Friday, September 12, 2008

Again, Where does the time go!

I really don't get much time to go kayaking but I seem to write about it a lot. I guess I love it when I get to go.

I just ran across these photos of a kayaking trip I took to Merchants Millpond last summer.

This is an amazing place near the North Carolina - Virginia border, about 2 hours north of New Bern.

It is a huge pond full of cypress trees. There are marked trails throughout the pond. It is totally silent except the sound of birds or turtles splashing into the water.

One really great thing about it is there are no mosquitoes, too much tannin in the water I'm told.

They rent canoes there, very reasonably priced, I think we only paid $11 for 1/2 a day.

If you ever get the chance this is a must see.

In the early 1700s, Hunters Millpond was built at the head of Bennetts Creek to provide a means of processing and marketing regional produce. Highway construction destroyed this millpond in 1922. But further downstream, Norfleets Millpond, which was built in 1811, thrived. Gristmills, a sawmill, a farm supply store and other enterprises made the area the center of trade in Gates County. Thus, the pond became known as Merchants Millpond.

Shortly before World War II operations around the millpond came to a halt and millers sold the land to developers. In the 1960s, A.B. Coleman of Moyock purchased the property and later donated 919 acres, including the millpond, to the state. His generous donation led to the establishment of Merchants Millpond State Park in 1973. In the same year, the Nature Conservancy contributed an additional 925 acres of woodlands to the park that now encompasses more than 3,250 acres.

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