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The Director’s Eddy T

wo days ago I was on my way out to paddle in inclement weather with a daytime high in the teens. On my way out the door, my

three-year-old daughter peppered me with questions—How much does a bear weigh, Does Santa use a paddle, Do you have enough warm clothes, Do Mickey Mouse and Dumbo really live in Florida? The last question she asked was, “Why are you going paddling?” After thinking for a split second about how to give a response that would not induce another volley of questions, I simply said, “Because it’s fun.” She said “Oh, okay” in acceptance and closed the door behind me. Later that night at a big dinner with family and friends, someone

asked why I had gone paddling that day (as if it were a job requirement). Before I could answer, my daughter piped up and said, “Because it’s fun…and he’s crazy.” There was round of laughter and then my wife admitted she may have imprinted the second part of her comment by accident. Because it’s fun, we endeavor to make sure you, as a member of

the ACA, have all the tools necessary for a great paddling experience. These tools range from instructors, paddling opportunities, event and instructor insurance, volunteer opportunities or simply help locating a paddling club or watertrail. Please check out our website (www. to find tools and resources to help you have fun in 2012. Wade Blackwood Executive Director American Canoe Association


ON DURBIN CREEK Jacksonville, FL

The Bartram Canoe Trail resides on Durbin Creek in Jacksonville, FL. Created over 25 years ago, it is now maintained by Eric Bersinger and Josh Woods—

two dedicated paddlers, members of the St. Johns

Riverkeeper organization and founders of the Durbin Creek Wilderness Society. Bersinger and Woods have committed themselves to preserving the ecological and historical integrity of this scenic waterway so that it may be enjoyed by all. The Bartram Canoe Trail is on the westernmost part of the

Julington-Durbin Creek Preserve, accessible from Race Track Road. This nine-mile trail is rich with biodiversity including rare Centennial Cypresses lining the shores and bald eagle, osprey, wading birds and songbirds frequenting the area. Bersinger says, “I defy anyone to show me a more beautiful area to kayak in Northeast Florida.” The Bartram Trail Canoe Park continues to improve the

trail with floating campsites, hiking trails, trash receptacles, information kiosks, and more. For more information about the Bartram Canoe Trail and restoration efforts, visit http://


Update Your Water Trails on

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