Dave's Yak Tales

Cedar Key Sunset

Monday, May 28, 2012

Happy Memorial Day From Cedar Key

Leading off with the photo that has the most American flags from my traditional last day morning walk.  Four. Flying Old Glory in Cedar Key is not a holiday thing, its a 365 day thing.  I should have gone kayaking. No rain so far, as I write at 10:00 am..  Not to bad at the beach launch, nasty once you get past the protection provided by Dock Street.
I will probably go to the Wacasassa and Wekiva.
 Wedenesday morning. I did kayak Wacasassa and Wekiva.  But that comes later, first, view from the balcony at 6:35 am

I went back to bed.  At 8:20, out the door for a walk.  Two dolphins off the beach were too fast for me.

Dock Street
Pickled Pelican. Not waterfront, on the water.
Views from the fishing pier.

The place where I would eat on non-Holiday Sunday's , the Rusty Rim, is boarded up.
Street view of the Rusty Rim. It suffered a fire
There are two Gulf front boat ramps.  No sailboats at this one, a low bridge.
Flat water inside the bridge.
Volunteer Fire Department
One thing I like about Cedar Key is how compact it is.  A short walk takes you from the City Park Beach, to the Dock Street Gulf front district, to downtown, to the bayou.
A group out on their on walk asked if I could take a picture of them.  They returned the favor.
One has a brother living in Oconomowoc. As do I. Did not catch a name.
Close ups of the above building, the Hale Building.

Original tabby-oyster shell, limestone, and sand.
"Modern" red brick
City Hall, right, Library, left
Cedar Key Art Center Sculpture Garden
The Island Hotel. I went inside.
Hey, bubba, play Melancholy Manatee
Magnificent frigate bird, sun, kayaker.  No Chamber of Commerce has a better logo.

Back to Park Place,, but the walk continued.

The Nature's Landing nature trail. The old railroad bed.
Tide in. Just the prow, and not much of it,showing.

I wrote that the first photo had the most flags, with 4.  I stand corrected. 5 here, in front and down the street from Park Place. I saw a lot in a 50 minute saunter
I should take pictures of the unit when I arrive.
Less clutter on the balcony

From curb
To feeder
To tree feeder.  I'm sure the neighborhood cats appreciate the well feed birds. Speaking of well fed.
Left over beans and rice from Sunday night, add red onion, steak, summer sausage, cheese, I call it the Havana Hoppel Poppel
Check out was 11:00 am. The next photo is stamped 11:06
Tempted to put the kayak in.  Flat water in the protected launch area, but the flags give an idea of the wind.
One last look at my lodging and I left Cedar Key.
With the plan to go to the Wacasassa River. But, when I saw the sign for the Shell Mound Unit of the Lower Suwanee River National Wildlife Refuge, I made a turn north of State Road 24

Views from the dock.
Not a good day for an open water paddle, so I went for a short walk instead.

Views from atop the Mound.
Continuing the stroll.

This sign states, among other facts, that the "loop" trail is .03 miles.  Seems more like a linear trail to me.  The loop must include the road, with I walked back to my car near the boat ramp and dock.

I got in the car, and less than an hour later, was on the Wacasassa River.
Unlike Saturday, when the parking lot was full at 7:15 am, today it as nearly empty at 12:30.  I asked a Fish and Wildlife officer if there had been a fishing tournament or other event on Saturday.  No, just the holiday weekend.  He said the sparse crowd today was due to the weather.  And was glad I was going up River.   Whitecaps were downstream.
The tide was in and wind at my back.  The trawler has been there since my first visit to the Wacaassa River.  Not present, the large metal tank that was next to the ship.
Thanks to the high tide, I explored a side creek, until it was blocked.

Return to the River.

Confluence of the Wacasassa, left, and Wekiva  Rivers. I went up the Wekiva.

Another abandoned boat. At what appears to be an abandoned homestead.  More photos of that in a bit.
I paddled farther than I had Saturday.  This looks like a new river block.
This is what blocked me Saturday.  More water in the River today. Still got stuck, and had to push myself over.

Back to the site with the abandoned boat.  A retaining wall, which extends a natural limestone bank, a boat lift, and dilapidated buildings.
You may have noticed the lack of wildlife.  At least these damsel flies stayed with me.  Maybe other creatures were deep in the woods, out of the wind.
Not wild, but domesticlife.
The landowner must have property on both sides of the Wekiva.  I know I've seen these cows on the opposite bank before.
Some real wildlife.
Yeah, I was excited to see some turtles.  Not much fauna, so here's some flora.

Two other boats on the water.  One family group launching from one of the few docks on the Wekiva, and two guys in a jon boat with a trident, looking for gar to spear.  I saw both twice.  The gar hunters, the second time I saw them, asked if I saw the manatees.  I, of course, had my eyes and ears open, but had not seen any.
From the confluence, I went up the Wacasassa to the Levy County Road 326 bridge.

In addition to the ibis and yellow crowned night heron, I saw swallow tail kites in a couple spots.
I dodged the weather. I drizzled a bit on my way up river, enough that I put a poncho on.  That made me too hot, so I took it off, and the rain stopped.  The wind made paddling hard down stream of the confluence where the 2 rivers form a wide Wacasassa, but that is a short paddle to the ramp.
Which I wen just past, entering a little creek, slough just down River.

Landed at 4:25.  Not the smoothest landing ever.  A car and trailer were backing to launch as I was landing.  I rushed to get out.  I knew my leg wasn't right to balance the other, I should have regathered myself, but I kept rising, and fell.  The water was refreshing and I have a little hole in the heel of my left hand as a souvenir.
Last look at the Wacasassa from the car window.
And this puts an end, or a caboose, to my Memorial Day Weekend.