Building Bridges to Nature
A new footbridge enables hiker of all ages to enjoy trils in the South River Greenway. Photo by Janet Norman.
April 17, 2010 was the fifth annual "Walk in the Woods," a public hike sponsored by the South River Greenway partnership on a 630-acre, limited access preserve. The South River Greenway contains two of the largest forested tracts remaining in Anne Arundel County, along with 100 miles of streams that flow into the South River, 800 acres of wetlands, and a number of historical and cultural sites.
The forests and wetlands harbor a large diversity of migratory birds; including species of high conservation concern like the Kentucky warbler, Louisiana waterthrush, wood thrush, worm-eating warbler and prairie warbler; amphibians including the wood frog; and many types of reptiles, and mammals.
Volunteers cart a portion of the new footbridge to its new location. Photo by Janet Norman.
From the very young to the very mature, visitors were encouraged to discover the trails, beaver ponds and spring delights in the forest. A week earlier, a 9-foot wide stream bisected one of these trails. Chesapeake Bay Field Office biologist Janet Norman enlisted the help of volunteers, including her engineer husband and children, to build a solid yet temporary bridge that could be carted into the preserve in multiple pieces and then assembled on site to provide a wobble-free crossing of the stream for all the hikers.
More than 200 hikers took this opportunity to explore the greenway. Non-traditional outreach to local karate schools, grocery stores, social networking, and other venues helped broaden the hike opportunity and create new supporters of the Greenway efforts.
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