Photo essay: Saving the French Broad

Around 15 participants from several states are currently on the seventh day of the second annual Save the French Broad Float Trip, an 11-day outing that covers some 119 river miles, and is intended to build public awareness of river life and local water quality. The trip has been organized by Hartwell Carson, the French Broad Riverkeeper, and the Western North Carolina Alliance. Xpress spent the day with the flotilla yesterday and it was awesome. Photos by Michael Muller

From Upper Watauga Riverkeeper Donna Marie Lisenby’s Facebook Page: “Today me, Hartwell Carson and Mountain Xpress photographer Michael Muller hiked through briars, thorns, dog hobble, holly bushes and poison ivy. Then we waded up a creek full of effluent, climbed into and traversed the entire length of a murky, black, effluent filled culvert that went under the interstate. And yes the damn culvert got smaller, darker and nastier the further upstream we went…Michael covered the story for the Mountain Xpress newspaper. He stayed with me and French Broad Riverkeeper Hartwell Carson all day long and took some phenomenal pictures of people and pollution. Note the pictures of us crawling into the culvert and going under the interstate to the coal ash pond outfall. For safety reasons we left Hartwell’s dog, Junebug, behind during this part of the trip. Junebug howled and barked with indignation at being left behind but Michael never even blinked, he just kept going with us through the worst of it. Hats off to you Michael Muller, I would take you on a Riverkeeper sampling trip anywhere, anytime. Great work.”



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