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Trout for Cheat stocks river for last time this season

By THERESA MARTHEY

The Preston County News and Journal

ROWLESBURG, W.Va.  — Under sunny skies, but chilly temperatures, the final Trout for Cheat river stocking took place Friday.

“This is our last stocking for this year,” Trout for Cheat Inc. President Art George said. “We will begin again in the spring.”

For the fifth time this fall, nearly 1,800 pounds of rainbow trout were added to the Cheat River.

“We had some really large trout this time,” George said. “We had one that more than 10 pounds.”

Volunteers from the nonprofit and Mountaineer ChalleNGe Academy cadets formed their familiar bucket brigade from the truck carrying the trout to the river for release along W.Va. 72.

“The ChalleNGe Academy has always helped us with the stocking, and the cadets earn community service hours required to graduate,” George said.

Some of the trout stocked this fall will stay into the winter, due to the cooler temperatures.

The fish are brought from Indian Lake, a fishery in Elkview, making the nearly three-hour trip to Rowlesburg.

Trout for Cheat has been stocking the river for 16 years and relies on donations to purchase the fish.

Each stocking day brings a price tag of $5,525 for Trout for Cheat — around $50,000 annually, George said. He and the other members of the executive committee, Buzz Halterman, Jim White, Jon Hunter, Bo Burnside and Bob Martin, conduct fundraisers, seek donations and find sources of funding to keep the waters teeming.

George expressed his thanks to the Mountaineer ChalleNGe Academy cadets for helping with stocking this year, and Preston County Sheriff’s Office for helping with traffic during the stocking.

Anyone wishing to help can donate to Trout for Cheat Inc., in care of Art George, 200 View St., Kingwood, WV 26537.

Staff Writer Theresa Marthey can be reached at (304) 276-1127 or by email at [email protected].

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