Dusting off a ‘diamond in the rough’

Published 10:11 pm Monday, April 4, 2011

To the editor:

The Suffolk-Nansemond Chapter of the Izaak Walton League appreciates the Suffolk  News-Herald’s coverage of our recent cleanup at Jericho Ditch Lane, as well as the support provided by the Public Works and Litter Control departments.

We were pleased to help clean up one of the most-used public access points to the Dismal Swamp, Suffolk’s best-known natural resource feature.

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The Jericho Lane entrance to the refuge is very close to downtown Suffolk and not too far from Suffolk’s new Visitor Center. The access road is very scenic and leads from the top of the Suffolk Escarpment to a parking area with a boardwalk and interpretive station at the historic Jericho Ditch (dug under the direction of George Washington) in the heart of the Dismal Swamp.

The undeveloped area (on high land) near the entrance could serve as a very convenient public contact location. However, encroachment near the entrance from residential development may ultimately preclude this opportunity.

The site’s historical, natural and scenic attributes, along with its proximity to downtown, make this entrance to the Refuge a real uncut jewel, a diamond in the rough.

Maybe since we knocked off a little of the dust, the jewelers will take notice now.

H.J. Miller


Suffolk-Nansemond Chapter

Izaak Walton League