May 20, 2017, Canoe Trip on Flint River, Shoals Spider Lilies, Talbot & Upson Counties
Description: The purpose of this upstream paddle on the Flint River will be to get up close and personal with the shoals spiderlily, or Cahaba lily, Hymenocallis coronaria. At normal water levels, the lilies are difficult to reach by wading into the river, so we are going to paddle right into the heart of a very large population of this lovely wildflower. We should also see American Water-willow, Justicia americana flowering among the hundreds of shoals lilies. Southern catalpa, Catalpa bignonioides, which has remarkably showy flowers, may also be in flower along the banks of the river. Because we are only paddling less than a mile upstream, we’ll have plenty of time to spend mingling with the lilies. This trip will be an excellent opportunity to photograph the shoal lilies.
Special Considerations: The nearest outfitter, The Flint River Outdoor Center, does not normally shuttle canoes or kayaks to this site, so you must bring your own boat, or make arrangements with someone who has space in a boat.
Directions: From Thomaston, take US 19 south for about 3.5 miles. Turn right onto Indian Trail Road. At the first stop sign, stay to the right. Follow Indian Trail Rd. to Pobiddy Rd. and turn left onto Pobiddy. Stay on Pobiddy Rd. for several miles. You will cross the Flint River on a new bridge and head uphill. After about 3 miles, turn right onto Bunkham Rd (there is a sign for Big Lazer Creek WMA at the intersection). Drive until you see the DNR Check Station on the left. After everyone gathers at the Check Station, we will drive to the actual canoe ramp.
Meet: 10:00, Big Lazer Creek WMA Check Station
Difficulty: Because we will be paddling upstream, participants must be in fair physical condition. We’ll only paddle less than a mile on the way to the shoals lilies, but it will seem like 2 or 3 miles. Once among the lilies, you can sunbathe on the rocks, or wade to your heart’s content, or paddle farther into the shoals. After that, it is all downstream! Expect to get your feet wet and probably muddy.
Bring: Lunch, water, camera, sense of adventure. Oh, and bring a boat.
Contact: Hal Massie (478-957-6095), cell reception may be poor on morning of trip.