Nichol’s Landing Paddling Trail Launch Set for April 30

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SPRING BRANCH, Texas — Paddling and nature enthusiasts will celebrate the official opening of the newest Texas Paddling Trail in scenic Spring Branch April 30.

Officials from the Water Oriented Recreation District of Comal County (WORD), the Guadalupe Blanco River Authority (GBRA) and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) will participate in a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Nichol’s Landing at 10 a.m., Wednesday, with refreshments following.

After the ceremony, guests are invited to paddle the initial 5-mile stretch of the Nichol’s Landing trail for a chance to experience the river first hand. A limited number of canoes will be provided, and private equipment is welcomed. Shuttle service also will be provided back to the starting point.

The initial stretch of the trail begins at Nichol’s Landing, flows through beautiful scenic areas and gentle rapids, and ends at the bridge at Farm-to-Market Road 311. An additional section continues on past FM 311 to Rebecca Creek Crossing, for a total trail length of 9.9 miles. This section of the upper Guadalupe River becomes the state’s sixth inland paddling trail, and is characterized by clear, cold water over a limestone bed.

“In a state that’s about 94 percent privately owned, public waterways are important,” said TPWD Nature Tourism Coordinator Shelly Plante. “We want to help people learn where they can access rivers in our partner communities.”

The Nichol’s Landing Paddling trail is the result of work by WORD spanning several years. The Nichol’s Landing trail joins the Goliad Paddling Trail (San Antonio River), Luling Zedler Mill Paddling Trail (San Marcos River), the Columbus Paddling Trail and the Bastrop-El Camino Real Paddling Trail (Colorado River), and the Victoria Paddling Trail-Riverside Park (Guadalupe River) and seven coastal paddling trails.

As part of TPWD’s Texas Paddling Trails network, the Nichol’s Landing Paddling Trail will include highway signage, maintained put-in and take-out locations, and interpretive information and maps to help visitors get the most out of a day on the water.

“Designating this stretch as a paddling trail will help show people the natural beauty of the area, and afford them the opportunity to enjoy a serene experience on the water,” stated W.O.R.D. Manager Mike Dussere, “It is one of the most peaceful floats I’ve ever experienced. Flows on the Upper Guadalupe can vary wildly depending on rainfall, but the majority of the time, it’s slow and quiet.”

“We are especially proud that two of the six inland paddling trails in Texas are located along segments of the Guadalupe River,” said GBRA General Manager Bill West. “The demand for trails are proof-positive that people are eager to enjoy our beautiful river and Mother Nature at her best.”