The TECHE Project announced that the installation of a floating dock in Baldwin is now complete. The TECHE Project and the Town of Baldwin officially opened the paddle trail access dock on August 26.
The dock installation was implemented via a grant from the Federal Highway Administration's Recreational Trails Program administered through the Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism, according to a TECHE Project release. As planned, the Bayou Teche Paddle Trail will have a total of 15 official access points for paddle trips, with paddle destinations in communities along the bayou as short as five miles and as long as 12 miles. The trail lies parallel with the state's Bayou Teche Scenic Byway and is part of the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area.
Bayou Teche has the distinction of being the only National Water Trail in Louisiana and one of only 21 nationally recognized water trails in the nation. That honor was bestowed in 2015 by the U.S. Department of the Interior. Designation as a National Water Trail places the Teche in an elite group of waterways and will increase recreational tourism for the 15 communities and four parishes the 135-mile bayou touches.
The Baldwin access dock joins floating docks in Port Barre, Arnaudville, Breaux Bridge, St. Martinville, Loreauville, Jeanerette, Charenton and Patterson and is located at what is known as Charenton Road Park and Recreational Complex. It provides access to Bayou Teche for paddlers of all ages and skill levels and aims to fulfill The TECHE Project's mission to develop low-impact recreation that promotes tourism in communities along Bayou Teche.
Baldwin Mayor Abel "Phil" Prejean is pleased to see this addition to the park and invites all to come paddle to Baldwin to see the beautiful sights along the bayou and enjoy the town. "It is only 5 bayou miles from the access dock at Chitimacha Park in Charenton to our paddle trail dock, which I've been told is an easy morning paddle," he adds.
More information, including a full list of dock locations, can be found at techeproject.org.
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