Thursday, April 27, 2017

Paddling the Estero River

There is a boat ramp at the Koreshan State Historical Site – paddling about 4 miles to the west will lead to the Gulf of Mexico, but I headed upstream instead.  The river doesn’t have much of a current; at this part it seems to be more affected by the ebbing of the tide than river flow.

Paddling by
Heading Upstream

Pretty tree-1With a couple hours to kill before dinner time, Tina dropped me at the boat launch for a short trip before the evening rains came.  My plan was to head upstream for about 1/2 of a mile, but as I approached the bridge that marked my turnaround point I passed someone who told me there was a family of manatee’s up ahead.

Well, I couldn’t cut my trip short without seeing them, so I headed upstream a little further and eventually saw a mother and baby eating plants on the edge of the river.  Even though I kept my distance they went underwater and swam away almost as soon as they heard my paddles.  After turning around, I just drifted with the current until I saw them again. 

Manatee having lunch

Rainy River-2This time, without paddles to disturb them, I was able to watch them for a few minutes as I drifted by.  Momma kept her baby on the shore side for protection, so I didn’t get to see the young one from here.  I could see her eating the plants along the river though.

Along the way back, the afternoon rains finally came.  Not a big downpour, but just enough to keep the temperature down.  The rain seemed to really excite the fish – there were a few jumping before the rains came, and I saw a bunch more on the way back. 

This was a great little paddling trip; I recommend it to anyone in the area.  Kayaks (both sing and tandem) and canoes can be rented at the ranger station at the site entrance.

More photos are in the Gallery

Getting ready to launch
Preparing to leave
River view-1
River View
Rainy River-1
Rain on the RIver

Bluegrass Paddling the Estero River (Koreshan St. Historical Site)

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