Imagine driving a few miles out of town to a wildlife management area. You pull up to the parking area near a trailhead and head out. In a matter of moments, you hear the sound of falling water, and you feel the stress of the day melt away. What is the value of a river to you? As you sit in a pristine wilderness with trees, a rushing creek, and a cascading waterfall surrounding you, what is the value of a river to you?
Rivers are a unique environment. Based on your relationship with the river or where you are on the river, your perspective of that river and its impact on you will change. Have you ever though about that? The Chattahoochee River is prominent and important river throughout Georgia, but wherever you are your view of the river may change.
Imagine instead wading out into a creek to monitor the quality of the river. How would you do that? Did you know sampling for macroinvertabrates is a great way to gauge the health of the river. Some of these critters can only live in clean, clear water. Others thrive in polluted waters. Depending on what you find and the diversity of life, you can determine the health of the stream. Why is a clean stream important? What is the value of a river to you?
As we continue this journey down the Chattahoochee River, different perspectives on the river will be uncovered. I challenge you to think about what the river means to you.
Creeks to Coast Day 1, July 9, 2014, Horse Trough Falls and Duke’s Creek