Students studying outside the library

Unleashed on the water

My first time kayaking

Glendale 382x255
2016-11-14

SPARTANBURG, S.C. - Recently, my Environmental Studies 101 class was given the opportunity to go kayaking in the upper shoals of Glendale for lab. This was my first time ever kayaking, and it was one of the most relaxing, introspective and enlivening experiences I have had thus far in my time at Wofford. Under the direction of professors Dr. Amy Telligman and Dr. Terry Ferguson, and accompanied by a paddling instructor, we put in at the mouth of Lawson’s Fork Creek. After completing safety training, we made our way to the upper shoals.

We arrived at the upper shoals in around 20 minutes, all of us traveling in our own kayaks. The water was calm and navigable, which made for an extremely relaxing journey. As we traveled, our professor pointed out notable features that make the creek so special, such as rock formations and unique tree growth. As we paddled, the waves generated by each boat made reaching the upper shoals almost effortless. When we arrived at the edge of the shoals, we abandoned our equipment to begin our sojourn at this natural land bridge.

Dr. Ferguson and Dr. Telligman gave the class an extensive lesson on the Glendale Shoals Preserve and its crucial importance as a resource throughout history. A natural land bridge made of rocks, the upper shoals was used as a method of transportation to the area and enabled the harvesting of water as well as fish. Dr. Ferguson led us through the chronological history of Glendale, emphasizing the water’s use as a resource for hydropower as well as its ultimate damming and use in the textile industry. Kayaking at Glendale Shoals Preserve was something that struck me as being a quintessential Wofford experience. Our small class size made it intimate and personal, and the nurturing faculty here at Wofford enabled us to truly have an engaging learning experience immersed in our environment, right here in Spartanburg.

by Sheridan Kate Murray ’19