Thursday, December 10, 2009

Mitchell Bridge River Access is Complete!

Never again will you have to lug your canoe or kayak up through the briars, praying that you don't get run over by a car at the top! Those days are over thanks to Henry County Parks & Recreation's new addition of a river access on the Smith River at Mitchell Road Bridge in Axton.

The new access is located river left upstream of the bridge and has ample parking for vehicles and trailers. A wider ramp at the river's edge will allow multiple canoes/kayaks to pull up or launch at the same time. The access is already getting rave reviews from paddlers who have tried it out.

Henry County Public Service Authority has worked for several weeks to install the ramp and parking lot. Recently inmates from Patrick Henry Correctional Unit #28 came out to help clear the area of debris and brush to make way for new plantings of dogwoods, sycamores, and low bushes that will protect the river from runoff. Today, C.D. Prillaman with Prillaman Landscape Dimensions, Inc. of Ridgeway, will be planting those trees and shrubs to enhance the area.

Many of you also helped to make this happen. Everyone who came out to support the Dan River Basin Association at our first ever Smith River Film Festival in September and the replay of the films at Philpott Lake in November helped to fund this project. More than $1,000 was raised by river supporters like YOU!

Thank you for your support and be sure to come out and visit the access soon. From Hwy 220 N. in Ridgeway, turn right onto Old Sand Road, take a left onto Eggleston Falls road and follow it until it ends at Mitchell Road. Turn left onto Mitchell Road, the access is approximately 2 miles away on your left.

Photos by Brian Williams

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