October edition of the Polk Trails Newsletter
September 30 Trails Meeting Summary
  • Our trails meeting was held outdoors on the Saluda Outfitters deck. The cool weather following the afternoon rain provided a pleasant environment in which to talk trails.
  • We started by introducing Ryan, the new AmeriCorps Trails Coordinator for Polk County. We then proceeded forward with an update on White Oak Mountain: Peter Barr, a renowned trail developer, plans to join a local team to scout and design White Oak Trail in the winter to advise on this project.
  • Alexander's Ford has a newly constructed trail worth checking out!
  • There is excitement surrounding the new climbing park near Tryon: anyone interested in trail construction or experience in climbing development would be a welcome addition!
  • Volunteers with Mountain True and the Green RiverKeepers met on the 21st to remove trash from the Green River. Canoes and duckies were loaded to maximum capacity as they floated down to Lake Adger. Approximately 15 tires of various sizes were recovered along with a plethora of assorted sandals.
  • Our next trails meeting is 6 pm on the 28th of October, same location--we hope to see you there!
We hope you can attend our work day October 24th from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. in the rear parking lot of the recreation complex: we will focus on tidying up the unfinished trail.

  • Check the Facebook page for work days in the near future!
Kudzu's Worst Enemy

Arriving a few minutes late, I could hear the distant buzz of a small engine as the Kudzu warriors were already at work removing the invasive plant from Woodland Park in Tryon. My first impression was one of surprise: I didn't expect the number of volunteers that had arrived, or the fact that all of them had shown up before I had. With a smile and a handshake I was given a quick lesson on Kudzu: Kudzu is an invasive species that suffocates trees and other plants; removing the Kudzu bulbs that are in the soil is the ideal method to stop its' proliferation; my job was to remove the vines that were covering the tree branches. Now, here are your gloves, and clippers--get to work!

I arrived with a pre-perspiration stickiness, but was soon dripping sweat as I joined in on the removal efforts. The local volunteers moved with focused energy intent on preserving the wooded community where they live. A chainsaw, bladed weed-eater, and many hands made a noticeable difference in short time. Removing Kudzu is a tangible, enjoyable, and cathartic process, intent on preserving our landscape. I look forward to my next chance to volunteer with the Kudzu Warriors!

AmeriCorps Member
Polk County Trails Coordinator
Trails Update!
  • We will have a work day focused on the unfinished trail that can be found in the rear parking lot of the rec. complex on the 24th of October from 9am to 11am.
  • With the onset of fall and cool temperatures, the middle school hiking club is set to begin their after school hiking series starting soon. The number of students that will be participating is much higher than in past years!
  • A recent visit to Vaughn Creek reviled an exciting discovery--a mower recently came in and mowed down the weeds and shrubbery!
  • Be on the look out for Monarch Butterflies passing through our area as they are migrating to Mexico! (https://www.monarch-butterfly.com/monarch-migration.html) And for the dedicated observer, let your sightings become part of a larger body of understanding focused on Monarch migration and health--become a citizen scientist! (https://www.monarchwatch.org/)
AmeriCorps Update!
While Travis was in the process of traveling back to the coast, Ryan, the new AmeriCorps trails coordinator for Polk County, was moving from Southwest Colorado to take up where Travis left off. Ryan was born in Johnson City, TN & spent much of his childhood rambling through the hardwood forest. Memories & hopes of preserving the unadulterated places in Appalachia have brought Ryan to Polk County.

Over the last couple of weeks Ryan has been familiarizing himself with the trails in Polk, meeting the community, and making new friends. Ryan is excited to be part of an organization committed to healthy and sustainable land use. Ryan believes that outdoor recreation & environmental education are the wooded path to preserving the wild beauty found around Polk County and Western NC. Ryan likes to talk to everyone, and is always excited to meet new people.
  • Upcoming Outings:

Pick up your copy of the...

Paddle Trail Guide
for the Broad & Green River
-Access point and river information for the 1st, 2nd, and Main Broad & Green River
-Boating access information for Lake Lure, Lake Adger, Moss Lake & Lake Bowen
-Suggested trips
-Locally made with local knowledge

From the Polk County Parks & Recreation office!
(105 N. Peak St., Columbus, NC 28722)
If you would like to have a photo featured on the Polk Trails Facebook page , please email the image and include a short description.

Preferred content: In Polk County and on publicly accessible land.

Email: trails@polknc.org
The AmeriCorps Trails Coordinator works for Polk County Parks & Recreation through a grant from the  Polk County Community Foundation . The Trails Coordinator manages trail work days, various partnerships and other trail related initiatives in the county.

The Polk Trails website offers
  • Description, images, parking, and some maps for trail systems.
  • Events calendar.
  • Information on how to adopt- a- trail.
  • A Nature Navigators page (Polk County Middle School hiking club).
  • Links to maps and other resources.
  • Other general information.