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Boat trip on Beargrass Creek

Join us for a boat trip on Beargrass Creek, hosted by Botanica, with tour guide David Wicks

Two Dates:

Sat, October 17, 2015 from 3:00-6:00 pm

Wed, October 21, 2015 from 4:00-7:00 pm

Refreshments served before departure
Trip begins and ends at the Louisville Community Boathouse, in Waterfront Park


Weds, October 21 from 4:00-7:00 pm
Member Tickets: Reserve online
Non-Member Tickets: $10.  Purchase online

A three hour cruise on Beargrass Creek in the heart of Louisville. Learn about the history of Beargrass Creek, the historic neighborhood called “The Point,” and the land that will become the Waterfront Botanical Gardens.

Using 30 foot Voyageur Canoes we will explore the lower reaches of Beargrass Creek. Paddling on one mile of the Creek we will be able to witness the impact of our community on the ecological and aesthetic environment. Beargrass drains 61 square miles of Jefferson County and is comprised of three forks – Muddy Fork, the Middle Fork and the South Fork.

Details of The Trip:

Louisville Community Boat House
Louisville Community Boat House, near the Yellow Parking Lot at Waterfront Park.

We meet at the new Louisville Community Boat House, enjoy snacks, put on life jackets, receive safety and paddling instructions and then paddle up stream on the Ohio to the confluence of Beargrass Creek. On the west side of the Beargrass Cut Off is the Butchertown Greenway and the future site of the Waterfront Botanical Gardens. On the eastern side of the Confluence area of the creek is Eva Bandman Park, and on the western side is the new development “River Park Place.” We enter the canal by passing under river road and the CSX Railroad Bridge. We head up the 1850’s canal also called Beargrass Creek Cut off. This is a canal completed in the 1856 and redirected the creek away from downtown.

We head out of the canal section and back into the natural stream bed when we pass under the I-71 Bridge and paddle up to the MSD flood pumping station and Karen Lynch Park. We continue up the creek to the first riffle, on the eastern side of the creek is Eyedia consignment store and their impressive rain garden. Then we turn around and head back through the pumping station past several abandoned bridge abutments from the 1800’s and the confluence with the Muddy fork. We paddle by a very eroded bank caused by the discharge pipe from the Metro Police Vehicle Impoundment Lot. The impoundment lot has been identified by community members as a significant problem for the ecological health of the creek. Depending on the weather and the conditions on the Ohio River, we would paddle down “the shoot” between Louisville and Tow Head Island and explore Louisville’s Waterfront Park and then return to the Community Boat House.

About David Wicks:
David Wicks is the Executive Director of Get Outdoors Kentucky: GoKY . He is also a Beargrass Creek Trail Committee member and on the serves on the Board of the Future Fund Land Trust and the Kentuckiana Paddlers Association. He is a master gardener and an Audubon/Toyota Together Green Fellow as well as an environmental education specialist.