The Haw River Paddler


As we name, we perceive; as we perceive, we value; and as we value, we honor and protect. Words have power. Languages connected to place can help us respect local knowledge, investigate systems of knowing and seeing, approach nature and culture with a ground-level view. They can help us ask and answer the tough questions about how humans and nonhumans can live together in a tolerant and dignified way. They can help us extend our sense of community, what we hold ourselves responsible for, what we must do to live right and well.” Nancy Lord


The Next Generation of River Champions: Where Will They Come From?

One of the best ways you can help rivers is to introduce a child to the magic of the outdoors. If we want a future of clean water and healthy rivers, we need to create the next generation of river champions. And that begins with you. So, spend some time with a child on the river. Have fun and create special memories together. Because the best way to ensure a future of healthy rivers is to raise children who love rivers. Here are three ways to help kids discover rivers:

  1. Explore. You don’t have to plan a big wilderness adventure. In fact, the best trips are often simple walks along a neighborhood stream. Riverbanks are natural playgrounds and have everything a child needs to move and play at his or her own pace: balancing on logs, splashing in puddles, finding pretty stones, or searching for wildlife.
  2. Tell a story. Where does the stream begin? What is that bug doing? Where is that fish going? Rivers provide great raw material for making up stories that spark a child’s imagination and curiosity. You can also visit your local library for children’s books about nature and rivers.
  3. Enjoy the moment. We all need beauty, something bigger than ourselves that captures our hearts and minds. Kids and adults alike need places where our spirits are free to soar. Rivers give us all of this. Sometimes just sitting together and watching the light dance on the water is enough.

taken from the Summer 2014 American Rivers newsletter


25th. Annual Haw River Assembly Learning Celebration

This year is the 25th. anniversary of the Haw River Assembly’s Learning Celebration. It all started back in 1990 in Bynum, NC with Louise Kessel, the Haw River Assembly and some amazing Bynum folks. Volunteers camped out on the old mill property and each day took visiting 4th. graders from area schools down to the river along the trail on Duke Forest land for adventures in learning about the river, wildlife and people of the watershed. Now, 25 years later, the Assembly is still holding this wonderful field trip, but the land is part of the Lower Haw River State Natural Area. The 3 weeks of adventure on the river will start September 20 in Bynum then moves upriver for a week in Saxapahaw and a final week north of Greensboro, ending October 10.

The Assembly needs all the help it can get. They will be setting up again at the Lower Haw River State Natural Area. Volunteers are needed to help with EVERYTHING – including field camp set-up and breakdowns, trucks to help move each week and cooks. They need river lovers, musicians and puppeteers and most of all folks who would love to be a guide for delightful children along the banks of the Haw River. They will teach you what you need to know about water quality, water critters, wildlife and more. For those who love camping, you can join them in a tent for the whole week.

Everything you need to know about helping is on their website ( or you can call their program coordinator, Tracy DeVoe, at 919/542-5790 or send her an e-mail message at


Leaves Are Turning. Almost Time for Whitewater Instruction

When the leaves start changing colors in the fall there usually is a corresponding increase in the amount of rain we receive in the Piedmont. Obviously, more rain means more water in our rivers which gives us a better opportunity to offer whitewater paddling instruction.

As we see the Haw River beginning to come up again, we will update our calendar of whitewater courses. Until then, if you would like more information or have questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at or 336/260-6465.

Joe Overlooking Cook Inlet at Clam Gulch