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Thursday June 25, 2015

Enjoy an Independence Day paddle with the Dan River Basin Association (DRBA) on Philpott Lake! DRBA's July 4 First Saturday Outing will be a 3.5-mile round-trip paddle on the lake in Franklin County, Virginia, from Twin Ridge Recreation Area to Deer Island. Philpott Lake is a blue gem, nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge and surrounded by forested shores.

Participants will meet at the Twin Ridge Recreation Area, Henry, VA (GPS 36.81512, -80.052794). Three Rivers Outfitters of Eden, 336-627-6215 orwww.3-R-O.com, will offer boat rentals and shuttle for the outing.

Coordinator for the paddle is Robin Davis, DRBA board member and avid paddler. According to Davis, "As I was growing up in Franklin County, we took advantage of the many campgrounds and day use areas on Philpott nearly every weekend during the summer months. The well-maintained facilities are outstanding and accommodate both tent and recreational vehicle campers."

The destination of DRBA's paddle is Deer Island, accessible only by water, where paddlers will stop for a shady lunchtime rest. Primitive camping is permitted on the island, by reservation.


 "Philpott has many access points that allow kayaks and canoes to safely enter the water to take advantage of the lake's multiple coves," Davis continues. "There are just enough power boats to make flat water paddling a little fun with occasional small waves. The paddle around Deer Island is on the southern end of the lake near the dam. I'm really looking forward to having a large group of brightly colored kayaks and canoes circling the island on July 4."

The Dan River Basin Association has a unique partnership with the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) at Philpott Lake. Under a cooperative agreement, praised as a national model, DRBA works to increase trails and recreational opportunities at the lake, which straddles Patrick, Henry, and Franklin counties. In 2011 the South Atlantic Division of USACE recognized the DRBA-USACE partnership with its first USACE Excellence in Partnership Award.

Participants in the outing are asked to dress in layers of quick-drying fabric, to be prepared for rain or wind, to provide boat, paddles, life jacket for each boater, lunch and water, and to sign a waiver.

To reach the Twin Ridge Recreation Area from US 220, exit onto VA 57A West toward Fieldale/Bassett. Continue on VA 57A West into Bassett. Turn right onto Trent Hill Drive, and drive 1.2 miles. Turn right onto Philpott Drive (VA 674) and continue 1.2 miles. Turn left onto Cedar Hill Drive (VA 603) and continue for 1.9 miles. Turn left onto VA 798 (Knob Church Road) and drive for 0.9 miles. Turn right to stay on Knob Church Road for another 1.0 mile. Turn left onto VA 624 (Twin Ridge Marina Road). The destination is on the right.

From Stuart, drive north on US 58. Turn right onto VA 8 for 4.0 miles. Turn right onto VA 57 East (Fairystone Park Hwy) for 14.7 miles. Turn left onto Trent Hill Drive, and drive 1.3 miles. Turn left onto Philpott Drive (VA 674) and follow the above directions.

Outings and meetings of the Dan River Basin Association are open to the public without charge.

 For more information about the outing, contact trip coordinator Robin Davis,robin0724@hotmail.com540-420-8028.

 For information about the Dan River Basin Association, visit www.danriver.org.

Tags: Boating, , , , Paddling, Philpott Lake