I traced a fluorescent dye going down the river from the Chattahoochee Spring, testing the temperature, pH levels, and conductivity. Conductivity tells you a lot about the dissolved minerals in the water. It shows if something is being added in the water. I saw some pristine water at the Chattahoochee Spring. As soon as you get into the suburbs of Atlanta, there’s a steady increase in conductivity, indicating the runoff of minerals, most likely fertilizer from lawns.Fuller's blog covers some of the practicalities of moving himself and his supplies up and down undeveloped stretches of river, such as this account from the upstream portion of his trip:
Upriver of GA 372, I encountered unpaddleable rapid that was so deep and fast that it was impossible to wade, and the banks were too steep to walk and line the boat up. In fact, the bank was too steep to stand and unload the boat, so I pulled myself up the bank with the aid of exposed roots and vines, and then pulled the loaded boat up the bank. That took every bit of strength that I had, but I got it done. Unlike an earlier portage, the growth at the top of the bank was too thick to allow easy maneuvering, so I unloaded the boat and slid it along the face of the bank, keeping it from sliding back into the water with the support of trees growing along the bank. The whole portage was no more than 80′ to 100′, but it was a challenge.Wikipedia links for the Chattahoochee River and Etowah River. See also the American Whitewater River Database entries for Georgia for descriptions and photos of the rivers and their rapids, such as this description of how part of the Etowah flows through an abandoned mining tunnel (and some people run the tunnel in their boats).
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