( Summer 2018 )
The ”Fix-the-Gull” project is rolling. The project is beginning with Put-in/Take-Out steps at the Washout @ River Right. The area most often used by local summer camps and leadership centres is under construction as of May 28, 2018. Then comes steps into Washout on RR and RL.
The Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (OMNRF) have reviewed our application over the past 18 months. Department of Fisheries and Oceans made their approval in April 2018. OMNRF has indicated this will likely lead to approval for in-water work for 2018-2020.
It has been a long road. Volunteers like Denis McGee of Haliburton (OC-1) helped design the OMNRF and DFO submission with boulders and GPS coordinates, and the overall application was driven by WO Volunteers. Mike Yee (OC), Victor Ettel (OC, K1), Dave Humphrys (OC) and a couple of anonymous paddlers have also been critical to the effective kick-off of the Fix-The-Gull fundraising gameplan for 2018.
For the past 40 years, the Gull River and Minden Whitewater Preserve has provided whitewater experiences like ”Intro to Whitewater” with friends, families, clients and summer campers, paddlers surfing their 1st wave, rescue training for firefighters, fishing for anglers, marriage proposals and weddings, and of course whitewater races for athletes, recreational and international, like the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games and Annual Open Canoe Race, and many others.
But things have changed. The Gull River Whitewater Preserve is in trouble.
Due to major floods in 2014, 2016 and now 2017, the river has significant movement of boulders, disintegration of eddy walls, and hazardous rocks into mid-river. With the high volume of users in recent years, there is also the expected erosion of canoe/kayak “put-ins” and “takeout” paths.
A comprehensive application for work permits was submitted to the OMNRF for river and shoreline work over a 3 year period. Starting in 2018, it will be focused on paddler high use areas and safety issues.
Overall the project will cost an estimated $55,000. Whitewater Ontario raised $18,000 from WO membership fees, contracts with partners, and camping fees. Private donors from the paddling community raised $13,000. Grants and funding sources are being explored, but are limited. We have raised $31,000 in cash and donations in kind.
That leaves the project in need of $24,000. The river needs your help.
If you can donate $25 or 100, or have a source of funding, it all makes a difference. Give us a call or email. Or go direct and click here for the National Sport Trust Fund donation path that generates a charitable receipt.