Tuesday, August 28, 2012

South Chickamauga Canoe Trip

On Sunday I helped lead a canoe trip on South Chickamauga Creek sponsored by Outdoor Chattanooga and the Tennessee Aquarium. Ten folks and I met at the relatively new Sterchi Farm Greenway Boat Ramp, part of the South Chickamauga Creek Greenway Trail.  Our trip took us about one mile upstream, where we were paddling with the current (instead of against it) as TVA hydroelectric releases from Chickamauga Dam caused the creek to flow backwards, eventually raising the water level several feet!  The banks of the creek were lined with large hardwoods and several flowering semi-aquatic plants, including Hibiscus and Cardinal Flowers.
Bluffs appeared at several sites on the creek with the Greenway Trail elevating over them.  

We collected several species of fishes, including the very transparent Inland Silverside (Menidia beryllina) and the snubnosed Tennessee Darter (Etheostoma tenneseense).  

We also saw a Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias), water snakes, crayfish, basses and bream sunfishes.  It was great weather and a great time!  Look for more outdoor activities in the Tennessee Aquarium’s Riverwatch magazine and on the Events Page.

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