Tag Archives: Alapaha River

Bad Water Quality Creeks and Withlacoochee River 2022-08-11

Update 2022-08-16: Good water quality, Ichetucknee and Santa Fe Rivers 2022-08-12.

Update 2022-08-15: Valdosta sewer spill, Meadowbrook Drive at Gornto Road 2022-08-14.

WWALS sampled 19 locations yesterday, and found bad water quality upstream on the Withlacoochee River, with worse on Beaverdam Creek, Cat Creek, and Beatty Branch. Valdosta had another small sewage spill Wednesday a week ago, but that probably did not get into the river, and is gone by now.

Quality was surprisingly good downstream of Okapilco Creek, which usually has cattle manure runoff coming out of Brooks County, Georgia, but apparently did not yesterday. Even Quitman’s Monday sewage spill of unknown quantity apparently had little effect or was washed away by yesterday.

[Chart + Little River, Creeks, Withlacoochee River, Alapaha River, Swim Guide]
Chart + Little River, Creeks, Withlacoochee River, Alapaha River, Swim Guide

Still, I would worry about that upstream contamination washing downstream. Instead of the Withlacoochee River, maybe you’d like to come along on the Suwannee River tomorrow. Continue reading

Trash behind Family Dollar, Inner Perimeter, Valdosta, GA 2022-08-08

Bobby McKenzie wrote Monday, “I swear I’m not looking for these! I just pulled into Family Dollar by my house to get a drink….which I never do and it’s staring me in the face.

[Trash down ditch beside Family Dollar, Inner Perimeter]
Trash down ditch beside Family Dollar, Inner Perimeter

Bobby added, “Any meeting discussing ways to fix this problem MUST HAVE City Marshalls in it!”

Seems like that would be necessary, since City Marshals are supposed to enforce Valdosta’s ordinances, which include parking lot owners are supposed to have so many garbage cans per number of parking spaces, and are not supposed to let trash off their property.

This is Family Dollar #10742, at 3820 Inner Perimeter Road, Valdosta, GA 31602. That’s next just across Barack Obama Blvd. from the old Valdosta High School. That drainage ditch appears to go towards Northway Community Church, and seems to be uphill from a row of houses on Highland Heights Lane. This trash may wash down past Newbern Middle School. Continue reading

Training: Water Quality Testing, 2022-09-10

You can learn how to help test water quality in the Suwannee River Basin.

WWALS testing trainer Gretchen Quarterman will do the classroom portion of the course by zoom, followed by hands-on practical training at a waterway with physical distancing. This is both Chemical and Bacterial training by Georgia Adopt-A-Stream (AAS) methods.

Yes, we can and do use this in Florida as well as Georgia.

[Map and table, Georgia AAS]
Map and table, Georgia AAS

We currently have testers on the Little, Withlacoochee, Alapaha, Ichetucknee, and Santa Fe Rivers.

We need more of those, and also for the Alapahoochee and Suwannee Rivers, as well as Cat Creek, Beatty Branch, Sugar Creek, and especially Okapilco Creek and Crooked Creek, plus others.

For more, see: https://wwals.net/testing/

Sign up: https://forms.gle/37DawiGAJYoyqtPKA Continue reading

Rivers probably OK water quality 2022-08-04

Update 2022-08-12: Bad Water Quality Creeks and Withlacoochee River 2022-08-11.

Chances are the rivers are OK today for this weekend.

The test results we have for Thursday from WWALS and for Wednesday from Valdosta are all good. No new sewage spills have been reported in Georgia or Florida in the Suwannee River Basin.

[Chart, Rivers, Swim Guide]
Chart, Rivers, Swim Guide

However, there was more than an inch of rain on the west side of Brooks County, Georgia, yesterday. We don’t know whether that washed any cattle manure down Okapilco Creek into the Withlacoochee River. That rain fell in the afternoon, after testing times, and our downstream WWALS testers are off this week anyway. More rain is predicted every day for a week. Continue reading

Draft GA-EPD Hazardous Waste permit to add Post-Closure Care Plan (PCCP) for Perma-Fix 2022-09-08

A draft permit is open for comment until September 8, 2022, on a modification to the GA-EPD Hazardous Waste Permit for the closed Perma-Fix site in Valdosta.

[Notice and Draft Permit]
Notice and Draft Permit

Notice

According to the notice, HW-085-D-ExcaliburRealtyValdosta.pdf “The modified permit, if approved, will incorporate the Post-Closure Care Plan (PCCP) and update the Permit content to reflect changes made by the Director to the groundwater protection standards (GWPS) applicable to the facility.” Continue reading

Rivers Alive Trash Pick Up, Alapaha River, Berrien Beach Boat Ramp, 2022-09-24

Get a Rivers Alive t-shirt for picking up river trash. Come to Berrien Beach Boat Ramp with gloves and trash pickers if you have them. No boat required, but those of us who bring one will also float across to Berrien Beach itself and clean up there, or you can drive across the bridge and get there by land.

When: 9 AM – noon, Saturday, September 24, 2022

Put In: Berrien Beach Boat Ramp, 12496 Highway 168, Nashville, GA 31639, N side of GA 168, right bank, west side of Alapaha River, in Berrien County, Georgia.

GPS: 31.159076, -83.045554

[Volunteers at Berrien Beach Boat Ramp, Rivers Alive t-shirt 2020-09-12]
Volunteers at Berrien Beach Boat Ramp, Rivers Alive t-shirt 2020-09-12

Bring: No boat required, but you can bring one if you like, with the usual personal flotation device, boat, paddles, food, drinking water, warm clothes, and first aid kit. Also trash pickers and trash bags: this WWALS outing is a cleanup. Continue reading

Good Water Quality, Withlacoochee, Little, Alapaha Rivers 2022-07-28

Update 2022-08-05: Rivers probably OK water quality 2022-08-04.

Update 2022-07-29: Madison Health lifts Withlacoochee River Health Advisory 2022-07-29.

Happy boating, swimming, and fishing on the Withlacoochee, Alapaha, and Little Rivers this weekend, according to the most recent water quality test results we have.

No significant rain has fallen in the past two days, and none is predicted for the weekend. And no significant new sewage spills have been reported, so chances are good for all weekend.

Madison Health has not yet lifted its Withlacoochee River Health Alert, because they want successive good results. But we call them according to the most recent data we have.

And happy chainsawing and picking up trash tomorrow on the Withlacoochee River next to Valdosta.

[Chart, Rivers, Swim Guide 2022-07-28]
Chart, Rivers, Swim Guide 2022-07-28

Valdosta’s results upstream were OK for Wednesday a week ago, Friday, Monday, and this Wednesday, but they were various colors of bad downstream for those same days. Thanks to Scott Fowler of Valdosta Utilities for getting those results updated on Valdosta’s website today. Continue reading

Withlacoochee River OK, Cat Creek bad 2022-07-14

Update 2022-07-22: Bad Quality Withlacoochee River 2022-07-21.

All clear for fishing, swimming, and boating on the Withlacoochee, Little, and Alapaha Rivers, according to the latest water quality test results we have.

But avoid Cat Creek and Beatty Branch for fishing. See below. (I don’t know anybody crazy enough to boat or swim in those creeks.)

There hasn’t been much rain the past few days, so probably not much contamination will wash into the rivers. No sewage spills have been reported in Florida or Georgia, other than Valdosta’s 200 gallon sewage spill on Baytree Road, which they vacuumed up quickly enough that probably little if any ever reached the Withlacoochee River.

Thunderstorms could change things quickly, but that’s what we know now.

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

Thanks to Scott Fowler of Valdosta Utilities for forwarding Valdosta test results soon after they are finished, so we know that Valdosta E. coli results were good for Wednesday and Monday at US 41, GA 133, and US 84. And we know Valdosta’s US 41 and GA 133 results for last Friday, July 8, 2022, were sky-high: 4,700 and 5,200 cfu/100 mL, respectively. The alert limit is 1,000.

Those high results could not be related to the July 9th Valdosta spill, because it hadn’t happened yet. That E. coli is probably not coming from Valdosta, since US 41 is upstream of almost all of Valdosta. Sure, something could be coming down Cherry Creek through Lake Cleve into the river, or it could be septic tanks in houses around there, or septic tanks across the river in Lowndes County.

Since high E. coli keeps turning up at US 41 and GA 133, WWALS set out to find out where it is coming from. Continue reading

Five Rivers Clean 2022-07-07

Update 2022-07-15: Withlacoochee River OK, Cat Creek bad 2022-07-14.

According to ten WWALS Thursday test sites on five rivers, and Madison Health lifting their Withlacoochee River Health Advisory, five rivers tested clean Thursday.

There was substantial rain yesterday, but since previous rains probably washed off the worst stuff, most likely there won’t be much effect on the rivers.

Happy boating, swimming, and fishing this weekend!

[Chart, Rivers, Swim Guide]
Chart, Rivers, Swim Guide

The most recent Valdosta data Continue reading

Book: Canoeing and Kayaking Georgia, Third Edition 2022-06-30

The Third Edition of Canoeing and Kayaking Georgia. is finally out, after perhaps-perfectionist Suzanne Welander worked on it seemingly forever, and it is worth the wait.

[Cover and inside]
Cover and inside

It is even more thorough than previous editions, with some new put-ins added Continue reading