North Fork Moormans river
- This marks the parking lot where you can access the North Fork Moormans River. While I was hoping to hike up through the river on this tour, it was closed due to a stream bank restoration project since there had been a lot of traffic and this also helps the native brook trout that live in the water. Therefore, I will be touring down towards the Charlottesville Reservoir, which will be the next stop. Throughout this tour, I aim to make place, as Mishauana Goeman states in “Land as Life” by “relating both personal and communal experiences and histories to certain locations and landscapes- maintaining these spatial relationships is one of the most important components of politics and our identity” (Goeman 73).
- Over the last three years, this has been a place that has been meaningful to me in various ways. Not only is it a short drive from grounds, but it is an area where you can go and enjoy different places of nature. One of the reasons why this place has significance is because I go fly fishing here often. Fly fishing has been a great passion of mine ever since my father taught it to me at a young age. While fishing here, focusing on catching a fish is not exactly the biggest reason for spending time fly fishing. It is because it really allows you to notice all of the different types of trees, rapids in the river, bugs, animals, and other aspects that you might not think about when walking through grounds or other developed areas. It is also a great way for me to really be in the moment and appreciate everything around me at the time. As I walked down the North Fork Moormans River, I heard many different sounds. Immediately, you can hear the loud running of the water through currents over the rocks. However, as I moved down the river, I later hit a more calm current, allowing me to hear different birds chirping. While looking around, there are a lot of smooth rocks around, that lie in between the tall green trees on the bank. However, many trees have fallen either in the river or on the banks. I wondered how long these trees have been here and how this area might have changed over time. When looking down at the sand on the banks and in different areas, I noticed different footprints on the sand and riverbank. While most were shoes, I could tell some were animals like dogs that people brought to walk there or animals that live in the area.
History and Significance of North Fork Moormans River
- The North Fork Moormans River starts in the eastern area of the Blue Ridge Mountains in western Albemarle County and flows into the Charlottesville reservoir. While the river currently looks like how people might think it has for a while, it has changed over time. In 1995, a significant flood caused changes to the structure and banks of the river and the native trout population (North Fork Moormans River). It is intriguing to think how this river might have also changed at times before the flood occurrence. The reason for the name “Moorman '' for the river is because of Charles Moorman, who purchased land in the area at the intersection of the Mechum and Moorman rivers in 1735 (History Today). The United States Board on Geographic Names decided on this name in 1933 (History Today) . However, this land originally belonged to the Monacan, Manahoac, and Shawandasse Tulle Nations before settler colonialism occurred (Native Land Digital). According to research, the Monacans predominantly lived in the area of what is now Sugar Hollow. The Monacans spoke Algonquian languages, along with Manahoacs and Shawandasse Tulle, and lived in different areas throughout what is now Virginia (Our history). Furthermore, the Monacans were allies with Manahoac, and both were Siouan speaking (The Monacan in Virginia). While walking through the North Fork Moorman river, I thought of how many different experiences and stories this area has seen. Also, how the land has changed throughout the centuries.
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North Fork Moormans River, 2022 Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources, dwr.virginia.gov/waterbody/north-fork-moormans-river/.
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