Volume 83, Issue 20
Web Edition EditionSERVING BREVARD COLLEGE SINCE 1935
Voice of the Rivers 2018
Cape Fear river trip
Professors Dr. Jennifer Kafsky and Dr. Sarah Maveety have selected the participants for 2018’s Voice of the Rivers trip. The students selected along with Drs. Kafsky and Maveety will spend 18 days canoeing and sea kayaking along the Haw and Cape Fear Rivers this May. The students will be taking six credit hours during the trip which will fulfill the LINC (Learning in Community) graduation requirement. The two courses for this year’s trip are WLEE 290: River Recreation, Education, and Conservation and BIO 290: Aquatic Ecosystems & Biodiversity. The team will meet for a training weekend on April 13-15, then set off on May 7 from the headwaters of the Cape Fear, just north of Greensboro, to begin their 300 mile paddling journey. — Mary Lewe
Photo from Cape Fear River Watch
Map of the Haw and Cape Fear Rivers.
Valen Day m tine’s essag inside es !
February 14, 2018
Road vandalism and closures in Pisgah By Lauren M. Fowler
Arts & Life Editor Access roads in the Pisgah National Forest are suffering a harsh winter as the frequent freeze thaw periods and recent vandalism have caused severe damage making many areas in the forest inaccessible. Because of high repair costs, the roads are not expected to be open for use by the public anytime soon. The impacts echo all throughout the Brevard community as hikers, climbers, and even the BC WLEE department will feel the loss. Roads such as Cathy’s Creek Road, which is the access point for many of the Cedar Rock climbs, are no longer navigable. The access for the base of Looking Glass rock, 475B (also known as Headwaters Road), suffered damages so severe that two foot deep potholes and slick mud make up what used to be a maintained and navigable gravel road. These damages are caused by the freeze thaw periods during typical Pisgah winter weather which loosens the gravel, making it easier for cars to dislodge while traveling on it, slowly degrading the roads down to the mud underneath. Most of the gravel roads in Pisgah are closed during the winter months in an attempt to reduce these impacts. The U.S. Department of Agriculture website stated with the release of the list of road closures, “Additional traffic can increase damage to roads and cause sediment runoff into adjacent streams.
These conditions also create a public safety concern because of the likelihood of having difficulties traveling on the road, including the possibility of becoming stranded. The duration of these closures will be determined by weather conditions.” This year, due to vandals breaking locks on the gates and driving on the roads while they are in this fragile state, some of the damages have gone beyond what they have been in previous years. Limited funding for the forest and the high cost of fixing these roads make future repairs less likely to be a quick fix in the coming months. In an interview for the Asheville CitizenTimes, Dave Casey, the new Pisgah District Ranger for Pisgah National Forest, said, “We do not have the funding to grade and gravel all of the district roads multiple times per year. Our budget is generally sufficient to grade only the roads with the greatest need once per year and if we have extensive road damage to fix, those repairs leave us less money to do regular road maintenance.” Damaged roads not only limit access for visitors of the forest but also prevent groups like the rescue squad from being able to efficiently access points deeper in the forest to give aid. All visitors to the forest are asked drive carefully on open roads to preserve them as much as possible through this season and if vandalism is discovered, to contact the Forest Service ranger office.
Photo from the U.S. Forest Service
Cathy’s Creek Road, the access point for several trip routes used by the BC WLEE Department, has suffered severe