Monday, May 30, 2022

Get to Know Catawba Riverkeeper and The Boathouse

How much do you know about the Catawba Riverkeeper Foundation? 

A local, community-based group founded in 1997 that protects, preserves and restores the 226 miles of the Catawba River basin, which permeates 26 counties in our region, the Catawba Riverkeeper Foundation offers education, advocacy, monitoring, reporting and engagement to protect this valuable natural resource from threats such as development and poor water management. The organization's vision: To sustain plentiful clean water for generations to come. 

As if that important work isn't cool enough, the Catawba Riverkeeper Foundation also offers a ton of recreational opportunities, which you should definitely check out, if you haven't already. 

Their activity hub is The Boathouse, located in McAdenville, NC, along the banks of the South Fork River (the largest tributary of the Catawba), about 20 minutes west of uptown. Here, you can rent a kayak (single or tandem), canoe or standup paddleboard for a flatwater outing. You can sign up for several guided tour options. And, if you're not super confident on the water, you can register for private or group lessons.

When you're finished exploring, get a drink, snack and gear and apparel at The Boathouse. 

Boathouse hours are Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. All rentals are walk-up only Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. No reservations are necessary. Rental fees include the boat, paddle, safety vest, and instruction.

The Riverkeeper also hosts a number of activities and events throughout the season. Most offerings are good for most ages and abilities, but check the website for details.

If you really want to make a day of it, consider taking a paddle, then hiking along the South Fork River Trail (in the woods, out-and-back, 2 miles one-way) or the McAdenville Greenway (flat, paved, out-and-back, 0.8 miles one way). Both make for a pleasant stroll. 

There's no better way to beat the summertime heat than finding things to do on and around the water. The Catawba Riverkeeper Foundation makes it easy to do so -- both by protecting our local waterways and making them accessible with lots of fun things to do!

How to get there:
The Boathouse is located at 115 Willow Dr, McAdenville, NC 28101. This is also the trial head for the South Fork River Trail. During weekend business hours, you can also launch from the 501 Lakeview Dr., McAdenville, just a couple minutes' drive from The Boathouse. This is also where you'll find the paved McAdenville Greenway. 

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