CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Beaver Creek, a popular fishing destination near Davis in Tucker County, has been polluted by silt running off a nearby Corridor H construction project, a nonprofit conservation group said.
Walter "Lon" Marshall, a carpenter who lives in Davis, has been monitoring water in the creek to help Friends of Blackwater, which is working to protect the region's environment.
"If we lose that trout stream, it will take food off of people's tables. We are highly dependent on tourism," Marshall said. "People come here because of things like the river, the ski resort and the parks around here. We want to improve on that. We don't want to see things go backwards.
"Our goal is to protect what we have and to try to make it even better. This town would dry up and go away if it were not for tourism. You don't want to destroy the thing that brought people here in the first place.
"Personally, I was for Corridor H. But I don't see the needed planning being done on the local level." Marshall said.
Judy Rodd, executive director of Friends of Blackwater, said the group is concerned about what the sediment running off the Corridor H project is doing to fish in Beaver Creek.
"The Department of Natural Resources stocks the river with trout, which would be killed by this level of sediment," Rodd said. "It is like a river turned to mud."
Rodd praised inspectors from the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection.
"For now, the pollution has stopped. The river is not as bad as it was. DEP inspectors were out there and told J.F. Allen -- the construction company working on Corridor H along Route 94 -- to clean up their act," Rodd said. "But we are afraid it might happen again. We want regulators to keep being vigilant."
No one at J.F. Allen was available to comment on Friday, but an employee who answered the phone said they would be unlikely to talk about pollution and Beaver Creek in the future.
Based in Buckhannon, J.F. Allen also operates stone quarries near Elkins.