Clean Waters

MountainTrue supports the development and enforcement of standards and regulations to protect surface and ground water, and we work to preserve and restore waterways as healthy ecosystems as well as recreational and aesthetic resources.

MountainTrue works to restore and preserve our waterways as healthy ecosystems that are great places to swim, paddle and play. Our Riverkeepers are the primary guardians of their respective river basins; and our members and volunteer maintain the health of our waterways by monitoring pollution and cleaning up our rivers and streams.


MountainTrue is dedicated to protecting our waterways and our mountain communities through a variety of programs:

Help Keep Our Water Clean

We cannot monitor, clean and protect Western North Carolina waterways on our own. If you are interested in volunteering with our water programs, please click the button below or email Susan Bean at

Volunteer Now

Look Out for Sediment Pollution

Sediment pollution is the top reason for poor water quality in North Carolina. If you are interested in learning more and becoming involved in the Muddy Water Watch, click the button below.

Join the Muddy Water Watch

French Broad River Paddle Trail℠

The French Broad River Paddle Trail℠ project was born out of the public’s desire to explore the entire French Broad River by boat. Now it is possible to do so, as the entire trail is composed of paddle-in-only campsites. The French Broad River Paddle Trail℠ is a recreational watercraft trail created and operated by MountainTrue and RiverLink. The paddle trail facilitates the public access to and camping on over 140 miles of the French Broad River, from the headwaters in Rosman, North Carolina to Douglas Lake in Tennessee.

Explore the French Broad

The French Broad River Paddle Trail is a great way to explore the river at your own pace. Check out the campsites and recreation spots along the trail and make your campsite reservation today!

Make a Reservation


French Broad Riverkeeper

The French Broad Riverkeeper serves as the primary protector and defender of the French Broad River watershed. The French Broad Riverkeeper works for healthy and safe waterways in the French Broad River watershed by partnering with citizens and communities. This Riverkeeper serves Transylvania, Henderson, Buncombe, Haywood and Madison county.

>Find out more!

The Watauga Riverkeeper

The Watauga Riverkeeper is dedicated to protecting, preserving and restoring the Elk and Watauga Rivers. The riverkeeper advocates for cleaner, safer water in the High Country through community involvement and local and state governments so that both residents and visitors can enjoy the Watauga River Basin. This riverkeeper serves Watauga and Avery county.

>Find out more!

The Broad River Alliance

The Broad River Alliance is collection of citizens and organizations working together to protect and promote the Broad River watershed through recreation, education and stewardship. The Broad River Alliance advocates for swimmable, drinkable and fishable water for the Broad River watershed.

>Find out more!

Clean Water and Riverkeeper News

2016 MoutainTrue Awards Recipients Announced

2016 MoutainTrue Awards Recipients Announced

MountainTrue announced the winners of the MountainTrue Awards, which were at the organization’s Fall Gathering held at New Belgium Brewing Company in Asheville on October 26. Award honorees are recognized for their hard work and dedication to protecting our forests, mountains, rivers and streams, and to promoting clean energy and sustainability.

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Tell DEQ to Stop Duke’s Water Pollution at Cliffside

Tell DEQ to Stop Duke’s Water Pollution at Cliffside

It seems like the NC Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) just can’t get it right when it comes to getting Duke Energy fix their polluting coal ash dumps. Time and time again we see the agency fall short of making the progress needed to protect our waterways and communities and the new draft wastewater discharge permit for the Rogers Energy Complex (a.k.a. Cliffside power plant) in Rutherford and Cleveland Counties is no different.

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MountainTrue Volunteers Help  Clean-up Section of Wash Creek

MountainTrue Volunteers Help Clean-up Section of Wash Creek

On Tuesday October 11, MountainTrue partnered with the Hendersonville Department of Public Works to clear a significant amount of garbage and debris from the section of Wash Creek behind Beacon Commons in Hendersonville. On the scene getting their hands dirty and helping coordinate the efforts were MountainTrue Water Quality Administrator Jack Henderson and Volunteer Coordinator for Wash Creek Rick Burt.

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Join us for the MountainTrue Fall Gathering at New Belgium!

Join us for the MountainTrue Fall Gathering at New Belgium!

Wednesday, October 26, join us at New Belgium Brewery in Asheville for our annual Fall Gathering. Expect great beer, delicious food and some sweet, sweet jams from Asheville’s very own The Midnight Plowboys. With our proud mountain heritage, beautiful mountain vistas, lush forests and rushing streams, Western North Carolina is an amazing and special place to call home. The support of our members has helped us fight for our communities and protect one of the richest environments in the world. Come and help us recognize the hard work of our members and volunteers, and to celebrate our accomplishments over the past year.

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Through Muddy Water Watch, volunteers go out hiking, biking, and driving to collect data about sources of sediment pollution. The data is used to work with the US Forest Service to repair damaged roads, culverts, and other sources of sediment to ensure these streams remain healthy.
After nearly a decade of work by WNCA (now MountainTrue), 11th District Congressman Heath Schuler, and many others, the long-proposed North Shore Road along the shore of Fontana Lake was put to rest. The people of Swain County were financially compensated in lieu of the originally promised road, and pristine streams, sensitive aquatic life and public land were preserved.