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  #26  
Old 03-01-2017, 04:50 PM
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I'm afraid I'm not going to be able to make it the 11th Kyle a good friend is moving that weekend and I had previously promised to help. This is a real good thing you're doing and I was looking forward to meeting ya'll but a mans gotta keep his word. He's definitely gonna make it worth my while, I've got a feeling I'll be coming home with a like-new tiller plus change. He wont need it where he's going. I'll do some clean-up on Coopers Creek and Blue Ridge WMAs to make up for it.
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  #27  
Old 03-02-2017, 08:17 AM
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Great idea! Cannot be there but will do some clean up my next time out for sure. Hopefully this has a ripple effect and the people who read this and cant be there will be motivated to do their part next time they are in the public woods!
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  #28  
Old 03-02-2017, 09:43 AM
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I'll never understand people who litter. Anywhere. But especially on F.S./WMA roads and trails. What kind of people have the motivation to walk a couple of miles to see a beautiful waterfall yet cant carry their empty water bottles and beer cans back out with them? I see it all the time. Must not have had any raising.
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  #29  
Old 03-02-2017, 11:45 AM
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I am planning on attending. I should be able to stay until around 2PM.
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  #30  
Old 03-03-2017, 12:04 PM
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I always bring out some litter, especially used fishing line, when trout fishing on the Hooch. One time collected a 55 gallon trash bag full of trash from one campsite right below the Check Station. I also cannot understand why people will trash National Forest land.
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  #31  
Old 03-03-2017, 09:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 35 Whelen View Post
I always bring out some litter, especially used fishing line, when trout fishing on the Hooch. One time collected a 55 gallon trash bag full of trash from one campsite right below the Check Station. I also cannot understand why people will trash National Forest land.
Thanks for doing your part 35Whelen! Those campsites below the check station are now closed thanks to the trash dumpers. ALL of the sites. Each one now has a "no camping" sign as well as a "no dumping trash" signs. Its sad because I used to utilize all of those campsites quite a lot, and now the trash dumpers have ruined than not only for myself, but for all of us! Keep up the good worm my man! Even after this event, I'll still be doing some individual work days throughout the year because throughout the tourist season, we know a lot of this trash is going to reappear.
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  #32  
Old 03-05-2017, 08:52 AM
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I will never understand why people litter the same places they want to sleep and walk around in. I guess I'll just chalk it up to city folk mentality: that it's someone else's problem!

That being said, I'd love to help and will try to bring a few people with me. It's great stewardship, enough to make the boy scouts jealous.
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  #33  
Old 03-05-2017, 09:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tallchris83 View Post
I will never understand why people litter the same places they want to sleep and walk around in. I guess I'll just chalk it up to city folk mentality: that it's someone else's problem!
Unfortunately, it's not just city folk. I know plenty of folks around here that are just plain slobs in respect to stewardship.
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  #34  
Old 03-05-2017, 10:23 AM
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You're absolutely right on this. City folks are part of the problem, but they dont haul couches, chairs, appliances and heaps of old tires up here to dump. These special kind of people live nearby. Theres a road off Owltown that will make you sick to your stomach. Several truckloads of the above dumped along it. Some well-meaning but not very bright individual has spray-painted "PIGS" on the trees above it with arrows pointing to it, apparently not realizing that they were defacing the place as much as the dumpers. I'd like to clean it up, but much of it is below the road and would take several men to muscle up to the road.
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  #35  
Old 03-05-2017, 11:32 AM
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I will be back up there one day this week,might even make it on saturday too. We need to lead by example and Kyle and this bunch are doing just that. Any boy scouts will be welcome too.
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  #36  
Old 03-05-2017, 11:48 AM
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Default Clean up

Not a bear hunter but I have been fishing and camping up there since the mid seventies.

I am reffing soccer games Friday evening at East Hall and plan on going to DeSoto Falls to camp Friday night late. I will be at Raven Cliffs Saturday morning before 9 to help. I dont know the road and creek names like most of you guys so I might have to team up with a local.

I appreciate you putting this together Killer.
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  #37  
Old 03-06-2017, 11:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by futbolwest View Post
Not a bear hunter but I have been fishing and camping up there since the mid seventies.

I am reffing soccer games Friday evening at East Hall and plan on going to DeSoto Falls to camp Friday night late. I will be at Raven Cliffs Saturday morning before 9 to help. I dont know the road and creek names like most of you guys so I might have to team up with a local.

I appreciate you putting this together Killer.
futbolwest, glad to have you brother!! Look forward to meeting you man! Bear hunting is not a requirement, I just put it in this thread because I knew it'd be seen by a lot of locals and people who frequently use the WMA. Thank you so much for joining in!!

Fear not, you need not know the WMA inside and out! I've got maps labeled for everybody, and will designate individuals who are familiar with certain areas to lead convoys to the designated work areas. I will also be there to personally direct individuals, and will be leading a group as well. You'll be in good hands my friend!
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  #38  
Old 03-06-2017, 11:39 AM
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Default things to consider:

I heard back from Scott from DNR today. Aside from the general trash, I asked him if they had the capability to dump larger items that are there like mattresses, chairs, a 15' aluminum.....pole? (I swear to God, it looks like a sailboat mast!). He said we can put everything in or around the dumpster at Raven's Cliffs, and the people that dump it "Chattahoochee Mgmt. I believe) will take care of it. We are going to get a LOT of trash out of this deal. I am anticipating a significant amount. We will also get a lot of aluminum cans to be donated to the City of Cornelia Fire Dept.

As Saturday draws nigh, I'd like to make some points for all the volunteers to consider:

-Bring your waders, and wading staff or walking stick as you may be assigned to work areas that require you to get in and cross or work around the river.

-As it stands, we're looking at the potential for rain. Be prepared with a rain jacket or poncho.

-Bring your food (lunch and or snacks), water, trash bags, and layers of clothes in order to be prepared for variable weather conditions.

-Most of us will be working well away from a restroom. We're all human, and you know what I'm getting at: BRING TP!!! Haha...some of you may need it, some may not. Just be prepared.

-Bring work gloves. If you do not own a pair of gloves to work in, I have ten pairs of utility gloves I can provide. I also have latex gloves I can provide.

-Although I recommend bring your own trash bags, I have about 45 contractor cleanup bags, and will divide them out among the work groups, and they can handle items with sharp edges, glass, and heavy or large items.

-Some of us are going to get wet, and some of us are going to get dirty. Some of us are going to be both. If you have germex, or a similar sanitizer, it might be a good time to bring some just in case.
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  #39  
Old 03-08-2017, 10:07 PM
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I found a 3rd mattress on the WMA today while scouting for trash. Three mattress in the last three weeks. This workday should yield some "gem" finds this weekend. I am excited to see what weird stuff we collect!
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  #40  
Old 03-10-2017, 10:21 PM
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Alright folks. Workday starts tomorrow morning at 9:00 a.m. at Ravens Cliffs. Be there or be square!!! It will be chilly, so bring a jacket!! Being gloves, food, water, TP, and bags if you want, but I will have bags to hand out. Being a smile, and willingness to work! If you miss the 9:00 meetup, just pick a spot and start cleaning, and meet us again before 5:00 p.m. for the assessment of the loot at Ravens Cliffs!!! Look forward to seeing you all there!!
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  #41  
Old 03-11-2017, 09:34 PM
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It is late, so this will not be a review of the full day. I will post all that tomorrow. Today, to my knowledge, was the first organized (somewhat organized) workday on Chattahoochee WMA in at least a couple decades. TallChris, LongTom, JBoggs, and northeastgasportsman along with my father, personal friends, and NGTO forum members showed up to work. The volunteers today worked like dogs, and produced a major haul to be dumped by DNR. The forum members that participated today need to chime in, but I think we probably gathered around 600 lbs +- of trash.
Today was an extraordinary success, and I cannot thank all volunteers enough. We were short-handed, so not all of the places I had designated got cleaned, but what areas did get cleaned underwent a significant, marked improvement in aesthetic value. A full report will be produced tomorrow afternoon. Thank you a million times to the folks that came out to roll up the sleeves, and who got wet, dirty, and sweat and who not only impacted the land, but who impacted me as a person. Much good was achieved today thanks to willing hands and willing hearts. God bless you all!!!
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  #42  
Old 03-12-2017, 08:39 PM
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Alright folks. Well, our volunteer workday is in the books! I consider our day a wonderful success. Volunteers showed up and worked hard, and we got an impressive loot. Thank you so much to all who turned out to help. I cannot say thank you enough!
My intent was to post a full report today. I downsized my photos, but had difficulty converting them to HTML code (old computer, slow connection) is what I consider to be the culprit. I will be on a different computer tomorrow, and will get the full review with pics done after lunch! Thank you folks so much for the support, and for making this thing happen!
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  #43  
Old 03-12-2017, 11:20 PM
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Way to put the cleanup together Kyle! It was good meeting your pops as well as some of the other members on the forum. I wish I could have helped a little longer. You guys put in a long day and it showed. I admired the river bank on my way out. What a difference! I will be up that way a lot during turkey season still trying to get my first Hog, so if anyone sees my old dark green Honda Pilot stop and say hello.
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  #44  
Old 03-13-2017, 04:09 PM
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Default Update!!!

For any of you who are interested, here is a quick recap of the Chattahoochee WMA volunteer cleanup day we held on 3-11-17! Our day began a little chilly, but I'd say the temps were just about right for outside working conditions. Volunteers met in the parking lot at Ravens Cliffs with the exception of two who had to make late arrivals (TallChris and JBogg from the GON forum). We had a great group show up which was comprised of members from the NGTO forum (The Crow and Trout "R"), as well as Woody's members JBogg, TallChris, LongTom (the jokester), Futbolwest, and northgasportsman. After finally meeting northgeorgiasportsman, I finally realized how he kills all those big bears. They walk up to him, and when they see those big biceps, they just fall over dead. haha! My father as well as friends Tracy W. and Jeremy B. were in the mix as well. We didn't have quite enough folks to spread out across the WMA, so we concentrated our efforts on Poplar Stump Road from the check station and south. We had one runner (LongTom) who headed north to cruise the road around the Upper Campground area. I sent The Crow, Trout "R", and northgasportsman to the place I had dubbed the "disaster area", and they absolutely smashed some trash. Those boys cleaned that place slick as a whistle. In all my years up on the hooch, I had never seen the place so polished before. It truly was a sight to behold.

My friends Tracy and Jeremy took a physical job and worked sweeping the road and the river from the check station south. They climbed up and down the river bank all morning and got a serious workout while putting a major dent in the junk littering the road and river! Major thanks to you both!!

Futbolwest and I dropped off down behind the ranger station to clean the camp spot down there first thing, and we ended up pulling out a small mattress, blankets, untold amounts of cans and food trash, and no kidding, probably 35 lbs of soaked diapers. We were totally smoked after hitting just that one spot. We drove down to Martin Branch, and I went up the creek bottom to secure a trash bag and lots of beer cans I had located along the creek while futbolwest covered the road and river section north and south of the bridge climbing up and down the river bank. He looked like a rock climber at some points! My dad joined us there at the bridge, and worked the entire area there while I was up the creek and futbolwest was working that road section. My dad found a real...."gem" while cleaning there near the bridge...(pic below). After a little mid day rest at the check station and a couple photos, jBogg arrived, and I sent him and futbolwest up to Low Gap Campground. TallChris joined us at the check station after making the long drive from Dawson County when he got off work (that is some real dedication!). We headed up to Low Gap with The Crow, Chris, me, dad, jBogg, LongTom, and futbolwest, and swept that area clean. For the final stretch of the day, Chris, dad, futbolwest, and myself swept the road from about 1/2 mile north of the check station down to where we had parked at the station. On his way home, jBogg made the time to stop by Bear Den Creek, and was able to collect another trash bag full from that location as well!!!

Our intent was to utilize the dumpster at Ravens Cliffs for the disposal of the collected trash. We realized upon arrival, however, that the dumpster was not there (first time I have not seen the dumpster there), so we loaded up the loot at the check station so it could be easily accessed and loaded by the USFS.

I'd say that for eleven volunteers, we scored an impressive haul.
In my book, this workday was an extraordinary success. It improved the aesthetic and natural value of the area, and reduced the amount of trash along the headwaters that are home to wild trout along with all other valuable aquatic organisms that dwell within and make up the aquatic environment of the watershed. It reduced the amount of trash that might otherwise end up downstream on others private property, in Lake Lanier, and further polluting our water. It showed our local NF that we love her, and it united people and friends who share a heart of one accord. I got to shake new hands, see new faces, and sweat alongside new friends, and this event meant the world to me.

A secondary benefit of the workday is that we were able to score some cans to donate for the City of Cornelia Fire Department's aluminum can recycling point, and give back to those that serve and protect us, our homes, and our communities.

One of my primary objectives through this is one that I have not yet mentioned. Above all else, I hope to prompt others to action. I hope you guys and girls out there can see the good work done by these good folks, and be inspired to take action and conduct work in and around your National Forest or state lands in your neck of the woods. We conducted this thing without real affiliation with any conservation or working group. Through a few people getting together, I think we got a LOT done in just a matter of a few short hours. I hope others out there can see this and use it as inspiration, motivation, and a model for reference. Our National Forest and state lands give so much to us all, they deserve for us to give back to them from time to time.

Lastly, I cannot effectively articulate my gratitude to those volunteers that came out, and especially to the ones that made the long drives. I know it's hard to get excited about spending your free time picking up garbage, and there's nothing sexy about trash, but you guys showed up and showed out regardless, and I believe affected a major improvement in the area! Thank you, thank you, and THANK YOU!!!!

Enjoy the pics!

Examples of what we were up against:



We weren't certain about whether USFS/DNR was going to be happy about the place I had chosen to leave the trash, so as per your request, northgeorgiasportsman haha!:



jBogg and futbolwest at the check station



the first load:



TallChris sweeping the road above the check station



The crew excluding jBogg, Futbolwest, Tall Chris, and my dad



Taking a break at Martin Branch



Cleaning along the river bank


Dad working along a former campsite



Dad's..."interesting" find at Martin Branch. I saw him using his trash poker to dig at a white lid at the bottom of a rotten log, but paid it no mind. A moment later, I heard him say "uh oohh", and I turned around. He was holding a pill bottle stuffed with white paper. I said "dad, its stuffed with paper, there's probably something in it. Open it and lets see what it is. He opened it, and pulled out the paper and unwrapped this makeshift meth pipe made from a light bulb from the tail light of a car, and a straw. I said alright, let me get a picture of it, and took one. Then I said "alright, now the next thing we need to do is throw it away...immediately!!!" haha!



The haul



Another view



The cans we were able to donate at the can collection point to be recycled for the City of Cornelia Fire Dept
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Last edited by Killer Kyle; 03-13-2017 at 08:29 PM.
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  #45  
Old 03-13-2017, 07:00 PM
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Excellent write up Kyle. And I think I can speak for all the volunteers and for those that couldn't come when I say, thank you for your willingness and passion to organize the event.

As much as we hauled, there's still literally tons of garbage marring up some of our favorite haunts. I share your hope that our little attempt to clean up the mess will inspire others to take up the mantle of stewardship.

Thanks again for your leadership on this. Next time we head up that way, let's have fly rods in hand.
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  #46  
Old 03-13-2017, 07:03 PM
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BTW, TallChris is an apt username. That boy is lofty
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  #47  
Old 03-13-2017, 07:39 PM
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Awesome stuff guys. I'm really disappointed I couldn't be there. Man that meth pipe and pill bottle made me sad. I bet it was somebody's that had at one time been hunting or fishing up there with their daddy or something and thought they could relive how good life was back then. But the problem is, huntn and fishing isn't what it was when your strung out. No peace to be found in that stuff. God bless all and good work!
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  #48  
Old 03-14-2017, 07:10 PM
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Awesome! Thank you all for your hard work!
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  #49  
Old 03-14-2017, 08:30 PM
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Kyle I commend you and the fellow sportsman for your hard work cleaning up the forest we all enjoy. Would liked to have came up but had to work. But don't every one say that when the work is done. Will pay more attention during Turkey season to do my part.
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Old 03-14-2017, 11:29 PM
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Thanks to all for the kind words! The NGTO board of directors approached me about making this an annual event. It seems tempting, but me.......I'm not much for commitments. I'll commit to a fishing trip, to waking up early to hunt, to a cold adult libation, or to a pulled pork sandwich. Most other commitments take a backseat. Although I'd love to make this an annual event, Chattahoochee WMA is not the only place on earth, or in the NE GA mtns. There are lots of places that need attention. It just so happened that I just tend to spend a lot of time on Chattahoochee and knew where the trash was. I'm sure Cooper's Creek, Chestatee, Blue Ridge, and Lake Russell as well as others need some love, I just don't know where the garbage is there. Northeastgasportsman even mentioned Richard Russell Scenic Hwy to me , and I know without a shadow of a doubt that he is correct, because I have seen the trash there myself. I don't know if I want to commit to an event being tied down in one place when so many other places need maintenance. Tell me folks, what are your thoughts? Do you think it may be practical to hold an event like this every year in a different location and for the same purpose? We would need intel from locals and "scouts" to give us the scoop on where the junk is. Sounds like RippleRider already mentioned one place up Owl Creek Rd. (RippleRider, is that along a section of NF?!)
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