Sunday, May 01, 2016

Paddling the Econ–419 to Snow Hill Road (Trip 3)

I’ve made this trip a couple times before, and this time I thought I’d give it a shot to see what it’s like with the water levels low.  We haven’t had a lot of rain lately, so this made the trip very different than the other times that I’ve paddled it.

Interesting roots
Interesting root formation

I think the first thing that stood out as making this trip different from the others is that I had to beach the kayak in a few spots to drag it around obstacles in the river.  There were four spots that were not passable, but they were all before I arrived at the Flagler Trail footbridge.

River blocked-4
That yellow spot in the back is my kayak

The second thing that really stood out on this trip was the number of alligators I saw.  There were at least a dozen on this trip, and a couple of them were pretty big.  I give them a wide berth when I’m paddling by, but there was one guy in the middle of the river who didn’t seem interested in moving out of the way.  I just stayed back for a minute or so and he finally went under and swam for a deeper spot to hide.

Flying egret
Egret flying off

All of this was before arriving at the Flagler Bridge… beyond the bridge there were a couple of areas that were tight to get past, but I was able to get by without dragging.  I also saw no alligators after the bridge.  What I did see were a lot of campers alongside the river.  One couple had the right idea – they brought their lawn chairs into the middle of the river (about knee deep) and were relaxing and staying cool there.

Shallow river
Much of the river is shallow like this

All in all, this was another great trip along a great stretch of the Econlockhatchee River.  There was a lot of wildlife to see. There were a lot of alligators, turtles, water fowl, and even the fish could be seen.

Today’s Photos
(For more photos, go to the Photo Gallery)

River blocked-1 River blocked-2 River blocked-3
River view-1 River view-2 River view-4
Large cypress Obstacle course of trees River view-3

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