As Brian Wheat, our New River Keeper, has said, we must find a way to
stop littering our precious waters. Before he became The New River
Keeper he accompanied us on these very same waters with his motor boat.
We unloaded our trash onto his boat. This was a very efficient way to clean
up Northeast Creek compared to what we did today.
Brian appeared before the Jacksonville City Council and asked that our
litter laws be enforced. We second that motion! Jacksonville also needs
to find out how and where all this litter is getting into Scales Creek
above, upstream of, Rte 24 and Camp Lejeune leaders need to do the same on that small
unnamed creek which originates on Camp Lejeune and empties into Northeast
We met at 9:00 AM at the main gate to Camp Lejeune. We were about # 10
in line to get day passes. It went pretty fast. We all then went to the
Northeast Creek Park and unloaded our boats at the ramp.
We then drove to Scales Creek access. To do this you go to Tarawa
Terrace ll Gate on Rte 24 which is opposite the end of Western Blvd.
Turn right on Bougainville Road, turn left on Camp Knox Road, and right
on Florence Road. Take your first left after you cross Scales Creek
bridge and left again into the parking lot. Go through the parking lot
to Scales Creek where you will see Dock SM184. This is an excellent access
for canoes a kayaks off the grass. There is no ramp.
We left our cars there and then returned to Northeast Creek Park in our shuttle vehicle and
launched our boats about 10:15.
By the time we got to Rte 24 bridge we were loaded with trash. Some kind
souls had been picking up trash on Rte 24 and left black trash bags at
the N/W shoulder. We added two orange trash bags, 1 tire, ( there were
several more which we simply could not handle), and a large plastic
chaise lounge which Jim Niedermeyer towed in the water behind his canoe,
and two five gallon buckets.
Plastic ice bags were numerous. They fill with sand and they get wrapped
around brush. They are very difficult to pick up and they also make an
ugly sight to see thus spoiling the beauty of our river. Please Mr. Fisherman
do not throw them overboard in the future.
2007-09-19 Northeast Creek to Scales Creek, Camp Lejeune, NC 001.jpg,(see below).
That is Jim Nediermeyer with this collection of trash. Pam Watkins, we presume
your NCDOT folks will be picking up this trash in Litter Sweep Fall
Roadside Cleanup, Sept 15-29, 2007 as proclaimed by our Governor.
We had a steady N/E breeze behind us and we arrived at Tarawa Terrace
Boat Ramp at lunch time. We ate in the shade of the woods at the ramp.
Again we had to unload our trash here. That is Jim Morris of Morehead
City on the left and Jim Niedermeyer of Hubert, center, and Jack Cleaves
of Cedar Point right.
2007-09-19 Northeast Creek to Scales Creek, Camp Lejeune, NC 002.jpg, (see below). We
are asking Camp Lejeune folks to pick this up.
After we rounded the point on Northeast Creek opposite the golf course we came upon a small creek (unnamed ?). This is the second time we have paddled up this creek Each
time we have found it loaded with trash. We had to quit. We were loaded
again. This small creek runs under Boy Scout Camp Road, Guam Dr., Tarawa
Terrace and maybe Bougainville Dr.
We cannot understand how this large volume of trash is getting into this small
creek. It must be being dumped off the bridges. High water has dispersed
it into the adjacent woods. It is ugly indeed. By copy of this e-mail we
are asking Lt. Craig to see if they cannot get this littering stopped
and also pick up our trash left at Tarawa Terrace ramp and at this
Scales Creek access at this lovely little park with picnic tables. .
We also left our trash by the trash cans at this nice little park which
makes an ideal canoe and kayak launching place. The trash cans were
2007-09-19 Northeast Creek to Scales Creek, Camp Lejeune, NC 003.jpg, (see below).
This is our trash left at Scales Creek We observed a picnic table with
benches on the shore as we entered Scales Creek. It is painted the same
color as Dock SM184. So, we presume high water picked it up and floated
it down the river. It will take a motor boat to get this back.
Connie Morris helped us with the shuttle and also took some pictures. We
are asking her to send them to Ed Gruca and Ed will combine them with
these and we will then get all on our web site.
We had a great day on the water. We will return and pick up where we
left off and take out at Camp Johnson Ramp next time. We hope all this
will be counted toward our Big Sweep efforts this year and our Governor’s Road
Clean Up as this trash is in great measure thrown into the rivers at the bridges
instead of disposing of it properly according to our laws.
001 at Rte 24 bridge.
002 at Tarawa Terrace Boat Ramp
003 at Scales Creek dock SM184
I know that is Jim Niedermeyer because of the white hat. Connie caught him as he entered Scales
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That is Jack Cleaves in his long beautiful hand made kayak. That white dot is Jim again.
This picture was taken by Connie Morris who came to reclaim her husband, Jim after a day of shopping
in Jacksonville. That is Elmer Eddy coming up Scales Creek from the Northeast Creek.
This is all of us as we approached SM184 Dock on Scales Creek. Those little patches of gray in
the back ground are Northeast Creek.
Another shot of The Stewards of The White Oak River Basin after an unusually hard day of paddling
due entirely to the large volume of trash and litter illegally dumped and/or disposed of into our waterways.
Folks, it is illegal to litter like this!
This is close up of our trash loaded canoes. This is so unnecessary! Notice the spring marks on the
bottom of the cushion of the (settee?). The very heavy rest of it is still in the river. We cold not
This is the third time today our canoes were loaded like this. We ran out of bags to hold it.
Here comes Jack Cleaves. He has to unload his trash on us. He is also helping North Carolina Coastal
Federation collecting water samples in the White Oak River Watershed to find out what is the source
of storm water run off polluting the White Oak River.
In the old days the White Oak had large, luscious oysters in the area they are sampling. Today these
waters are closed for human consumption.
This is about one third of today’s haul. We cleaned this whole area thoroughly a few years back. This
dumping and littering must be stopped. Vigorous enforcement of our anti littering laws apparently
is the only thing that will stop it. It is up to our leaders to see that this is done.
This is Jim Morris loading his canoe. He is a big strong guy, but that canoe he made is only a little
over 30 pounds. That is Florence Road Bridge over Scales Creek in the back ground.
Here is my picture of Connie with Jim, and Jack Cleaves and Jim Niedermeyer and our trash from
Tarawa Terrace to here. Thanks Connie for helping us with the shuttle and taking these great pictures.
A plea to all leaders of our society: Please enforce our anti-litter laws now! Arrest litterers! Fine them or make them do Community Service picking up litter. Then publish it widely so all will know. Littering is illegal. Only then will it come to a stop.
We volunteers cannot keep going back to the same place to pick up what others are constantly and deliberately doing! The Izaak Walton League has been doing this for 20 years on Route 58. Today the volume is worse than ever! We have got to stop this.
Elmer Eddy, The White Oak River Trashman
Stewards of The White Oak River Basin
101 River Reach Drive West,
Swansboro, NC. 28584
910-389-4588 e-mail: email@example.com
Please visit our website: http://www.whiteoakstewards.org/
“If no one litters, there will be no litter!”