Wednesday, January 7, 2015

1/7 Kayaking at Silver Springs State Park

Liz and Tina picked me up this morning to go kayaking at the part of the river near the old Silver Springs attractions.  Tina has two inflatable kayaks, but we ended up using only one.  Liz has a 13 pound carbon-fiber kayak, and I rented one from the concession.

Got in my rented kayak OK.  Attendant said to back in when I returned and he would pull me up and help me out of it.  I am worried about getting out because of my knees and my hand where I had the carpal tunnel surgery.  Anyway, off I go!

River is amazingly clear!

We are headed toward the tour boat area so we can float downstream and then loop back up in a smaller channel with less current.  There is a LOT of water entering the river from these springs.

Here is Tina.

And Liz.  Liz knows her birds so we relied on her for help identifying them.

It's a lot nicer once you get away from the tour boat area.  More birds and animals. 


One of the residents taking it easy on a log!

More residents warming up in the sun.

This is a tri-colored heron.  He looks a lot like a great blue heron, but has other colors on him.

He kept diving for fish, but this is the same bird on another log with some friends.

Easier to see the coloring in this photo.

It's deeper here than it looks.  There are actually many springs on this river.  When there is no wind, you can see the water upwelling because of the surface being smoother.  Lack of vegetation is also a hint of springs.

Logs and areas easy to get up on the bank seem to be in short supply, so turtles and alligators share.

This one was fast asleep and never opened an eyelid during his photo session.

Way back when this was a commercial tourist attraction, they built this "cracker village" and let people off here to explore. 

How many turtles fit on a log?  I counted 20 on this one! 
Unfortunately, there are no photos of me getting out of the kayak, but since I could not put much weight on my right hand, the attendant pulled me out while I pushed with my left hand.  Whew!  I can tell my shoulders will be sore tomorrow. 
It was a really nice float and slow paddle down the river.  Thanks, Liz and Tina, for encouraging me!   

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