A Gateway to Louisville’s Natural Areas

Our goal is to increase access to and use of Metro Louisville’s natural areas.   We focus on urban stream corridors which connect our neighborhoods to each other and to the Ohio River.  Click on the photo below or on the menu above to learn about the specific waterway.


Five teams from the University of Louisville explored Louisville’s five water related recreational areas: the Ohio River, Beargrass Creek, Salt River, Harrods Creek and Floyds Fork.  During the fall of the 2012 the U of L Honors Class “Exploring the Waterways of Jefferson County”.  We went canoeing and kayaking all of Metro Louisville’s waterways. The teams each investigated the cultural and natural history, environmental issues and recreational opportunities in each watershed and then formulated recommendations to increase access, interpretation and water quality.   The recommendations can be accessed by clicking on the menu above.

If you are interested in checking out some of Louisville’s rivers and streams,   below is an interactive map of  Metro Louisville launch sites, or click on the “Launch Sites” tab on the menu above to see more indepth information on each boat launch site.

View Metro Louisville Kayak and Canoe Launch Sites in a larger map

The class was supported by many different organizations and programs.   We were immersed in all things water for an entire semester.

All of the students completed the EPA Watershed Academy.   The academy is free and open to the public.  Check it out if you wish to become more knowledgeable about the science involved in protecting our watersheds.    All of the participants where also certified in Canoeing by the American Canoe Association.

The Context of Metro Louisville’s Waterways thinking.

The 2011 Louisville Loop plan

Project Win – Water Way Improvement now

The Parklands of Floyds Fork

The Beargrass Creek Alliance

The Kentucky Waterways Alliance

River City Canoe and Kayak

Kentuckiana Paddlers Association


The Louisville Community Boat House

Salt River Watershed Watch

The class’ work will be submitted to Mayor Fischer’s Task force on Blue-ways Recreation

and to Vision Louisville, an initiative to create a vibrant future for the City of Louisville.

Check out the Vision Louisville’s website:

What is your vision for Louisville?

For more information about the information

and or recommendations presented in this

webpage contact Dr. David Wicks,

the instructor of the Honors Seminar.

Dr. David Wicks



This site and the field componet of this class was supported in part by Together Green,  a fellowship program of the National Audubon Society funded by Toyota. 

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