for the winner.

[Kayak, donors]
Kayak, donors

Kayak Raffle Tickets

The winner will be drawn December 7, 2022, at the Banks Lake Full Cold Moon Paddle. You do not have to be present to win. Proceeds go to support the activities and advocacy of WWALS.

Also thanks to Frank for Continue reading

Peacock Springs to Suwannee, FL, Suwannee River 2022-03-28

DB Marsh stayed several days at Peacock Springs River Camp waiting out thunderstorms, then paddled down past Hal W. Adams Bridge, and slept on a picnick table at Yellow Jacket. He has now has made it to the town of Suwannee near the mouth of the Suwannee River.

[bridge, fungus, hammock, Hart Springs, River]
bridge, fungus, Hart Springs, River

Along the way he got enough cell signal to put up some more stories and pictures. Continue reading

Map: Two Mile and Three Mile Branch, Valdosta 2022-02-14

Here is a map of the locations of the bridges on Two Mile Branch where I found the shopping carts, mattress, and other trash, plus Three Mile Branch. I submitted Click ‘n’ Fixes. Looking forward to the City of Valdosta cleaning up these messes, which otherwise end up in the Withlacoochee River.

For more about the Valdosta trash situation, see https://wwals.net/issues/trash/.

[Map: Two Mile Branch and Three Mile Branch in WLRWT]
Map: Two Mile Branch and Three Mile Branch in the WWALS map of the Withlacoochee and Little River Water Trail (WLRWT).

Click ‘n’ Fix tickets:

There are more pictures on the WWALS website: https://wwals.net/pictures/2022-02-14–valdosta-creeks

 -jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®

You can join this fun and work by becoming a WWALS member today!

Valdosta Creeks 2022-02-14

Update 2022-03-28: Map: Two Mile and Three Mile Branch, Valdosta 2022-02-14

I toured bridges on Two Mile Branch and found three in a row with shopping carts and trash. Three Mile Branch wasn’t as bad. Click ‘n’ Fixes incoming. Looking forward to the City of Valdosta cleaning up these messes, which otherwise end up in the Withlacoochee River.

For more about the Valdosta trash situation, see https://wwals.net/issues/trash/.

[Creeks, trash, shopping buggies]
Creeks, trash, shopping buggies

Two Mile Branch

The Berkley Drive bridge wasn’t too bad that day. The City of Valdosta owns Two Mile Branch all the way from the Joree Millpond dam up past Berkley Drive, so this would be an excellent place for a trash trap. Continue reading

Stop GA HB 1150, the Bad Neighbor Bill

Contact your legislator today: buff.ly/35rcRH2

Georgia already has some of the strongest farm laws in the U.S. against frivolous lawsuits and for property rights. HB 150 would gut protections for property owners, and makes it easier for global meat companies to operate without regard to their neighbors.

Lowndes County farmers Rick and Martha Griffis summed it up in the Valdosta Daily Times Friday:

As local tree farmers, nothing is more important than being able to protect, and be good stewards of the land you are entrusted with.

We are strongly opposed to HB 1150 which repeals and replaces protections for family farmers that have existed for more than three decades.

NC hog CAFO lagoon; Photo: Waterkeeper Alliance
Photo: Waterkeeper Alliance via Sierra Club

You can also find telephone numbers for your Georgia Senator here: Continue reading

Bad downstream Withlacoochee River 2022-03-24

Update 2022-04-02: Surprisingly Clean Withlacoochee River 2022-04-01.

Swimming, fishing, boating, not recommended on the Withlacoochee River this weekend, due to E. coli tested by WWALS at Nankin and State Line Boat Ramps for Thursday. It may all wash away soon, or it may not.

[Chart, River, Swim Guide]
Chart, River, Swim Guide

Also note that after the previous weekend’s heavy rains, Valdosta tested high Fecal coliform upstream at US 41 and GA 133. Probably that will also show up in Valdosta Friday results when we get them. In between, Valdosta upstream results were OK, but then it rained hard Wednesday and Thursday. Continue reading

Holton Creek to Dowling Park River Camp, Suwannee River –DB Marsh 2022-03-23

Update 2022-03-28: Peacock Springs to Suwannee, FL, Suwannee River 2022-03-28.

He’s made it to Dowling Park River Camp on the Suwannee River: Danny “DB” Marsh on his thousand mile loop from Fernandina Beach and back. When he gets cell service, he updates his website.

[Big Shoals, Woods Ferry, Eddies, Holton Creek River Camp]
Big Shoals, Woods Ferry, Eddies, Holton Creek River Camp

He’s having the usual kind of river misadventures. This is an example of why it’s usually not a good idea to boat alone.

About 1 AM it was about time to make camp. I pulled up to a steep bank next to the I-75 Bridge. I stepped off the kayak onto what I thought was a white sand bank. It was not sand at all, but very slippery white clay. My feet went out from under me and in the next instant I was swimming.

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KFC to Sugar Creek 2022-03-21

Here may be how that KFC trash got into the WWALS boom on Sugar Creek.

Remember, you can report trash problems through Valdosta’s Click ‘n’ Fix smartphone app. For trash or other problems elsewhere, here’s how to report: https://wwals.net/report/.

[KFC trash, creeks, boom]
KFC trash, creeks, boom

There’s a Kentucky Fried Chicken at 1300 St. Augustine Road, marked by the big red pushbutton on the map. Continue reading