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Get Up Close and Personal With Your River – Sojourn!

2012 July 12

This could be you, sojourning on the river! Photo courtesy of the Fish and Wildlife Service

This could be you, sojourning on the river! Photo courtesy of the Fish and Wildlife Service

By Nancy Grundahl

Merriam-Webster defines a sojourn as “a temporary stay,” like, “We enjoyed a week-long sojourn on the river.”

Never been?  Now is the right time of the year. River sojourns are usually May through September in the northeast. Many environmental and watershed groups around the country are sponsoring sojourns to help people connect with their rivers, to see them up close and personal, to appreciate their importance and  understand their challenges.

Go for a day. Go for a week. Start from the headwaters and kayak downstream. No experience necessary.

Participants pay a small fee.  Often meals and overnight camping are included. Here is a link to a list of sojourns for 2012 compiled by the Pennsylvania Organization for Watersheds and Rivers.

If you can’t make it to any of this year’s sojourns, you can do your own!  Here’s a description of the sojourn-worthy Potomac River Trail, and here are some ideas for sojourns in the Mid-Atlantic region and around the country

There are countless ways to recreate on, in, or near our waters this summer.  Have a great time rolling on the river!

And if you do, please send us some photos. Go to our State of the Environment Photography Project on Flickr.  Share your fun! And we’ll be sharing some of your photos on the blog during the summer months.

About the author: Nancy Grundahl has worked for the Philadelphia office of EPA since the mid-80’s. Nancy believes in looking at environmental problems in a holistic, multi-media way and is a strong advocate of preventing pollution instead of dealing with it after it has been created. Nancy likes to garden and during the growing season brings flowers into the office. Nancy also writes for the EPA “It’s Our Environment” blog.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed in Greenversations are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

3 Responses leave one →
  1. July 16, 2012

    It is really great that environmental and watershed groups around the country are sponsoring sojourns to help people connect with their rivers, to appreciate their significance and understand the challenges they offer.I have never been a part of something like that but it sounds like something interesting and enjoyable.

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  2. August 1, 2012

    Same here, I have never been there. But definitely I am going to schedule it with my family within August. Thanks for promoting the word!

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  3. Christina Catanese permalink*
    August 20, 2012

    Glad to hear of others interested in sojourning!

    We recently heard that the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay is about to embark on a sojourn to paddle the length of the whole Chesapeake Bay. Follow Lou’s journey here: http://allianceforthebay.org/sojourn/

    Also check out how clean water advocates in the San Diego area are using sojourns and smartphones to map the health of the nation’s waterways: http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2012/jul/27/paddlers-transit-county-coast-clean-water/

    Pretty cool! Anyone else heard of sojourns happening in their watersheds?

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