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High Falls, Dekalb County, Alabama

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August and September Activities








AUGUST 26, SATURDAY, 7:00 p.m.
Evening Walk
Where: Hillsboro Trail, Helena, Shelby County, Alabama
Details: Join friendly folks on an easy four-mile evening walk on the Hillsboro Trail in Helena, Alabama.  This smooth trail is wide, paved and with only a few short hills.   On this particular walk you will be walking on a scenic trail which goes through mostly wooded terrain. 

No motorized vehicles are allowed on your trail!  All road crossings are through three tunnels under the roads.  Note this is a relatively easy outing, one which should be lots of fun for everyone.  Well-behaved, carefully supervised children age seven and up able to walk four miles without complaining are welcome on this walk. 

After the walk we’ll enjoy going for frozen yogurt at Yogurt Mountain in Hoover.  Depart for the walk at 7:00 p.m. from the front parking lot at the Helena Middle School.

Info: Dan Frederick, seoutings@bellsouth.net or 205/631-4680

 
SEPTEMBER 2, SATURDAY, 9:00 a.m.
River Float, Picnic, Swim on the Locust Fork in Blount County near County Line and Trafford
Details: Easy river float on the Locust Fork River.  Have fun swimming and just sitting in the pools in the river. We will be floating from Vaughn’s Bridge to the location of the previous Dean’s Ferry Bridge.  Please bring a picnic lunch, drink, towel, sunscreen and something to float on such as an inflatable vinyl float or air mattress.  Please see float note below for information about acquiring floats.

Pack your lunch, sunscreen, towel and drink in 2 plastic garbage bags with twist ties, one bag over the other.  Then put the bags in your daypack and strap the pack to your back.  This keeps your things dry and prevents them from floating away.   Wear swimsuit and sturdy footwear you don’t mind getting wet and dirty.  Old sneakers work well.  Bare feet, flip-flops, slip-ons and thin-soled “beach shoes” are not acceptable!  You must be able to swim to participate in this outing!

Well-behaved, properly supervised children age 8 and up welcome, but parents are responsible for all risks to their children.  Bring a friend or several if you wish.

Spring floats, passenger car and pick up truck tire tubes and inflatable boats are not permitted on SEO river floats!  A spring float is a flotation device consisting of an inflatable outer oval with a small, few inch diameter cross section and a large mesh interior.  Those spring floats are meant for floating in swimming pools and on lakes in still water, not for floating the Locust Fork.  They are difficult to steer and therefore unsafe for use on Southeastern Outings river floats.

Because parking at the take out is available for only 3 or so vehicles, we want people to carpool as much as possible from the meeting place in the morning.

Depart 9:00 a.m. from the Hayden/Corner Park and Ride.

Info: Dan Frederick, email seoutings@bellsouth.net or call 205/631-4680


SEPTEMBER 9, SATURDAY, 11:30 a.m.
Potluck Picnic Lunch followed by Afternoon Kayak or Canoe Paddle or Afternoon Dayhike
Where: Lower Fishing Lake (now called Beaver Lake), Oak Mountain State Park, located at the back entrance to the park.
Details: Prior to the canoeing and kayaking and hiking, boaters, hikers and other Southeastern Outings people and guests will get together at the Mallard Pavilion in the neighborhood of the Flip Side Water Sports office, (FS and formerly the Fishing Center), for a group potluck picnic.  Please bring a dish of food to share with the group.  Please bring all food items to this potluck in dishes with a cover on them (think “like Tupperware”.)  Please do not bring your food in fast food, cardboard or open containers.  There are obvious issues with bees, flies and yellow jackets, etc. when setting up food exposed outdoors to nuisance insects. 

You may bring a bag of potato chips, but if you do, you should bring some more substantial food to share in addition.  Please bring also $5/person ($2 seniors and children) park admission fee, a beverage for yourself and folding lawn chairs if you have them.  Southeastern Outings will furnish plates, cups, knives, forks, spoons, napkins, and ice.  Picnic preparations will begin at 11:30 a.m. We will begin eating lunch at 12:00 noon regardless of whether you are there or not!

After lunch you can enjoy boating on the lower fishing lake.  You may bring your own boat (no charge) or you may rent a canoe from the park by paying for your rental canoe at the back gate to the park.  The park says they have 5 tandem canoes for rent.  Two of the canoes each used to have one broken seat in them.  Rental rate for canoes is $14 per hour. Cash only.  No credit cards accepted.  First come, first served.

FS has available for rent 5 solo kayaks and 8 paddleboards.  Rental rate for either is $20 per hour.  Cash or credit cards accepted by FS. 

No shuttle involved in any of these boating activities.  Share an adventure!  Bring a friend. 

We’ll launch our boats about 1:30 p.m. from a small peninsula which is at the end of the lower drive which passes by the front of the FS office just below the driveway into the parking lot where you parked. 

Or you can enjoy a moderately easy afternoon hike along the shore of the upper fishing lake (now called Lunker Lake) in the park.  Hike departs from the Mallard Pavilion about 1:30 p.m. 

You are welcome to participate in the boating or hiking and skip the group picnic; you are welcome to skip the boating or hiking and come just for the picnic; or, as most people did the previous four times we have sponsored this outing, you are encouraged to enjoy the outdoor exercise activities AND the picnic.

Meet at the Mallard Pavilion just downhill from the very far end of the parking lot which is designated for the FS office near the back entrance to Oak Mountain State Park

Info: (picnic) Acyenith Alexander 205/529-2253;
(boating) Dan Frederick, seoutings@bellsouth.net or phone 205/631-4680;
(hiking) Kerry Cooper, kkcooper22@gmail.com or 205/541-5233


SEPEMBER 16, SATURDAY, 9:00 a.m.
Easy River Float #2, Picnic, Swim, Short, Moderate Dayhike
Where: Locust Fork from Swann Bridge to Powell Falls near Cleveland, AL
Details: Easy river float on the Locust Fork River.  Float in the river from Swann Covered Bridge to Powell Falls.  We’ll view a genuine, old but newly refurbished wooden covered bridge.  Then we’ll float under the bridge and further, about a mile and a half, downstream to the waterfall.  We’ll also view the sheer cliffs that rise about 60 feet above the river.  So enjoy a flowing river, covered bridge, high rock bluffs and at least one waterfall—all along a one mile stretch of this river.  Bring something to float on such as an inflatable vinyl float or air mattress.  Substantial, fabric-covered, inflatable, vinyl, rectangular floats like you use to ride the waves at the Gulf work best.  See float note below for information about acquiring floats.

Also please bring a picnic lunch, drink, towel and sunscreen. Pack these items in 2 plastic garbage bags with twist ties, one bag over the other.  Then put the bags in your daypack and strap the pack to your back.  This keeps your things dry and prevents them from floating away.  Wear swimsuit and sturdy foot protection.  Old sneakers work well.  Bare feet, flip-flops, slip-ons and thin-soled “beach shoes” are not acceptable! 

Lunch will be on the huge flat rock in the middle of the river beside the waterfall.  Have fun swimming in the pools at the base of the rock, jumping into the larger pool, climbing up and down or just sitting in Powell Falls.  We will walk back to the bridge on a trail along the river.  You must be able to swim to participate in this outing!

Well-behaved, properly supervised children age 7 and up able to swim welcome, but parents are responsible for all risks to their children. 

Spring floats, passenger car and pick up truck tire tubes and inflatable boats are not permitted on SEO river floats!  A spring float is a flotation device consisting of an inflatable outer oval with a small, few inch diameter cross section and a large mesh interior.  The last time a woman tried to float down this river with us on a spring float (now that I know what it is called), I had to order two high school football players in our group to wade out into the river immediately to seize her and her spring float in order to prevent her from being swept over the big waterfall.  Those spring floats are meant for floating in swimming pools and on lakes in still water, not for floating the Locust Fork River.  They are difficult to steer and therefore unsafe for use on Southeastern Outings river floats.

Bring a friend or several if you wish.  Please be at the Cleveland Chevron Service Station no later than 8:45 a.m. ready to depart promptly at 9:00 a.m.  Arriving 15 minutes before departure time will allow time to use the restrooms at the service station, hear announcements concerning the day’s event, and form carpools from the Chevron.  Parking is extremely limited at the put in point on the river. 

Info: Dan Frederick, seoutings@bellsouth.net or 205/631-4680


Float Note
Substantial, fabric-covered, inflatable, vinyl, rectangular floats like you use to ride the waves at the Gulf work best.  Trip leader Dan Frederick has children’s size floats (60 inches long) for sale for $12 each ONLY at the start of outings Dan attends.  Please pay either with exact change or a check made out to SEO.  First come, first served.
Here is an alternative to carrying your lunches, water, towel and sunscreen in a pack on your back.  You can bring with you two 6-7 foot lengths of sturdy cord.  Place your pack with your things in it in the middle of the foot of your float.  Lash the pack to your float with the two cords, one passing around the float and through the top of the straps and the other passing around the float and through the bottom of the straps of your pack.  Then lie on your float with the pack sort of between your knees with your feet splayed out at the bottom corners of your float.  Using this method eliminates your having to float down the river for several hours on your belly with a pack on your back, and it also gives you the option of turning over and lying on your back in the slower-moving sections of the river in order to change your body position and float more comfortably.  This method for transporting your pack on your float works only if you have a 72-inch long float.  Either method of transporting your pack is satisfactory and acceptable.  But I learned that people like it when you give them choices.  In any case, your lunches, etc. should be double bagged (or placed in a waterproof canoe bag) inside your pack.

Inflatable boats are not permitted on SEO river floats!


SEPTEMBER 23, SATURDAY, 9:00 a.m.
Kayak/Canoe Trip, Tallapoosa River at Heflin, Alabama
Details: The section we will paddle is relatively easy with no classified rapids.  This is a scenic stretch of river located in a very rural area.  Forty-four SEO people participated in this very popular outing in August, 2011.

Please note that for this trip you may rent one or two-person sit-upon plastic kayaks and paddles at the take out from Tallapoosa River Outfitters.  Rental fees include life jackets and shuttle service to the put-in.  Also the outfitter will shuttle for a fee all private boats used on this outing.  If you wish to rent a kayak from Tallapoosa River Outfitters, please call Dan Frederick, 205/631-4680.  Dan will relay your reservation on to the outfitter.  Please note that the outfitter has only 19 one-person sit-upon kayaks and 5 tandem (2-person) kayaks for rent, so be sure you call to reserve early.  Once all their boats of one type or the other are reserved for September 23, there will be no more boats of that type available to rent! 

Please note that this outfitter no longer has any canoes for rent.  If you want to paddle a canoe for this outing, we suggest that you buy one or borrow one from a friend.  Southeastern Outings has terminated its canoe rental agreement with UAB.

Please see note for canoe trips below for more general information. 

After the canoe and kayak trip we are planning to go to a restaurant on the way back for dinner.  Hot showers are available for $5.00 at a truck stop by Interstate 20.  If you would like to shower, wash up and/or have dinner with us at the restaurant after the canoe trip, please bring a change of clothes and your shower things.

Depart 9:00 a.m. from the Leeds Highway 78 gravel parking lot. 

Reservations Required: You must contact trip leader Dan Frederick, seoutings@bellsouth.net or phone 205/631-4680 if you plan to come on this canoe/kayak trip.  Please advise your name, telephone number, skill level, whether you are bringing or wish to rent a canoe or kayak and whether you need a paddling partner.  You may leave a message on Dan’s voice mail if you wish. 

Info: If you have further questions, please contact Dan Frederick, 205/631-4680 or seoutings@bellsouth.net.


SEPTEMBER 24, SUNDAY, 2:00 p.m.
Moderately easy four-mile dayhike on the Black Creek Trail in Fultondale, just north of Birmingham
Details: Walk on a rails-to-trails conversion route on an old railroad right of way.  This smooth trail is wide and level.  No hills!  This finely-crushed rock surface trail goes through mostly wooded terrain.

No motorized vehicles are allowed on the trail!  This outing should be lots of fun for everyone.  Well-behaved, carefully supervised children age seven and up able to walk four miles without complaining are welcome on this walk.

Depart 2:00 p.m. from Black Creek Park in Fultondale, Alabama.

Trip Leader: Dan Frederick, seoutings@bellsouth.net or 205/631-4680


SEPTEMBER 30, SATURDAY, 9:00 a.m.
Canoe and Kayak Trip with Dinner After
Where: Terrapin Creek near Piedmont, Alabama
Details:  Please plan to come on a relaxing canoe trip on Terrapin Creek in Calhoun County near Piedmont, Alabama.  The section we will paddle is relatively easy with no classified rapids.  This is a scenic stretch of creek located in a very rural area.  Thirty-three Southeastern Outings people participated in this popular outing in June of 2017.

Please note that for this trip you may rent canoes for $50 each or one person sit-upon plastic kayaks for $30 each from Terrapin Outdoor Center.  Rental fees include shuttle service, paddles and life jackets.  Also the outfitter will shuttle for a $10 fee per boat all private boats used on this outing.  If you wish to rent a boat from Terrapin Outdoor Center, please call the Center BEFORE September 30 at 256/447-6666 to reserve your boat.  Please be sure you tell the Center you are boating with Southeastern Outings.

After the canoe and kayak trip we are planning to go to a restaurant in Gadsden for an optional dinner.  If you would like to wash up and/or have dinner with us at the restaurant after the canoe trip, please bring a change of clothes and a towel.  Outfitter has four changing rooms and two restrooms with washbowls, toilets and running water, but no showers. 

Reservations Required: You must email seoutings@bellsouth.net or call Dan Frederick, 205/631-4680 if you plan to come on this outing.  Please advise your name, telephone number, skill level, whether you are bringing or wish to rent a canoe or kayak and whether you need a paddling partner.  You may leave a message on Dan’s voice mail if you wish.  Please do not just show up for this outing at the meeting place without making an advance reservation with Dan Frederick!  And if you decide to meet us at some place other than the meeting place specified in this announcement, please notify Dan in advance and directly of this fact.

Please come to paddle this beautiful section of river with us on September 30.

Depart at 9:00 a.m. from Applebee’s Restaurant Trussville.   For more essential information about this trip, please see Note for Canoe Trips at the end of this calendar.

Info: If you have further questions, please call Dan Frederick, 205/631-4680


Note for Kayak and Canoe Trips
The kayak and canoe outings listed in each boating trip announcement above are suitable for beginner/novice canoeists and kayakers, but each beginner canoeist must paddle with an experienced canoeist.  Life jackets are required and must be worn.  You are responsible for finding your own boat.  Bring your own boat, borrow one, paddle with a friend, or rent from the outfitter listed.

If you want to come on an SEO kayak and canoe trip AND you are renting a boat from the outfitter at the site of the trip, you are required to call the BOTH the outfitter to reserve your boat AND ALSO contact the trip leader, too, and notify him/her that you are coming!  This requirement to make two calls applies only to the September 30 trip, not to the September 23 trip. 

Two people just showed up for a river trip we had in 2015 without notifying the leader that they were coming.  This created considerable confusion and delay.  The outfitter had to make a second trip from the put in back to his office and bring two more boats to the put in because the total number of people who showed up that morning was two more than the number which the leader had given to the outfitter the day before.  Please don’t let this happen again!

Please bring in the boat your picnic lunch, something to drink, and a towel and complete change of clothes including underwear. If you get wet during the day, just slip off back into the woods and change into your dry clothes.  You’ll be very grateful that you brought them with you.  Put your belongings in a waterproof dry bag in the boat.  Wear old shoes you don’t mind getting wet (old sneakers work well).  Also bring at least 6 feet of sturdy cord to tie up your canoe if you don’t already have it attached to your own canoe or especially if you are renting a canoe.  If you have further questions, please call the trip leader.

When you make your reservation with the trip leader, please be absolutely certain to provide ALL of the following information:

1.   Whether you want to kayak or canoe
2.   Whether you are renting a boat from the outfitter or bringing your own boat
3.   Your name
4.   Your telephone number or email address
5.   If you are also making a reservation for someone else coming with you, please give the NAME of that person.  Don’t just say, “My daughter, my friend, my wife”.
6.   If you are canoeing, please give your skill level. 
7.   If you have already selected a canoe partner and you are making a reservation for your partner, too, please give the name and skill level of your partner.
8.  Please do NOT just show up at the meeting place without making an advance reservation!!
9.  And if you have made a reservation to participate and then decide to cancel, please be absolutely sure to call and notify the trip leader.  Don’t just tell your friend if you intend to cancel!!