Monday, April 21, 2014
Sunday, April 20, 2014
Easter Sunday began at 7:13 as I strolled down the Cabin Road
I like this
My Protect Florida Springs tag is good until November, 2015. Unless a kayak is added to that plate, I may be changing.
Just made the rounds at the Palmetto Ridge Campground
Black crowned night, riverside.
Almost home, 7:43.
Easter breakfast was the usual. Steak, potato, onion and cheese.
Put the kayak in at the same spot as Saturday. Carried it empty, and kept my sneakers on for better footing. Went back for gear and aquasox.
Alligators began to appear before I reached the bridge
Limpkins near a small parking, picnic, fishing, launch spot.
This is a dead end. Deep down, I knew it was, but there was a huge alligator at the correct route.
I have seen it before. Or else two massive gators watch this narrow space. A curve, too.
48 49 50 51
It seemed an alligator, or two, was at every junction on the River
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But, the only thing I saw eating another creature was a cormorant
Saturday, April 19, 2014
Impressive zoom on the new camera. Canon Powershot Elph 115 IS. Spending Easter Weekend at Myakka River State Park. “Myakka” being the Calusa word for “many alligators” As George Washington said, “Don’t believe everything you read online
Arrived at the Park just before it opened at 8 AM. There was a line to get in. 8 cars. As usual, I got a Wilderness Permit so I could go south of State Highway 72. Half the cars were at the Park Road Bridge when I arrived there. I do not think I have ever seen more than one car this early. A guided tour outing. The outfitter offered to help carry my kayak to the water. I, of course, declined. I may have mentioned, and even posted a photo my last visit to Myakka, showing the road crumbling at this launch point. It has been stabilized with rocks. Resulting in tricky footing to the water’s edge. I accepted the gentleman’s second offer when he saw me looking for a spot to place my feet as I gingerly walked with the yak on my shoulder;
I have a new camera as the old Powershot Elph 100 HS has been malfunctioning. White blobs were alligators and whatnot should be. Does not happen all the time, but I have no way of knowing when it will happen. Still under warranty, I have to mail it to Canon. In Virginia, not Tokyo. I will do it when I get home. For now, I had two cameras around my neck.
First gator of the day
I had been concerned about the water level. Last year around this time, the Myakka had been too low to paddle. I asked the ranger when I obtained my Wilderness Permit. “It’s high. So high we are not seeing a lot of wading birds’ “High” is relative. No where near as high as it was last August. And, as you can see, I was seeing wading birds.
Some of the wading birds, in trees
More often than not, I paddle the Myakka on windy days. Not by choice, it just seems always to be breezy. Today was no exception. Out of the south. A good thing, as it would be at my back when I paddled up stream
Approaching the Myakaa Wilderness
As I was using two cameras, some of these photos may be out of order
The numbers are photo numbers, so if you see them, this Tale is incomplete
The channel is narrow from the 72 Bridge to Lower Myakka Lake
Lower Myakka Lake
Coming out of the channel I went right, and up a slough. Saw spoonbills here, once. None today, but I did see a pair of deer deep in the marsh grass .
Turned around, headed into the Lake. As I did, a bald eagle flew overhead.
Now exposed to the wind. I wanted to paddle to Deep Hole, the sink hole at the south end of Lower Myakka Lake.
As the Lake is high, I could stay close to shore, and somewhat out of the wind. And have a better opportunity to see glossy ibis, snowy egrets, and more.
I did the video with the old camera. A precaution against being bumped, and splashed by a gator. More likely, me bumping a reptile. Collisions were avoided.
I would have liked to keep paddling south, out of the Wilderness. The farthest I have gone is just past Downs dam. To it twice, past paddling over the submerged structure, last August. The wind convinced me to turn back. Now at my back.
Saw an adult bald eagle again. Once again, no photos. Spotted, and got photos of, youngsters
And, a black necked stilt
Back on the River, I saw 2 pairs of paddlers. Darn crowds.
State Road 72. Last August, I waited out a thunder storm near the embankment. The background in this photo. On the water. What you see in the foreground was underwater.
Speaking of crowds, I did not stop for lunch until 1:40 because the 1st two places I wanted to stop were occupied.
Paddled past the bridge, looking for roseate spoonbills. Just gators. And osprey
Landed at 2:40
Blew the strap out of the eye hole. Or what ever you call it.
Went to the ranger station to turn in my Wilderness Permit. And ask if my cabin was ready. It was
After unloading the car and stocking the fridge, I put the laptop in my backpack and biked to the Myakka Outpost.
New aluminum rental kayaks
Slow, but the view is nice. After downloading a few pics, I made the short bike ride to the dam.
Last photos of the day, 7:29 PM from the Park bridge. Back to the cabin to cook round steak, potato and corn on the cob.