Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Like many early attractions, it is now a state park. Over the years Silver Springs was used as the backdrop for early Tarzan movies, and also appeared in Creature from the Black Lagoon, among other films. The park has many other components; a camping area, an outdoor stage, a reconstructed village (open on weekends only) the boat tours and smaller museums. Also off to the side is a canoe/kayak rental and launch. The launch (and the boat tours) are an additional fee to the park entrance.
The launch is in a corner of the parking lot, away from the main entrance. It leads on to a small channel, like that shown above. (This picture was taking coming back along a connecting channel.) Spanish moss dripping from live oak, adds a certain serenity to the trip.
We paddled by a variety of springs, some are known for their depth, or for their use in movies or TV scenes; one has a boat sunk into it, others are known for attracting turtles.
We did see lots of turtles and fish though.
And several birds, including these ibis.
The loop we did was just under two miles, pretty short, but considering we got to travel over several springs (in many parks the more active springs are roped off for swimming), see all sorts of scenery and wildlife, plus enjoy a shady paddle, it felt like a great deal. Those seeking longer paddles can head down Silver Springs River. Though you may not be able to get all the way to Palotka anymore, you can certainly paddle a number of miles.
Wikipedia Silver Springs Park
Map of Florida Springs
Florida State Parks information about Silver Springs
Summary: Entrance to the park $8, launch fee $4 per boat, kayak and canoe rental's available. Portapotty by boat ramp, flush toilets in the park. Glass bottom boat tours are an additional fee. Displays, and food available in the park. The park sometimes shuts early for concert events. Two mile loop with gentle current, longer trips available down the river.
Monday, October 27, 2014
Why no kayaks? Because we weren't planning any big trips and having kayaks with us meant always keeping them on the roof. Besides our kayaks are meant for big water and we were headed for shallow bays and narrow springs.
We drove as fast as was comfortable to Florida, spent some time there and drove back a little slower and more randomly. Which was grea,t because that gave us a chance to meet Durhamblogger; Mike and his lovely wife, Rachel!
how-to posts and gear reviews. It's obvious that he is an avid kayaker, but you might not guess that it was his wife, Rachel, who talked him into getting that first kayak. It was a terrific visit!
Now we're back home and in the midst of catching up on all sorts of miscellaneous work/house chores. We've got all our pictures stored on the computer, so I just need to sort out what to report from the thirteen paddle adventures and 200 plus photos.
Tonight I'll just post one more picture: a portrait of Carl the venomous Coral Snake:
"Red touch yellow; kill a fellow"
(There may be more to it than that, but it didn't seem as important.)
Finally it's proved useful! Without that rhyme I surely would have picked up and cuddled Carl, but because I had it memorized, I just kept my distance and let him go his own way!
Saturday, October 18, 2014
But there are lots of mallards. These ducks are hoping for some food.
Friday, October 10, 2014
This may not surprise you, but it's a lot easier to get pictures when you're not in a kayak. This is especially true if not being in a kayak means you can use a camera you wouldn't dare take on the water because it's not particularly waterproof.
|Cormorant- just noticed the ripples line up with some ruffled neck feathers|
Essex Woods is near the Bangor Dog Park, so in addition to runners, walkers and birders, expect to see lots of dog walkers. You might even meet John and Kelley, of Hiking in Maine with Kelley, who provides this nice map with his posting.