I took my nine and 12 year old daughters for their first canoe trip down Five Mile Creek, an area they know well from the dry side. Conditions were perfect with temperature in the upper 60s and a good flow of water. Several trips are available and the township has purchased the outfitting service and will be offering trips to both groups and individuals.
The water moves quietly past residences and a railroad track, but at times the flora obscures the surroundings and at these times the creek is at its best, with little creeks feeding into the larger creek.
The last portion of the paddle is through the historic mining town of Brookside, past bridges from the late 1800s that are no longer used. This area of Five Mile Creek is part of the Greenway Project that includes trails and parks along the path of the creek.
Historically, Five Mile Creek was one of the most polluted streams in the State. However, difficult economic times led to many of the polluters closing their doors and in the past few years, the creek has come back to life, supporting fishing and other activities. As a child, the rocks in the creek were covered with Creosote, today the stream flows clear.
This is a great alternative to paddling the Cahaba and its tributaries. Canoe rentals should be around $25 per day. Shuttle service is available through the outfitter located on the creek.
Hotels are nearby. Camping available to scout troops and groups along the river at the take out, maybe available to individuals.
Corridor X, or US 78 to Cherry Avenue.
Go right on Cherry Ave. from 78 to Brookside Town.
Outfitter is located at the Ball Park on the creek. From Corridor X, take a left onto Cherry avenue and proceed to signs that lead to the Town of Brookside
More information can be obtained by contacting the City Hall of Brookside