Land Between the Lakes works on water trail system

You may have a recreation area right in your back yard you don’t even know is there. The nonprofit Friends of Land Between the Lakes says many people don’t realize what they can explore on its lakes and rivers. That’s why it’s developing a system of trails on water ways.

Gabrielle Hilton has been trying to get her friends involved in paddle sports since she fell in love with kayaking this summer.

"I just like how peaceful it is, and I like to watch the sunset while I’m out there," Hilton said.

Friends of Land Between the Lakes says it noticed more people using the waterways to paddle.

"Now, if a person goes out there, they would be somewhat uninformed, so they might not know what to be watching for," said Friends of Land Between the Lakes Executive Director John Rufli. 

Rufli reached out to the National Park Service to get help designating routes along the waterways for paddlers to use. The National Park Service chose this project as one of 11 to work on in Fiscal Year 2017.

Honker Lake is one of the first designated water trails in Land Between the Lakes, and if you take a look around, not much makes it look different from any other waterway. That’s because Land Between the Lakes isn’t building anything new in making this trail system. 

National Park Service will be working with LBL to create signage and maps to show paddlers how they can get from point A to B on the waterways and what they can see along the way.

"We think by formalizing trails and putting out this information, we will see a significant increase in the number of people coming to Land Between the Lakes area," Rufli said.

Rufli hopes the trail system gets more people staying in hotels and restaurants throughout our area.

Gabrielle is looking forward to having some guidance as she explores the lakes and rivers. 

The National Park Service is sending professionals with experience designing water trails to Land Between the Lakes in November. It will take three to four years to map out the trail system.

If you want more information on water trails in our area, head to Paddlers Unite! To Find other trails in our area head to the National Water Trails System.

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