Monthly Archives: May 2023

Banks Lake Full Strawberry Moon Paddle 2023-06-03

Update 2023-06-09: Pictures: Banks Lake Full Strawberry Moon –jsq 2023-06-03.

Join us for a leisurely Sunset and Full Moon Paddle, with bats!

When: Gather 7:30 PM, launch 8 PM, moonrise 8:28 PM, sunset 8:32 PM, end 9:30 PM, Saturday, June 3, 2023

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

[Photos: John S. Quarterman, Paula Williams, 2022-06-14]
Photos: John S. Quarterman, Paula Williams, 2022-06-14

Continue reading

Pictures: Portage Big Shoals, Paddle Little Shoals, Suwannee River 2023-05-20

We saw the lally columns of Old Godwin Bridge, Bell Springs Run, Robinson Creek, Falling Creek, and we portaged around Big Shoals and paddled through Little Shoals, on the Suwannee River to White Springs Wayside Park Ramp, in a WWALS outing, Saturday, May 20, 2023.

[Launch, Big Shoals, Little Shoals, Falling Creek, Wayside Park, Suwannee River 2023-05-20]
Launch, Big Shoals, Little Shoals, Falling Creek, Wayside Park, Suwannee River 2023-05-20

Everyone had a good time in the balmy, breezy, partly-cloudy weather. The White Springs Gauge read 51.5 feet, which was perfect.

Plus a few small alligators.

Thanks to Dennis James Price for leading this one, and for pointing out the excellent lunch spot just below Big Shoals. Continue reading

Moody AFB EIS for Comprehensive Airspace Initiative 2023-05-16

WWALS got a paper letter dated May 16, 2023, which says, “The [Department of the Air Force (DAF)] is publishing a Notice of Availablitlity (NOA) in the Federal Register announcing the availability of the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the Comprehensive Airspace Initiative at Moody Air Force Base, Georgia. The publication of the NOA on 19 May 2023 begins a 30-day waiting period that closes on 18 June 2023.”

[Proposed Action & Alternatives, Moody AFB EIS]
Proposed Action & Alternatives, Moody AFB EIS

Apparently you can still send in comments during that 30-day period, but since there has been a long previous public comment period, it does not seem likely many further changes will be made.

All the documents are available from:

They are also available Continue reading

Okapilco Creek Bridge closed between Pavo and Barney, GA 2023-04-07

It’s actually two bridges closed: over what GDOT calls Brice Pond Tributary Bridge and over Okapilco Creek.

There are detours shorter between Pavo and Barney than GDOT indicates.

Which is fortunate, since the closure is very long: from 7 AM April 11, 2023 to 4 PM July 31, 2024, according to GDOT 511.

[Creeks and Bridges]
Creeks and Bridges

Press Alert, Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT), April 7, 2023, Brooks County… Two Bridges on SR 122 Closed Beginning Next Week, Continue reading

Clean Withlacoochee River 2023-05-25

Update 2023-06-02: Clean Withlacoochee River, bad Sheboggy on Alapaha River 2023-06-01.

All clear for the Withlacoochee River for the weekend.

Happy swimming, boating, and fishing!

[Chart, River, Swim Guide 2023-05-25]
Chart, River, Swim Guide 2023-05-25

No rain is predicted for the weekend.

No new sewage spills have been reported. in the Suwannee River Basin in Georgia or Florida.

Or join us at the Florida Folk Festival, at Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park, White Springs, Florida, on the banks of the Suwannee River.

The most recent results we have from Valdosta are for Continue reading

Ready for Florida Folk Festival 2023-05-25

WWALS Executive Director Gretchen Quarterman says all the festival materials are in the tent, ready for Florida Folk Festival Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

[Suwannee Riverkeeper tent, raffle kayak, and carrilon]
Suwannee Riverkeeper tent, raffle kayak, and carrilon

Except of course the raffle kayak, with the carrillon visible behind it, at Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park, White Springs, Florida, on the banks of the Suwannee River. Continue reading

Dock work at Gibson Park Ramp 2023-05-25

Gibson Park Ramp will not be closed for upcoming work, except possibly briefly.

Inquiring minds wanted to know, so I called Chuck Burnett, Director, Hamilton County Parks & Recreation.

[Square Gibson Park Ramp 2022-02-05]
Gibson Park Ramp 2022-02-05

The work is actually about the dock, not the ramp. Continue reading

PFAS fixes to wastewater treatment could keep drug residue out of rivers 2021-08-11

The PFAS problem may cause wastewater treatment that cleans up another bad problem: pharmaceuticals.

Tara Lohan, The Revelator (Center for Biological Diversity), August 11, 2021, What Happens to Wildlife Swimming in a Sea of Our Drug Residues?

Wastewater exposes plants and wildlife to hundreds of chemical compounds. Researchers are learning about potential side effects and solutions.

Effects range from obvious physical defects to behavior change. For example, bold crawfish are not safe crawfish.

[Valdosta WWTP clean outfall, 2023-03-04, 30.8361045, -83.3595411]
Valdosta WWTP clean outfall, 2023-03-04, 30.8361045, -83.3595411

But a different type of contaminant may lead to fixes. Continue reading

Lowndes County wins Georgia award for litter program 2023-05-15

Update 2023-08-30: Lowndes County Litter Crew, JLH Beach, Folsom Bridge Landing, Little River @ GA 122 2023-08-23.

WWALS congratulates Lowndes County on winning a statewide award for their litter crew. We can attest that boat ramps and other public access points to rivers in Lowndes County are much cleaner since the county litter crew has been picking up there weekly, both on the WWALS Withlacoochee and Little River Water Trail and the Alapaha River Water Trail.

We’d also like to thank Lowndes County Public Works for a longstanding agreement that they pick up bagged trash that WWALS leaves at river access points.

[Clyattville-Nankin Boat Ramp: Lowndes County Litter Control 2021-06-10 (Photo: Bobby McKenzie) and WWALS cleanup 2022-12-17 (Photo: Gretchen Quarterman)]
Clyattville-Nankin Boat Ramp: Lowndes County Litter Control 2021-06-10 (Photo: Bobby McKenzie) and WWALS cleanup 2022-12-17 (Photo: Gretchen Quarterman)

Malia Thomas, Valdosta Daily Times, May 15, 2023 Lowndes County honored with 2023 Georgia County Excellence Award for litter program,

VALDOSTA — Lowndes County has been recognized with a 2023 Georgia County Excellence Award for its litter program.

Continue reading

Send in your song for the Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest 2023-09-22

2023-07-11: Chuck Roberts returns as M.C. for Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest plus WWALS River Revue.

Submissions are open for the 2023 Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest.

[Songwriting Flyer 2023]
Songwriting Flyer 2023

$300 First Prize, and $50 each for best song sent in from inside the Suwannee River Basin, and from outside.

Plus plaques to each best song per genre.

All finalists get videos posted on YouTube, and a one year WWALS membership.

WWALS President Sara Jay Jones said, “Musicians, song submissions are open! Don’t wait until the deadline to send in your song.”

Here’s the entry form:

WWALS Development Director Veronica Oakler said, Continue reading