Author Archives: jsq

Banks Lake Full Pink Moon Paddle, 2019-04-19

A leisurely sunset paddle to watch the sun set and the full moon rise over the Banks Lake, a mini-Okefenokee near Lakeland, Georgia.

When: Gather 7:00 PM, launch 7:30 PM, Friday, April 19, 2019

Put In: Banks Lake Boat Ramp, 307 Georgia 122, Lakeland, GA 31635, in Lanier County.

GPS: 31.034824, -83.096725

Take Out: Banks Lake Boat Ramp

Bring: the a light for your boat or some type of light to have on yourself (glow stick, head lamp, or flashlight), and bring a rope for your boat. You must wear a Personal Flotation Device (PFD). A whistle is not required, but it’s a good idea in the dark. Dress for cold weather, the temperature drops quickly after the sun sets. Also trash pickers and trash bags: every WWALS outing is also a cleanup.

Free: This outing is free to WWALS members, and $10 (ten dollars) for non-members. We recommend you support the work of WWALS by becoming a WWALS member today!

Event: facebook, meetup

Zoom, Moonrise
Photo: Shirley Kokidko, Banks Lake Spring Equinox Full Moon Paddle, 2019-03-20.

Continue reading

Pictures Banks Lake Spring Equinox Full Moon Paddle 2019-03-20

“I don’t know which was more beautiful, the sunset or the full moon rising,” wrote Shirley Kokidko, after the Spring Equinox Full Moon Paddle on Banks Lake, 2019-03-20. Join us next month for the Banks Lake Full Pink Moon Paddle, 2019-04-19.

Colors, Sunset

Colors, Sunset

Zoom, Moonrise

Continue reading

Cone Bridge, Big Shoals Portage, to Suwannee Wayside Park, Suwannee River, 2019-05-04

This 15.6 mile paddle includes a strenuous portage around Big Shoals, the biggest whitewater rapids in Florida and paddling over a smaller set of rapids at Little Shoals. Due to the portage which involves climbing up and down steep, sandy banks with kayaks, carrying kayaks 300 feet and lifting over downed trees, this trip is listed as difficult. You must be physically able to get back into your kayak on the slippery edge of this swift moving section of the Suwannee River. We help each other as much as possible, but ultimately you are responsible for your boat. We will take a break at the shoals and enjoy the outstanding view. No one is paddling over the shoals and this portage is the only way around.

When: Gather 8:30 AM, Launch 10 AM, Thursday, May 4, 2019

Put In: Cone Bridge Ramp, From Lake City, travel north on US 441 to NW Cone Bridge Road; turn left and follow road to ramp in Columbia County.

GPS: 30.445156, -82.670845

Take Out: Suwannee Wayside Ramp, From White Springs, travel south on US 41 to the river; the ramp is on the south side in the town park. Hamilton County.

Bring: a rope to drag your boat, 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.

Free: This outing is free to WWALS members, and $10 (ten dollars) for non-members. We recommend you support the work of WWALS by becoming a WWALS member today!

Event: facebook, meetup

Photo: Gretchen Quarterman, Cone Bridge Boat Ramp, 2015-11-22
Photo: Gretchen Quarterman, Cone Bridge Boat Ramp, 2015-11-22

This paddle is on the Suwannee River Wilderness Trail (SRWT). Continue reading

Public Meetings, Revisions, GA Nonpoint Source Management Plan 2019-03-29

As usual, the closest public meeting to the biggest city in the Suwannee River Basin is two hours away, this time in Dawson, Georgia. Received Monday via email. The documents attached are on the WWALS website.

When: Friday, March 29, 2019 from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm

Where: 152 N. Main Street, Dawson, GA

Event: facebook, meetup

[Meeting locations]
Meeting locations
google map

EPD Watershed Protection Branch

Notice of Public Meetings for the Revisions to Georgia’s
Statewide Nonpoint Source Management Plan
Continue reading

Pictures: Azalea Festival, Valdosta, GA 2019-03-09-10

It was a fine time with 30,000 friends at Azalea Festival in Valdosta, Georgia.

See also Onemile Branch Cleanup, Drexel Park, during Azalea Festival 2019-03-10.

Saturday

Gretchen Quarterman and Julie Magruder, Booth

Gretchen Quarterman and Julie Magruder, Booth

Paddle Georgia, PR

Paddle Georgia, PR

Profile, Raffle Kayak

Profile, Raffle Kayak

Front, Raffle Kayak
Front, Raffle Kayak

Popular, Froggy Toss

Popular, Froggy Toss

Instructions, Froggy Toss
Instructions, Froggy Toss

Everybody, Froggy Toss
Everybody, Froggy Toss

Sunday

Photographs, advocacy, raffle kaya, Booth

Photographs, advocacy, raffle kaya, Booth

Sara Jay, Laura Bauer, Gretchen Quarterman, Booth

Sara Jay, Laura Bauer, Gretchen Quarterman, Booth

Under sail, Raffle Kayak

Under sail, Raffle Kayak

For more WWALS outings and events as they are posted, see the WWALS calendar or the WWALS outings and events web page. WWALS members also get an upcoming list in the Tannin Times newsletter.

 -jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®

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

Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest Committee Meeting 2019-03-24

Come on over to Live Oak this Sunday to help organize the Second Annual Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest! Thanks again to radio host Chris Beckham for agreeing to M.C. the Contest, which will be August 24, 2019, at The Salty Snapper in Valdosta, with submissions opening the first of April.

When: 6PM, Sunday, March 24, 2019

Where: Sakura Japanese Sushi and Grill, 1548 Ohio Avenue South, Live Oak, FL 32064-4514

Event: facebook, meetup

Tom H. Johnson Jr., Laura D'Alisera, Eileen Box, John S. Quarterman, Scotti Jay, Sara Jay; Photo: Mary Catherine Pindar, 2019-02-17
Tom H. Johnson Jr., Laura D’Alisera, Eileen Box, John S. Quarterman, Scotti Jay, Sara Jay; Photo: Mary Catherine Pindar, 2019-02-17

We made quite a bit of progress at last month’s meeting, including setting the date of the Contest, and we put out a press release.

Now we need to Continue reading

Valdosta Sewage Spills Workshop at Florida Senate 2019-03-20

A Florida Senate Committee has scheduled a Workshop on Valdosta Sewage Spills.

Table, Committee

The same session this Wednesday afternoon will hear three water bills, SB 1100 about funding water well testing, which is relevant to the recent detection of E. coli in for example Hamilton County wells, SB 1758, which includes some changes to Basin Management Action Plan (BMAP) requirements and requirements for wastewater treatment plants to notify customers of unlawful discharges, and SB 1552 about Red Tide mitigation.

Event: facebook, meetup

Florida Senator Bill Montford, District 3 When I went by Senator Bill Montford’s office last Wednesday, his staffer said they would be scheduling this workshop, with public input. They have done so. Senator Montford is the Chair of the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources. His District 3 includes Hamilton, Madison, and Taylor Counties, all of which are members of the twelve-county Florida Rivers Task Force and signatories on its Resolution asking for assistance from Florida and Georgia about Valdosta sewage spills. The Withlacoochee River, into which much of Valdosta’s raw sewage spills have gone, is the border between Madison and Hamilton Counties, and the Alapaha River, into which basin other Valdosta spills have gone, runs through Hamilton County. Taylor County is not on either of those rivers nor on the Suwannee River, yet its economy is affected by the stigma of Valdosta’s sewage spills.

The Florida Senate, COMMITTEE MEETING NOTICE,

ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES
Senator Montford, Chair
Senator Albritton, Vice Chair

MEETING DATE: Wednesday, March 20, 2019

TIME: 4:00—6:00 p.m.

PLACE: Mallory Horne Committee Room, 37 Senate Building [404 S. Monroe, Tallahassee, FL 32399]

AMENDMENT DEADLINE: Continue reading

WWALS at Suwannee Spring Reunion at the Music Park 2019-03-21-24

Join Suwannee Riverkeeper for music on the Suwannee River, and help us talk about paddling on our rives and advocacy. Yes, icluding wastewater and pipelines, as well as phosphate mines. Plus kayak raffle and froggy toss game! All at Suwannee Spring Reunion.

When:

Thursday March 21 through Sunday March 24, 2019

Where: Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park
3076 95th Dr, Live Oak, Florida 32060

Event: facebook, meetup

Suwannee Riverkeeper, WWALS

What: Suwannee Spring Reunion, featuring Marty Stuart and His Fabulous Superlatives, Steep Canyon Rangers, Billy Strings, Donna The Buffalo, Larry Keel Experience, Chatham County Line, Jim lauderdale, Verlon Thompson, Shawn Camp Band, The Grass Is Dead, Jon Stickley Trio, Town Mountain, Joe Craven & Hattie Craven, Rev. Jeff Mosier, Daddy, The Mammals, Pigeon Kings, Roy Book Binder, Nikki Talley, Nora Jane Struthers, Ralph Roddenbery, TKO featuring Duke Bardwell, Cicada Rhythm, Bolkun Brothers, Quartermeen, Sloppy Joe Habanero, Habanero Honeys, and The Adventures of Annabelle Lyn.

If you want to help at the WWALS booth, send email to wwalswatershed@gmail.com or call 850-290-2350.

 -jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®

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

E. coli at GA 133 Withlacoochee 2019-03-05

Valdosta’s monthly water quality testing data shows E. coli down at three out of their six remaining stations, and up at the other three, highest at US 41 on the Withlacoochee River, upstream of most of Valdosta and its Withlacoochee Wastewater Treatment Plant. This data is for Tuesday, March 5, 2019, and was obtained as usual by an open records request from WWALS.

Graph, Withlacoochee River Basin, Withlacoochee

Even that 265 cfu/100 ml E. coli is barely above the Georgia limit of 200, and far below the alert line of 1,000.

US 41, Withlacochee River, Withlacoochee

GA 133, Withlacochee River, Withlacoochee

At the next station downstream from US 41, at GA 133, the Withlacoochee River still showed Continue reading

Waterkeepers in Tallahassee 2019-03-13

Three of the Waterkeepers of Florida were at the Capitol in Tallahassee Wednesday, two of them for Reclaiming Florida’s Future for All, an annual event organized by ReThink Energy Florida and others. Of course Our Santa Fe River (OSFR) was prominently represented. Banning fracking was top of the long list of issues on the agenda. Water Quality and Quantity included Valdosta (and other) wastewater.

[Speaking]
Speaking

Lake Worth Waterkeeper Reinaldo Diaz advocates for the Lake Worth Lagoon and its watershed, a coastal estuary running along the eastern edge of Palm Beach County.

[Lisa Rinaman et al.]
Lisa Rinaman et al.

Scariest of all to polluters is St Johns Riverkeeper Lisa Rinaman, seen here with Continue reading