2008-03-18 Northwest Prong to Southwest Prong of Newport River, Carteret County, NC

This is the continuation of our paddle from Cypress Drain. A short paddle of about 3 miles.

We paddled down from the confluence of Cypress Drain and Northwest Prong and went

under the bridge on #1124 where we left our shuttle vehicles and continued on to the

Southwest Prong which was just below the beaver dam we went over last week. Then

we paddled back upstream and had lunch under 1124.

Here is the confluence of the Northwest and Southwest Prongs of the Newport River.

Jim an Connie with Ed Gruca of Emerald Isle Joanne above and Cleo below.


Jim and Connie disappearing into the Croatan National Forest.

Here comes Paddle! He went with us all the way. He added a lot to our enjoyment of this day on the

water. He was good company. A real scout.

Here we are at the confluence with the Southwest Prong.

Preparing to paddle back upstream. Paddle was not to be left behind.

We met Cleo coming downstream with his trash collection featuring a pet house.
Paddle eyes Joanne’s boat but she shooed him away.
Paddle keeps up with Elmer and Jim.
Jim has peanut butter and jelly. Elmer is not sharing this time. Jim offers some carrots.
Ed has meatloaf! Oh boy! Meat loaf!
Jim, Elmer, Jim and Connie, Cleo and Ed and there is the Leprechaun!

Thanks for finding him again, Ed, and thanks for the wonderful pictures.

Our days haul of trash is in front. The trash was very heavy at the bridge,#1124 highway being, Nine
Foot Road.

It is obvious some people are making this bridge crossing their personal trash disposal convenience
center. We are asking NCDOT to erect their “Do NOt Litter” signs on both sides of this bridge. We
hope this will stop this illegal dumping here.

We have also asked them to pick up this trash which we had to leave right where you see it.

Paddle rides shotgun back to the put in. He grabbed the front seat and we could not move him. Jim
and Cleo had to sit in the back. We are going to miss Paddle or Bowser, whatever his name is. He was
a lot of fun and good company.
Dog pens at the hunting camp near Camp Bryan.

We went looking for Slocum Creek. Looks like we could paddle it all the way to Ellis Lake if it were cleared.
It is clear and open at the gate to Camp Bryant but the gate was locked. Maybe Craven County can get a grant to open it
for paddling. It sure would make a nice Canoe Trail.

All in all it was a most enjoyable day on the water. We recommend it highly for a short afternoon paddle after work. Elmer

Elmer Eddy

Elmer, 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:
Please visit our website: http://www.whiteoakstewards.org/
“If no one litters, there will be no litter!”


2008-03-18 Cypress Drain and Northwest Prong of the Newport River, Carteret County. NC

The most exciting paddle East of Raleigh! With the right water level. It is narrow and fast

and gives us something a little different than flat water. Especially when you have Bowser

as our escort and guide.

Paul Ferguson’s book, “Paddling Eastern North Carolina, 2nd Expanded Edition” on page 483

indicates 50 inches below the bottom of the concrete bridge as the minimum for paddling.

We had 53 inches. It would have been nicer with that extra 3 inches but we got through fine
with a little bumping here and there. It was well worth it. As soon as we joined with Northwest
Prong we had plenty of water.

Put in water level at the bridge was 53 inches from water to bottom of bridge.We put in
at the bridge over Cypress Drain on Lake road in Carteret County #1125. The first half
mile on Cypress Drain went very quickly with the fast water. This creek was cleared of
blow downs and blockages and is a problem free paddle at this water level. We did bump
little in Cypress Drain only but it is a very short distance of .5 tenths of a mile.
The forest was green in spite of the absence of leaves. This was the day after St Patrick’s day!
Do you see the four leaf clover?
Jim Morris and Connie of Morehead City off into the wilderness on the Northwest Prong.

Cleo Smith of Raleigh and Joanne Somerday of New Bern

Fortunately the river went around this.
Thanks to Carteret County for making this navigable again.
And thanks again.
Joanne is really enjoying this paddle.
So are Jim Niedermeyer of Hubert and Elmer Eddy of Swansboro

Here is Cleo Smith of Raleigh who came all the way down here to paddle this creek which has been
blocked and is now cleared to make it possible.

Ziggsagging through the forest on a twisting, winding stream. It’s wonderful.

Here is another shot of Cleo. World wide paddler!

This takes some navigating.

A huge root ball but the tree did not come down all the way. As the root ball gets lighter and lighter
due to weathering the weight of the tree and trunk, aided by the wind and rain, will bring it down
across the stream.
An old cut and two new cuts.
Our water trail through the Croatan Forest. Very interesting and full of surprises around every turn.

Pretty, isn’t it!

Some heavy cutting.
Our mascot for this paddle was a large dog that met us at the put in and followed us down the creek.
Ed named him Paddle. Elmer named him Bowser.

You can almost hear the water! Rapids in Eastern North Carolina!
Joanne shooting the rapids.

We caught up with Elmer at the confluence with the Northwest Prong.
The rest of the paddle is on another page. Do you see the Leprechaun? Ed: Where did he go?

Elmer Eddy
Elmer, 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:

Please visit our website: http://www.whiteoakstewards.org/
“If no one litters, there will be no litter!”


2008-03-18, Cypress Drain and Northwest Prong of the Newprt River

A change of plans:

Due to easterly winds on Tuesday we will not be paddling from Newport to Morehead City.

Instead we will meet at 9:30 on Lake Road #1125 at the bridge over Cypress Drain.

Cypress Drain joins the Northwest Prong of the Newport River in .5 tenths of a mile. We will paddle down to the confluence of the Northwest Prong and the Southwest Prong to become the Newport River. This is 2.6 miles.

We will turn around here and paddle back upstream to Nine Foot Road, # 1124, where we will have left our shuttle vehicles. This is .4 tenths of a mile.

All this has been cleared of fallen trees under a Grant obtained by Carteret County. We all thank you very much, Carteret County! This is an excellent Canoe Trail and something very different from other Coastal Plain rivers. It is unique.

This is a short fast paddle due to the gradient of the land here. About 1/2 of it could be classified as class one water depending on the water level at the time. According to Paul Ferguson’s
“Paddling Eastern North Carolina, Expanded 2nd Eddition”, on page 483, minimum water level for good paddling is 50 inches below the bottom of the Lake Road Bridge so bring your tape measure befo\eer you paddle it.

We will repeat the first section again taking out on Nine Foot Road. We hope to leave the river cleaned of all trash and litter.

Come and join us if you can and experience it for yourself. Elmer


2008-03-12 Newport River, Carteret County, NC Nine Mile Road to Newport Wildlife Ramp on Chatham Street

Topo map of paddle. This 6.3 miles. We launched our boats before 10:00.

We arrived at the Wildlife Ramp at 12:30. This trip was made possible

because Carteret County obtained a Grant to have the river cleared of fallen

trees which have been blocking the river to navigation.

Thank you Carteret County. We enjoyed an excellent and most enjoyable

trip today.


Access on Nine Mile road. We can use it as it is but it would be much

better and safer if NCDOT and Carteret County would get together

give us some off road parking. The present shoulder is narrow and the

traffic is heavy and goes by at 55 miles per hour! NCDOT is providing

accesses across the State. They need a Government Body to take over

and maintain it when it is done. Please do this, Carteret County. Access

Committee: Please take note.

Assembling for the group photo by Carteret County News Times photographer,
Dylan Ray on the bridge. Eren Tatargasi, was the author of an article published in
The News Times on March 14th. Eren is up front in my canoe on the left. Jim Morris
and his wife, Connie, are in the white canoe. Jim made that canoe himself. Gary
Scruggs, The Newport River Trashman is in the Wenonah. Thanks Gary for all you
have done on the Newport River working on your own and with the firm that cleared
the river of the blocking trees. You made our trip today a pleasurable excursion.

Beautiful is it not!

Gary Scruggs leading the way
Jim Morris and wife Connie in his brand new home built Kevlar canoe on its maiden voyage

The trees along this river form a shady canopy which is most welcome on a hot
summers day.
Eren and Elmer going over the beaver dam. Gary stood on shore and helped line
up the boats using his gaff hook. Rumor has it Cal Hansen went over in reverse.
The dam was not breached by us. It may have been the beavers and the heavy rains.
The breach was near the shore requiring a difficult sharp left turn to get into
the gap or risk a turnover. Thanks Gary for helping us over! A white water thrill!

John Klecker had a nice ride.

On down the river.

Camille all the way down from Chapel Hill.

The river makes a sharp turn to the right.

Caution: This awaits you at the confluence of Northwest and Southwest Prongs.
We had lunch under this two years ago.It survived the latest high winds. It will
come down some day.
Eren Tataragasi and Elmer

Our newest Steward(ess). No, she is not drinking it. It is a beer can she picked up!

Some leaves are already coming out.

Large cypress in the middle of the river
Is that the beaver lodge in the woods?

A child’s toy among our trash for the day.

Eren on the left, then Jim Niedermeyer of Hubert, Jim and Connie Morris of Morehead City
behind Elmer ,Gary Scruggs, he lives right here, Julia Miner form Araphoe on his right, Al
Morris from Smyrna and standing behind him, Dale Weston from Jacksonville, John Klecker
from New Bern and Cal Hansen from New Bern. This is about one hour above the
Wildlife Ramp.

Elmer proposes an extension to the planned paddle up Deep Creek. We had made
excellent time due to the cleared riv
er and nice current. It was just too beautiful a
day to stop this early.

An excellent little riverside get-a-way along the river.

Some ended their trip at the Wildife Ramp. Others went on and up Deep Creek as
far as time allowed. We did go under the low bridge over Mill Creek Road and up
a little past Little Deep Creek. Will have to explore both another day.

Thanks again Carteret County for making this most enjoyable paddle possible on
this lovely river. Elmer

Elmer Eddy

Elmer, 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:
Please visit our website: http://www.whiteoakstewards.org/
“If no one litters, there will be no litter!”

2008-03-12, Newport River from Nine Mile Road to Wildlife Ramp in Newport.

We had another great paddle today. Spring is busting out all over. The weather was perfect and we had 11 boats and 12 fine people participating who love our waterways and really enjoy and appreciate them.

We launched our canoes and kayaks at the bridge over the Southwest Prong of the Newport River on Nine Mile Road and paddled to the Wildlife Ramp on Chatham Street in Newport.

This was 6.3 miles. We arrived there at 12:30. After lunch we continued down the Newport River to the confluence of Deep Creek and paddled up it under the 101 bridge and upstream as time permitted. We returned to The Wildlife Ramp at our planned time to be off the water.

This abbreviated report of this trip is intentional as we had two guests from the media with us. We want you all to hear and see their story first. We do not want to steal their thunder!

As soon as the weather, wind and tides are right we will continue down the Newport River to an access on Adam’s Cemetery land east of Lawton Point off Crab Point Loop Road off Country Club Road where it makes that abrupt 90 degree turn.

This access is all we have between Newport and Morehead City which is too long a stretch for us to paddle at any one time. It is on private land and has been used by the public for years. Unfortunately it is also being used as a dumping ground! It is a full scale DUMP!

It is an eyesore and a disgrace to Carteret County and Morehead City. We have tried for years to have it cleaned up to no avail. We hope we will be surprised and find it all gone when we get there next time.

We will paddle somewhere on a good weather day next week. Please join us if you can and have fun with us as we try to keep our waterways clean. Thanks, Elmer


2008-03-03 Trent River, Quaker Knoll to Tar Landing, in River Bend, NC.

River Bend is in Craven County but the other side of the river is still in
Jones County.

Another great day on the water! This picture by Joanne. We had enough
paddlers to pick up trash from both shorelines as we paddled. Red maples
are showing their color. Spring is springing! Dandelions are blooming.

Here are our boats ready to be launched at Quaker Knoll off Oak Grove Road above Pollocksville.

That is Jim Morris among the boats and that is Joanne Somerday who is always the very first in the water.

This was a great paddle. We all enjoyed it very much. The folks in New Bern and River Bend set up the shuttle for us. Thanks!

Tommy Moore opened the gate to his lodge on the Trent River for us again. To you upstate paddlers. Carolina Canoe Club and others, ‘

this section of the Trent River always has water. It is clear paddling all the way. And it is beautiful and about to get more so.

Jim Morris getting read to shove off. That is Joanne down by the water.

You see why Joanne is always first on the water!
There is the happy girl ready to go.
Photo by Joanne Somerday of part of group.
Another photo by Joanne from the water. No one tipped!
Here is the group photo with out Joanne Somerday of River Bend. L/R Jim Niedermeyer of Hubert, Ed Gruca of Emerald Isle,
Jim Stevens of New Bern, Tom Fineco of River Bend, Elmer Eddy of Swansboro, Dale Weston of Jacksonville, Julia Miner of
Arapahoe, Ken Court of Jacksonville, Jack Klecker of New Bern, David Sousa of New Bern, Jim Morris of Morehead City, Jack
Cleaves of Cedar Point, Jeanine Dunn of Jacksonville. Her husband, Jim took all the pictures. Thanks Jim and thanks
to Ed Gruca who prepared them for me to get them on the web.
This is the Lodge at Quaker Knoll. You upstate-rs, Carolina Canoe Club, and Lumber River members
and all can rent it. It sleeps a bunch. It is first class. You can do the whole Trent River from
here. Call Tommy at 252-670-3040. He might even deliver a meal for you too.

This is our put-in at the Lodge at Quaker Knoll.
We are almost ready to take off.
Who’s that? Dale I guess, before or after he stripped due to the warm weather.
Now we really are ready to take off.
Say goodbye to Quaker Knoll.

Dale Weston in a strainer retrieving trash!
Jim Morris in his home built canoe.

Here is the Route 17 bridge at Pollocksville. We also passed the old support stanchions for the old railroad bridge.
They were very interesting. It was a swing bridge.

David Sousa hasn’t paddled much lately. The head wind was too much for him. Jim and Elmer put a tow line on him
which kept him heading into the wind. He paddle too and we hardly knew he was there. David decided the next 7 miles
might be more than he could handle. Gentleman, Ken Court paddled back to Quaker Knoll and drove his car to Pollocksville
Wildlife Ramp and took David back to New Bern. He then put-in at Tar Landing and paddled upstream to meet us right after lunch.
Chivalry is not dead! Thanks, Ken.

This picture is just below Pollocksville. The river makes an abrupt turn just below Pollocksville and we had the wind at our back
Tar Landing which made for easy paddling.

This photo by Joanne. It is at the Pollocksville Wildlife ramp where we unloaded our trash.

We had several bags of trash even though we had paddled only about two miles.
Jeannine recovered a water bottle!

Jeannine is telling us about not being able to fly over the mountains due to the strong winds.
That is the reason why Jim and Jeannine are paddling with us today.
Lunch time in open woods on a bed of leaves. We did find a tick
at the take out! Warm weather must have brought them out!
Another view. We had sixteen paddlers.
All telling different stories.
Jim and Elmer grabbed back rests.
Cal Hansen of New Bern had a morning meeting. He put in at Tar Landing and paddled up
to meet us. Cal leads the Salt Water Adventure Paddle around Croatan National Forest every year.
This spring he is paddling the Suwanee River.

Here we are unloading at Tar Landing in River Bend. We paddled past some lovely homes with big
boats tied up out front.

That is Jim Niedermeyer and Ed Gruca. Jim has a very long extending crab net which is used to
retrieve trash without getting out of your canoe.

This is our load of trash today except for several bags we left at Pollocksville Wildlife Ramp.
We moved it up to the tar mack. Tom Fineco is asking the town of River Bend to remove it for us.
All in all this adds up to six pickup truck’s full of trash we have
removed from the Trent River from Chinquapin Chapel Bridge Road above Route 58 above
Trenton to Tar Landing in River Bend just above New Bern.

We are anxiously waiting for the upper reaches by Comfort and Pleasant Hill to be cleared of fallen
trees so we may paddle and clean them too.

We are supposed to be a civilized society. We must find a way to stop this trashing
of our roads and waterways. Everybody must stop rolling down our car windows and
discarding our unwanted items along our roads. And for those who are using our bridges
as their personal disposal convenience center we need to apprehend them and sentence
them to 100 hours of picking up trash along our highways.

Democracy does not give us the freedom to litter. You are violating the law when you litter!
And also when you leave loose trash in your open bodied pick up and let it blow out.

Please do not litter!

Elmer Eddy
Elmer, 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:
Please visit our website: http://www.whiteoakstewards.org/
“If no one litters, there will be no litter!”