Edisto River Canoe and Kayak Commission (ERCK)

A Commission with a heart for protection and preservation

In 1989, the Edisto River Canoe and Kayak Trail Commission (ERCK) was established by Colleton County Council to be the designated county authority for the development, preservation and protection of the Edisto River.  For many years, Commission members served admirably by leading guided paddles, maintaining the navigability of the river, teaching river safety and raising public awareness of this valuable blueway through festivals, public relations, and paddling instruction.  Hopping in the boat a bit later, Dorchester County joined forces with Colleton County in 2016 to work to better manage this shared recreational resource through development of a recreation management plan, trail map, and this website.  Efforts to transform ERCK into a joint county commission are currently underway.  If you are a resident of Colleton or Dorchester County and are interested in serving as a member of ERCK, or volunteering with ERCK, please contact us! 

Find out about ERCK-led paddle trips on the Edisto!

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Charlie Sweat

Charlie is a founding member of the ERCK Trail Commission and loves anything to do with nature and the outdoors – especially paddling!  Holding many certifications in first aid and paddling instruction, Mr. Sweat has dedicated much of his free time introducing others to paddling safely.  He has also given back to his community through local government service and serving on statewide boards.  If you see a fresh cut on a downed tree in the Edisto allowing you to avoid a portage, you can probably thank Charlie!

Paddling the Great Swamp

Gary Hermann

Gary’s fondness for paddling is exemplified by over 50 years of experience on both flatwater and whitewater rivers.  He has extensive experience as a flatwater paddling instructor and has been a member of the ERCK Commission since its founding.  Though Gary enjoys his day job as a registered, consulting forester, he much prefers to be on the water.  He states, “”A day on the Edisto is a day of beauty, solitude, and calming therapy.”  Gary enjoys all sections of the ERCK trail as they all have their own unique characteristics.

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