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A Boat Ride on the Scuppernong River

At the edge of downtown Columbia, North Carolina is a boardwalk that follows along the Scuppernong River. Eventually, the boardwalk leads up to a dock. Following a tour guide, my mom and I were lost in a trance from the beauty and uniqueness of this town. With a historic downtown that was mere steps from a boardwalk, I had never seen a place like this before, and although I felt like I had won the lottery, my day had only just begun —I was about to take a boat ride on the Scuppernong River.

As we waited for the boat to arrive, we listened as our guide gave us an overview of the role that the waterways such as the Scuppernong River play in Columbia. 

The Scuppernong River has been an important part of Columbia’s history, and as a way to celebrate it, Columbia has an annual festival in honor of the river. Not only that but the Scuppernong River and another body of water, the Albemarle Sound, are both popular places for fishermen to catch Blue crabs. She finished her explanation by keeping with the topic of wildlife by describing a unique wetland located in Columbia called the Pocosin Wetland, which preserves rare wildlife such as the Tundra swan, the North American river otter, the Red Wolf, and the bobcat.

If I had been unaware of all of this by the time I had climbed aboard the boat, there would have been no doubt that I would have guessed that this river was not there simply for its beauty. As we left the dock and moved further into the river, the wind picked up and water flew past my face. Even with the occasional splash of water and my hair flapping in my face, I sat back in relaxation. 

Everywhere I looked, there were trees on the horizon and no houses or neighborhoods. The descriptions from our tour guide may have been playing with my mind because I kept expecting to look up and see a swan flying above the trees or an otter swimming up to the boat. 

The further we moved across the river, I began to become more intrigued by how far we would go and when we would stop. As far as I could tell, we were the only boat on the water, so we had the entire river to explore if the captain felt the need to do so. I was not concerned about this potential hour-long journey; rather, I was interested and excited to see what our captain would do next.

After fifteen minutes of exploring the river, the captain of our boat turned the boat around and began heading back to shore. I knew that our boat ride would have to come to an end eventually, but I still felt slightly disappointed as our journey came to an end. With the beautiful scenery and calm, quiet atmosphere this boat ride had given me, I reluctantly said goodbye to the Scuppernong River.

-- Caden Halberg


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