(Asheville Citizen Times) Finding seven natural waterfalls on the 1,400-acre Seven Falls development would be a tough task.
It’s the gullies — some more than 6 feet deep — that stand out today.
Erosion from crumbling dirt roads and areas cleared for a golf course and other amenities has fouled almost two miles of streams at the stalled Seven Falls Golf & River Club.
Sediment covers stream beds throughout the development, said Chuck Cranford, head of the regional office of the Surface Water Protection Section of the state Division of Water Quality.
Instead of rocks and small pools, they’re full of mud, he said.
To Cranford, the changes that developers wrought on the land verge on tragic.
“Those streams, when they purchased that land … were absolutely pristine and just amazingly beautiful,” he said. “They were some of the most high quality streams that we had in Henderson County.”
Local, state and federal regulators have all cited developers of the residential project along the rolling hills of western Henderson County for violations of rules designed to keep sediment from washing into streams and to preserve wetlands and aquatic life.
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