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New Neches River Paddling Trail Dedication Set for Sept. 6

ent--article_ _media__contact">Media Contact: Stephanie Salinas, 512-389-8756, stephanie.salinas@tpwd.texas.gov or Shelly Plante, 512-241-9163, shelly.plante@tpwd.texas.gov

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AUSTIN— This Saturday, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s Executive Director Carter Smith and TPW Commissioner Dick Scott will designate a new Texas Paddling Trail in Beaumont at the premiere Neches River Rally.

The Neches River Rally begins at 8 a.m. with participants launching every half hour until 10 a.m. The trail dedication is set to begin at 11 a.m. at the Lower Neches Valley Authority’s saltwater barrier boat ramp at 6790 Bigner Road in Beaumont. A pontoon boat will be available after the trail dedication to take media and visitors up-river for a taste of the trail.

The trail head for this new 4.8-mile paddling route is at the LNVA’s saltwater barrier boat ramp and extends up the Neches River. After a left fork to Pine Island Bayou, the trail enters Cook’s Lake before looping through the Big Thicket National Preserve to Scatterman Lake and back to the Neches River.

“This looped trail takes paddlers through a moss-draped cypress-tupelo marsh in the biologically diverse Big Thicket National Preserve,” says Shelly Plante, Nature Tourism Manager for TPWD. “While the trail itself is relatively short, it can easily become an all-day adventure through oxbow lakes and marshes.”

The Neches River Rally takes paddlers though a popular paddling area of Southeast Texas. The Cooks Lake to Scatterman Lake trail has many scenic spots, including the Madonna Tree and a stretch through the forest in the Big Thicket National Preserve.

Entry fees for the rally include lunch, an official event shirt, a participant’s packet, and local entertainment.

For more information about the paddling trail dedication or to register for the rally, visit www.bigthicket.org, or call the Neches River Rally office at 409-790-5399.

For information about Texas Paddling Trails, visit: www.tpwd.texas.gov/paddlingtrails