Georgia DNR, Wildlife Resources Division and Mountain Stewards Hold Ribbon Cutting On New Trail

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GAINESVILLE, Ga. (April 21, 2008) – At a ceremony held earlier today, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division (WRD) and the Mountain Stewards officially dedicated a fully accessible trail located at the Dawson Forest Wildlife Management Area (WMA). The 1,940-foot boardwalk, located near the Amicalola River at Highway 53, provides a way for hikers of all abilities to enjoy the trail and in addition, offers easy access for fishing. Local dignitaries, including Gary Pichon of the Dawson County Board of Commissioners and members of the Dawson County Chamber of Commerce, as well as WRD and Mountain Stewards representatives were present at the ceremony.

“The new boardwalk is already being used by anglers and hikers, and we have heard nothing but compliments,” says WRD Region Supervisor Ken Riddleberger. “This work will help protect the riverbanks as well as provide easy access for everyone wanting to enjoy the river.”

The National Recreational Trails Program, with the purpose of providing and maintaining trails to support the Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan, granted funding for the trail. The Mountain Stewards, a nonprofit organization dedicated to opening and maintaining a network of trails and open spaces in the Southern Appalachian Mountains, provided the design work and labor to construct the boardwalk.

Under an agreement signed by WRD and Mountain Stewards in 2004, both partners have committed to working toward improving and protecting the natural resources of the region and informing the public about Georgia’s natural, historical and cultural resources. The opening of this trail is a continuation of projects partnered by these two groups on Dawson Forest WMA.

Dawson Forest WMA is located near Dawsonville in Northeast Georgia. The area covers 25,000 acres and offers many recreational opportunities including; hunting (deer, turkey, small game, dove and waterfowl), fishing, canoe access points, camping, hiking, horseback riding, bird-watching, wildlife observation and picnicking.

For more information on Dawson Forest WMA, visit For more information on the Mountain Stewards, visit