Our river blog is dedicated to topics related to paddling the Upper James River region of Virginia. It includes paddle topics ranging from boating safety, paddling reports, boat landings, fishing reports, environmental stories, water levels, river related business writeups, cool river gear, pictures, and videos of any thing to do with paddling in the Upper James River watershed. We publish articles related to the Upper James, Jackson, Maury, & Cowpasture Rivers.
a long, several years wait for the Glasgow access improvements to be completed,
we have decided to move forward with our re-start for the Cushaw Project, the
goal being a better take-out below Balcony.
The Glasgow improvements are somewhat bogged down in bureaucratic red
tape, but at least the way is clear to use the new put-in that is directly on
First step: apply
process set up by the legislature to apply for an at-grade crossing starts with
a “Letter of Intent,” which is really a form that calls for nine different
subjects to be addressed. Then the
application goes to the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR). Jennifer Wampler is the point person at
DCR. After DCR reviews the application,
and if it is approved by DCR, it then goes to CSX.
Lock 14 is the first choice:
are submitting a request for an at-grade crossing at Lock 14, which is a nice
old historic canal lock in excellent shape.
Much of it is covered with brush and needs work. Interested?
plan to do a gravel road off Rt 501 that would run down to the track but not
cross it. There will be parking at the
top of the hill but only a turnaround at the bottom for loading boats.
CSX has argued liability, but has none:
last major work on this project was legislative. We added language to the Virginia code that
made it crystal clear that railroads would be exempt from lawsuits if they
allowed the public to cross their tracks.
It remains to be seen if CSX has digested the new code and will
recognize that liability issues are no more.
Their lawyers will not likely accept this as it reduces their work
Cost of development?
have estimated the cost of the project will be about $200,000. Currently, we have $165,000 in funds
available from Dominion Power. So expect
a major fundraising effort if we get the nod from CSX for the crossing.
newest letter of support for the project comes from Friends of the Roanoke
River, as of January 7, 2014. In
February, we will solicit a support letter from the Botetourt County Blueway
Committee. If you know of other
organizations or companies that would do a letter, please let me know.