What is the Yellow River Water Trail ?
The YRWT is one of 21 certified Water Trails in Georgia. We are a 501c3 organization formed about 7 years ago. Think Riverkeeper, with a larger scope. The YRWT is GA Water Trails Certified by the Georgia River Network, which has 18 more river trails in process for certification.
Wow, I drive over it often, and never gave it a thought.
Exactly, Awareness and Education is one of our core focuses. The Yellow is a clean, beautiful, river suitable for paddling. People can paddle it 53 miles, through 4 Counties, to Lake Jackson. A Water Trail maps and documents the river with GPS coordinates, river mileage, with access points where paddlers can enter and exit the river; along with descriptions of any features and hazards.
So people can paddle it ?
Yes, for most of it’s length it flowing flatwater, shady, peaceful, beautiful. In a couple spots there is some challenging Whitewater, and we become a destination for those adventure paddlers when the water level is up. For the paddler seeking a peaceful, pretty experience, the river moves at a steady jogging speed.
Someone told me the river wasn’t clean ?
Actually, the river is very clean. The YWRT is an Adopt-a-Stream partner and we test monthly at more than half-a-dozen sites in Gwinnett and DeKalb. We test Chemistry (pH, Conductivity, dissolved Oxygen); and for E.coli, our results have come in healthy for the last 7 years that we’ve been testing.
Wow!... So, how is this good for Lilburn ?
Gwinnett is blessed to have 2 recreationally active rivers, the Chattahoochee and the Yellow; most other Georgia Counties wish they had a river that can be paddled. More and more the Yellow will be an outdoor destination, close to Lilburn, Mountain Park, Centerville, and Stone Mountain. And there is a long-range plan for a Greenway along the river, linking river easements, utility easements, County land and parks.
Increasingly the River and the Greenway will be a destination for families, and these people will spend money, and they want to live near quality outdoor recreation venue. Good for business, good for home values.
How can I help ?
The YRWT needs volunteers to help with pushing the vision, water test, help and lead litter cleanups, paddle the river, and make contacts & relationships with the jurisdictions along the river. For example, all the “Improved” river access points are in Newton Co; in Gwinnett, DeKalb & Rockdale, the access points are “Unimproved”, meaning “natural” we enter/exit at the bridges (Five Forks Trickum, Hwy-78), Yellow River Park, etc. The Paddle Maps list all the access points and their conditions.
We need Gwinnett County to help with inexpensive access improvements, such as grading and gravel, and some parking area.
LBA Presentation: https://drive.google.com/file/d/17PBZ9-7XjUQVqTv8QmtDOpmGn7aAa_El/view?usp=share_link
All the river maps: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1H1Ucwx50WgQK-8vn-62ajrT7IautnlB5/view?usp=share_link
Georgia River Network, Water Trails: https://garivers.org/water-trails-and-paddling/
Yellow River Water Trail: https://garivers.org/water-trails-and-paddling/yellow-river-water-trail/
Yellow River Water Trail Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/yellowriverwatertrail/
--Mark Wilson - Chairman of the Yellow River Water Trail