The weatherman was correct. If you read my last Tale, you know I took today, Friday, February 12, 2010, off. I was thinking of camping, or maybe hanging out with manatees at Crystal River, or kayaking and snorkeling the Santa Fe River, or... but those plans were all washed out. Rain forecast from the panhandle to well south of Orlando. But, 150 miles south, the forecast did not call for rain until late in the afternoon. So, for the second time in two weeks, I headed to Jonathan Dickinson State Park, near Hobe Sound. I launched at 9:35.
Overcast, and a bit cool as I began, but as you can see, the sun came out. I paddled up the Loxahatchee, after first paddling downstream. Which I thought was upstream, until I saw houses. Which meant I was paddling toward the Atlantic. I turned around. Now on course, I paddled the wide, mangrove lined section of the River. No activity at the rental docks. I had the Lox to myself.
My solitary journey did not last. I passed two canoes, than 3, than two more. "I thought Monday was the holiday" "Its a school group" And a large group it was. It took a long time to pass them all. I think the effort wore me out. My arms are shot.
I passed Trapper Nelson's. Rental canoes aren't allowed upstream of that site. The vendor is probably concerned about damage on this narrow, faster flowing, log filled section of the Lox. Entirely different from the first part of the paddle. I began to encounter people coming down River. 8 to 12. Seemed like a lot of people for a week day. I reached the first dam, rested, ate a little, then paddled to the second dam. Saw an otter and a submerging gator.
Turned around. Several limpkins on the Lox
This looks like a shell mound to me.
Cypress reflection. Upon reflection, I have a theory on why elves wear pointy hats. Ancient folks saw faces in cypress knees.
Most of the people I had seen coming down River now came up stream, having turned around at the second dam. Second for them. I stopped at the dam, for a sandwich. Two other kayakers I had seen went a bit farther than the others, but now they, having paddle past both dams, turned back to River Bend Park. Looked like I'd have the Loxahatchee to myself for the afternoon.
The Lox does not have a lot of wildlife, at least I haven't seen much. It did get warm enough to bring alligators out.
I did see another otter. Maybe the same one, just a few minutes downriver of where I saw the otter on the way up. Wood ducks took flight before I could photo them. Air plants on a live oak.
I saw no one one the River from the time I left the dam. Not even the tour boat, headed to Trapper Nelson's.
I landed about 4:40, 7 hours after I left. Thought I'd have a chance to climb the Hobe Mountain Observation Tower, but the rain came as I was putting they kayak on the roof of the car