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First Quarter, 2000

OFFICERS for 2000:

Karen Kustafik: President.

Robin Roecker: Vice President.

Dianne Mullis: Secretary.

Rembert Milligan: Treasurer.

Mandy Manuel: Member-At-Large

Ed Walshe: Member-At-Large

Kyle Altman: Cruise-Master (Flatwater and sea)

Ricky Odum: Cruise-Master (Whitewater).

Julia Raines: Membership.

Parkin Hunter: Newsletter Editor.

Bill Graves: Former President and Board Member.

Open: Safety and Instruction.

The Palmetto Paddlers meet on the last Tuesday of each month in the Gamecock Room of the Luther Lee Building, corner of Lincoln and Lady Streets in the Vista, Columbia, SC at 7:00 P.M.

The Palmetto Paddlers, Inc. is a non-profit corporation. Its purposes are to (1) encourage exploration of recreational waterways, (2) encourage preservation of waterways, i.e., conservation of forests, parks, wildlife, (3) promote enjoyment and appreciation of wilderness cruising and whitewater sports, (4) promote safety/proficiency in rescue/self-rescue, and (5) publish and demonstrate developments in all aspects of paddling.


I met Laura Parker, a past president of the club this year at Gauley Fest. A few months later, reading the Lower Saluda River Corridor Plan, I found our club’s name under a User Safety heading. Listed were David Rhoten and Bryan Allen, unfamiliar names. I feel like I’m missing something by not knowing more of the folks who came before me. I appreciate their efforts. Last month, I pasted labels on postcards for our January meeting. There were lots of names I couldn’t put faces to.

This is my fourth year on the water, but in that time, I’ve watched the membership roles of the club change. Some of you who taught me and some of you who swam beside me are still here. Others have moved on. I would love to see our roster swell in 2000, with paddlers old and new.

I would like to ask each of you to consider your reasons for joining Palmetto Paddlers. Is it for fellowship? For trips? What would you like to see the club do this year? I hope you’ll share your thoughts with me, and with the rest of the members.

Robin Roecker has arranged a full slate of programs for the year. I’m thrilled to welcome Barry Beasley this month. His prose, coupled with Tom Blagden Jr’s. photographs pay tribute to our favorite places in the recently published The Rivers of South Carolina.

Parkin Hunter is revising our web page, making our organization easier for prospective members to find through a link with The State newspaper. He even worked up a nifty club slogan! We’re discussing ways of raising community awareness about the club. When the officers met recently, we discussed pool sessions, regular river days and instruction.

Learning to paddle has been one of the greatest gifts in my life. The friendships I’ve made on the river have sustained me. This New Year, I again resolved to get on the water more often, to improve my level of paddling. In keeping with that resolution, I invite you all to join me on the Saluda at the Zoo on Thursday nights come daylight savings time. Let’s celebrate together.


AWA (American Whitewater Affiliation) has asked for our membership list. Please notify Karen if you do not want them to have your name. Check out their website at If you are not a member, I would encourage you to join. AWA is very active with river access issues and has been involved with the Sumter National Forest Plan (Chattooga River) issues in South Carolina.


Email Karen if you are interested in pool time. Depending on interest, we will try to set up some pool time. There will be a small charge for pool rental.


Robin Roecker has put together a great meeting schedule. Please come to these meetings and support the Club and learn some interesting things. Bring a friend.

February 29, 2000: Barry Beasley, SCDNR, Coordinator of the State Wild and Scenic River Program and co-author with Tom Blagden, Jr. of The Rivers of South Carolina, will be the speaker. Barry is a great speaker and knows about all there is to know about South Carolina’s rivers. Please come to the Luther Lee Building at 7:00. If you have not read The Rivers of South Carolina, sponsored by SCANA Corporation in cooperation with The Nature Conservancy of South Carolina, you have missed a great book on South Carolina rivers. Look at for information about SC’s rivers and the SCDNR’s River Conservation Program.

March 28, 2000: Jay Bender, Esquire, a Columbia environmental lawyer will talk about current environmental issues of interest to the paddling community.

April 25, 2000: Used Gear Sale. Bring all that smelly old neoprene and your extra boats to the Luther Lee building at 7:00 for the annual used equipment sale.

May 30, 2000: Talk on River Safety. Speaker to be announced. Take a look at for some good information on river safety and rescue. For a great source of information about knots, look at Roper’s Knot page


IT’S THE NEW YEAR. PLEASE PAY YOUR DUES. Membership in the Palmetto Paddlers is open to the public and new members are always welcome. Individual dues are $15 per year and family dues are $20 per year. Membership is for the calendar year, January 1 - December 31. E-mail the newsletter editor for a membership application. IF YOU HAVE NOT PAID YOUR DUES FOR 2000, please send your check to Rembert Milligan, Palmetto Paddlers, Inc., P.O. Box 984, Columbia, SC 29204.

May 13 - Lake Murray Rescue Clinic sponsored by the Columbia Sea Yakkers. Open to sea-kayakers for a small fee. Contact Buck Mooneyhan @ 606-1821.


Show your membership card and receive 10% discounts on non-sale merchandise at Adventure Carolina, The Backpacker, The Nantahala Outdoor Center, and The River Runner. Bike to Nature also gives a 10% discount on merchandise other than bikes.



Join us for an overnight canoe/camping trip on the Edisto River March 8 and March 9. We will plan to camp on the Edisto Saturday night. All gear will have to be carried in the boats. The put-in is Whetstone Crossroads (where Highway 21 crosses the Edisto) in Bamberg County and we will take out at Colleton State Park near Canadys in Colleton County. If you would like to see a topographic map of the trip, go to Colleton State Park is just below the ash pond in the southeastern quadrant of this map. For maps and other information look at (1), (2) and (3)


Dave and Dianne Mullis are planning to lead a trip on the Lumber River in North Carolina over the April 1 weekend. The plan is to put in where the Route 74 Bridge crosses the Lumber River near Boardman, North Carolina and camp overnight at Lumber River State Park. This is a three to four hour float. Those that wish will be able to paddle on to Fair Bluff on Sunday which is a four to five hour float. Check out for more information about the Lumber River. The trip will be limited to ten boats. Sign up sheets will be available at the Club meeting in February or contact Dave at . Look at for a map of the river route. See for additional information.


Trip participation requires a signed release. Participants must contact the trip leader or sign up at a regularly scheduled meeting. Participants are required to know their abilities and make their own decisions with regard to the trips taken. These are not "guided" or "outfitted" trips. Participants must be properly equipped for the trip chosen. PFD’s must be worn on all trips. On whitewater trips, participants must furnish properly outfitted (with flotation) whitewater craft and helmets must be worn. Children under 18 must be accompanied by a parent at all times unless the trip leader makes an exception in the leader’s sole discretion.


Unless I have mistyped them, the Internet addresses between the should work if you type the bracketed material into your browser window. .


On December 11, 1999, a group of us went to Sparkleberry Swamp, near Lake Marion. The water was low but we had a good time. It is a very easy cypress swamp to get lost in. The water was low. We put in at Sparkleberry Landing which is off of Highway 51 in Sumter County. The turn to the landing is a right turn on a dirt road if you are heading south on Road 51. The turn is about 4.5 miles south of the junction of Road 51 and Road 261, approximately 2.5 miles south of Poinsett Park. There is a boat landing and good parking. The stage was 74.08 for the Santee River at Trezesvants Landing Near Fort Motte at 10:00 on December 11. Go to this site for the gauging station. This gauge is on the other side of the Santee River in Calhoun County above Sparkleberry Landing. The water was, in my opinion, about the minimum water level for a pleasant trip. Though we did not see any gators, the largest alligator recorded in South Carolina was 13 feet, 1 inch. A poacher killed it more than a decade ago in Sparkleberry Swamp. The mounted remains of this animal are now on display at the S.C. State Museum in Columbia. See See for a map.

The trip to Lake Marion on September 25, 1999, was a good trip on a hot, bright day. We put in at the Santee Indian Mound/Fort Watson location in the Santee National Wildlife Refuge. Kyle led the trip north up Lake Marion and into Cantey Bay. We stopped to eat lunch on a sandy beach in Cantey Bay. After lunch, we finished a circumnavigation of Persanti Island and then back to the starting point. Birdlife was plentiful. In particular, we saw a large number of White Ibis feeding in the cypress swamps. The kids on the trip, Sara Hunter and Kelsy Altman, had a great time playing with the kayaks on this protected water. We spent the night at Santee State Park and ate dinner at Duke’s Barbecue in Elloree. It was a clear, beautiful night with Mars prominent in the sky. Go to for a map.


The Palmetto Paddler is a publication of The Palmetto Paddlers, Inc. Views and opinions expressed in articles and editorials are those of the writer and do not necessarily represent the official views and policies of the Palmetto Paddlers, Inc. The Palmetto Paddler is not copyrighted, and all material published herein and not individually designated as copyrighted may freely be copied, reprinted, republished or otherwise disseminated to any other paddling organization. Credit is appreciated. CAUTION: Paddling is dangerous and rivers vary on every trip. You are responsible for your own trip decisions. Trip summaries are for your convenience and cannot be relied upon to be accurate on any given day or for purposes of determining safety on a river.


TO PLACE AN AD: Classified Ads are free to members of the Palmetto Paddlers in good standing. Send or e-mail typed ads to the Newsletter editor. NO-PHONED-IN ADS. All ads will be run for two issues unless otherwise requested. Neither the Newsletter editor nor the Palmetto Paddlers, Inc. is responsible for any errors in the ads or for the accuracy of any of the information in the ads.


This site, is a great, free site for USGS topographic maps. They have every map of the United States except Alaska. They also have a lenient use policy as long as you do not modify or sell the maps commercially. See their site for details. You can locate a place location, which will be in the center of the map window, either by a place name search or by specifying latitude and longitude. The database is seamless as all of the quads are stitched together by their process. Another good map site is SCDNR’s GIS. You can download all quads for South Carolina in tif format. The quads run about 14 megs and the resolution is great. You have to register but the use is free. These images can be edited with most image editing software. Go to If you have the software, they also have a lot of state GIS data for free download. The map on the back page of this Newsletter is the Capers Inlet Quadrangle downloaded from the DNR site and printed to one page. This is the full quadrangle.


Clean-Up February 26, 2000, at 10:00

The Palmetto Paddlers has adopted the "Radio Towers" landing (also known as "Gardendale" or the "SCE&G Throw In") in West Columbia. From the Circle K/ 76 station at the Bush River Rd. exit from I-20 go .8 miles out Bush River Rd. away from Columbia to Garden Valley Lane (SC-32-938), turn left, go .3 miles, passing the railroad tracks and the Gardendale Swim and Racquet Club, until the road makes a 90 degree right turn. You will see the SCE&G sign for the landing on the left just after this bend in the road. The Adopt-a-Landing Program is housed in SC DNR's Land, Water and Conservation Division as part of its River Conservation Program. Cleanups are in February, June which is American Rivers Month, and September as part of Beach Sweep/River Sweep. SC DNR, in recognition of involvement in the program, will erect a sign at the landing with Palmetto Paddlers’ name. Thanks to Robin and Dianne for doing the paperwork. If anyone is interested in coordinating the clean-up activities, please contact Robin. We will do a cleanup on February 26. Please meet at the landing at 10:00. Bring your boats and we will float the Saluda afterwards. For a map of the Lower Saluda showing this landing and the river rapids, go to Please pick up some trash every time you visit this landing so we can keep it clean.


  1. Chattooga River and Sumter National Forest Plans. You may want to get on the mailing list for the planning for the Sumter National Forest. Go to and select "REVISIONS" for the planning information and request to be put on the mailing list. The Sumter National Forest plan impacts the Chattooga, Turkey Creek, Stevens Creek, the Tyger, and the Enoree Rivers. Also consider joining the Chattooga River Private Boaters Association at
  2. Mercury Soup. For a sad description of how LAIDLAW ENVIRONMENTAL SERVICES (TOC), INC. (AKA Safety-Kleen (Roebuck), Inc.) has treated the North Tyger River, check out the United States Supreme Court decision FRIENDS OF THE EARTH, INC., et al. v. LAIDLAW ENVIRONMENTAL SERVICES (TOC), INC., No. 98—822. Argued October 12, 1999–Decided January 12, 2000.
  3. Daniel Island, Charleston Harbor. For the South Carolina Ports Authority’s spin on the development of Daniel Island, go to The environmental impact statement is available at the Army Corps. Of Engineers website at . An idea of the scale of this project is in the Executive Summary. It describes the project as requiring 7,000 additional feet of wharf on the Cooper River, 5,000 additional feet on the Wando, requiring dredging and disposal of 3 million cubic yards of material, 660 acres of lighted, paved area on Daniel Island, 2.4 miles of four lane road access with a new bridge, 13 miles of new railroad with new trestles (9,600 feet will be in the Francis Marion National Forest), and so on. The purpose is to accommodate "Post Panamax" ships which can be 1,140 feet long and 156 feet wide. The expansion is expected to generate 25,000 to 30,000 (not a typo) additional truck trips to the Port per day. Let your feelings be known.
  4. The Outfitter’s Policy Act of 1999. If you are concerned about how outfitting on the public lands will be handled in the future unless the public speaks out, read the proposed Outfitter’s Policy Act of 1999 at The Act was introduced in the United States Senate on November 18, 1999, by Senator Larry E. Craig. Problems with this bill are (1) the lack of provisions for public input into the selection and retention of outfitters, (2) the requirement that only designated outfitters may guide trips on federal lands, (3) the renewal of permits and transfer of permits on a non-competitive basis, (4) the permits are automatically transferable to heirs, and (5) the lack of safeguards to prevent politically strong and well financed outfitting interests from usurping use allocations over time at the expense of non-outfitted users. The mailing addresses for all United States senators are available on the web at and the information for United States representatives is available at .


To increase efficiency for communicating information to club members, Palmetto Paddlers has set up these internet resources. We need to be able to communicate meeting programs, trip plans, and schedule changes quickly and efficiently. Given the nature of what we do, plans are always changing because of the weather and the water. The Club has a web site, courtesy of The State newspaper. The State is hosting free web space for non-profit corporations. The Club’s page is at We will try to keep trip plans and schedules up to date on this site. There is also a free email box hosted by The address is This mailbox will give the members one location to contact the club officers. For a more general means to communicate, a list-serve for The Palmetto Paddlers has been established at OneList. If you are not familiar with a list-serve, it is basically a mailing list of people that have registered with the list-serve. Any member will be able to post a message to the list-serve, which will be e-mailed to other members. This could be a good way of communicating trip plans, meeting information, changes in plans, and other information of interest to the membership. It should be particularly good for last minute changes. To subscribe, go to

Lower Saluda River Advisory Council

Submitted by Mandy Manuel

The River Alliance is currently in the process of implementing the 12-mile long Three Rivers Greenway project which will encompass three miles of the Lower Saluda. The Three Rivers Greenway will extend across the Broad River from the existing Columbia Canal Park to the north bank of the Saluda at the Riverbanks Zoo. It will run three miles up to the I-26 bridge where it will cross the Saluda River and terminate in W.Cola. The LSRAC has met twice in recent months to discuss the merits of conducting a charette (a community planning and design process) . The purpose of the charette is to explore and define the potential for a Lower Saluda Greenway to be an extension of the current River Alliance plan. The LSRAC proposes to conduct a three-day charette on April 4-6, 2000. The charette will be facilitated by the SC Design Arts Partnership which will assemble a planning and design team to produce a report of the outcomes. Participants in the charette will be landowners, representatives of local government, community interest organizations and river users. Approximately 40 - 50 people will be invited to participate, including Palmetto Paddlers. Much of the data is based on input from the previous "dream sessions" and also from the existing Lower Saluda River Corridor Plan. The charette is meant to explore how to implement many of the ideas from those sessions. A copy of the draft proposal is available. Please email me at and I will forward the document.

Congaree Creek Heritage Committee, Stewardship Committee

Submitted by Mandy Manuel

The parking area at the put-in on HWY 321 is now open. The information kiosk has been built and information and maps are now being compiled. The take-out area off of Saxe Gotha Drive (off of I-277) is also open, however, you still need a key to open the gate. The key is available from Chris Judge at DNR 734-3753. Work is continuing on securing funding to pave these areas. Periodic work days are being held. These will be announced at Club meetings, or in mailings. Or contact John Rood @ 734-3916. Mike Dawson of the River Alliance spoke at the last meeting on the progress of the Three Rivers Greenway. As you may know, there is a section of Greenway Trail open along the Congaree River in Olympia. This section has parking, a bathroom, and a marked trail. On a recent Sunday afternoon, I called owls (and this just below the Gervais Street Bridge)! If you haven't seen this section of trail, please try to get down there. It will give you a good idea of what some of the remaining trails will be like. The River Alliance is successfully securing funding and is ready to begin construction on another section of trail on the Cayce side of the river. Please email me at if you would like more information.

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