If you've ever wanted to be up close and one with nature, then kayaking down the Neches River is your ticket to a front row seat. Join the Big Thicket Association during their first annual "Neches River Rally," to be held Saturday, September 6, 2014 in Beaumont, Texas. The event also coincides with the Big Thicket Association's 50th Anniversary.

This special occasion celebrates the dedication of the newly established Cooks Lake to Scatterman Paddling Trail as part of the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department Paddling Trail Program.*

The "Neches River Rally" is a 4-mile float trip on the Neches River that starts and ends at the Lower Neches Valley Authority (LNVA) Saltwater Barrier in Beaumont, Texas. Paddlers will have the opportunity to learn about the unique ecosystems along the Neches River including dense bottomland forests of hardwoods, cypress, tupelo and pine trees.

The area is also home to more than 200 tree species, 47 mammal species, 300 bird species and many reptiles and amphibians, allowing paddlers to experience the biological diversity of the Big Thicket National Preserve.

Download a registration form and get event updates on the Neches River Rally Facebook page. 

*The Cooks Lake to Scatterman Paddling Trail is currently a proposed paddling trail for the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department Paddling Trail Program. The 4-mile stretch along Pine Island Bayou, Cooks Lake, Scatterman Lake, and the Neches River is known for its sloughs and cypress-tupelo swamps. The area provides a relaxing paddle as logjams are not an issue, and river current is typically slow. The looped style trail eliminates shuttling since there is only one access point. Float time averages between two and six hours depending on experience level, flow rate and wind speed. The Big Thicket Association anticipates the trail will be dedicated on the day of their first annual "Neches River Rally", September 6, 2014.

Find more information about Beaumont's outdoor events on our calendar of events.