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Welcome to the Blue Wall Weekly, your source for what's going on outside along the Southern Blue Ridge Escarpment. Feel free to share your own photos, videos, and adventures along the Blue Wall by sending them to the email address at the bottom of the page, and we'll do our best to make you (locally) famous!
A half-dead pine, lower limbs rotted half away, silhouettes against Jocassee’s summer sky. A bird alights, dark as a black hole, dark silhouette perched on dark silhouette. “Uh huh, uh huh” it calls like a recalcitrant child. It’s the signature sound of a fish crow, and this one is joined in the canopy of pine by a second, third, and fourth bird. The tone changes from call to conversation. Like retirees gathered around the poker table they discuss the weather, fishing, the comings and goings of park guests looking to cool off in Jocassee waters. Eventually one crow gets his feathers ruffled and flies off. The eavesdropper goes for the camera to get the perfect shot of three crows silhouetted on a bare branch against a summer sky. The other birds give a chorus of “uh huh, uh huh,” and they, too, fly away, but in the opposite direction.~K
Learn about fungal ecology and life cycles, see our lab, and the fruiting room. Many aspects of mushrooms, including medicinal properties, cooking, and myco-remediation to soil creation will be discussed along the way!
Join Kelly Bruce, an Association of Nature and Forest Therapy certified guide on this walk where you’ll have the opportunity to be present in the moment, deepening your connection with nature, community and yourself, while discovering the many gifts nature has to offer.
This 5 year mushroom foraging permit meets the criteria required by the state health departments and formally approved for the foraging and selling of wild mushrooms in the following states: South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York and Rhode Island.
Within the last few weeks, several of us with JLT have spent time attending lectures & trainings, some becoming certified SC Adopt- a- Stream volunteers. The goal…to monitor and sample the rivers and streams feeding Lake Jocassee and surrounding areas! Jocassee is one of the first impoundments in the Savannah Watershed. The headwaters start in Jackson & Transylvania counties in N.C., and fall tumultuously through the Jocassee river gorges; tumbling down the escarpment into Lake Jocassee. From there, they flow through a 33.5’ diameter pipe into Lake Keowee, on to Lakes Hartwell, Russell, and Clarks Hill and then down the Savannah River to the final destination, the Atlantic Ocean, via the Savannah Harbor in Georgia. We at JLT continually strive to educate ourselves and our guests about the importance of our water quality & the ecosystems they support. Personally, as a native of Oconee County, I’ve witnessed the growth and changes in the area throughout my life & I’m very grateful to see the number of people involved in educating, instructing, monitoring & protecting these waters. From Dr. C Rhett Jackson, UGA Hydrologist, PE (recent speaker at the Zahner lectures at the Highlands Biological Station); Sierra Hylton, Adopt-A-Stream Program Coordinator Water Quality Division, S.C Department of Health & Environmental Control; Josie Newton, Watershed Scientist for Friends of the Reedy River; Justin, Christy, & the volunteers who took time from their work schedules to attend these trainings & also to Duke Energy, for funding and supplying the sampling kits & supplies necessary for volunteers to sample sites around the state. The Cherokee knew the value of clean water thousands of years ago, it was important then, it’s even more important now. Get involved; let’s take care of it together.
SC Adopt AStream volunteers play an important role in monitoring and tracking water quality. In providing baseline information about stream conditions, volunteers, local communities, educators, and local government agencies can partner to protect and restore our waters. You do not need to be an environmentalist, fisherman, or scholar to join this effort. All are welcome to find more information, seek training, and add to the knowledgebase of river health in South Carolina!
ABOUT THE BLUE WALL
Spanning three states (North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia) and encompassing 859,000 acres, the Southern Blue Ridge Escarpment, known as the 'Blue Wall' by Native Americans, contains some of the highest natural diversity of rare plants and animals found anywhere in the world.