Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Gator wilderness

The clearest way into the universe is through a forest wilderness - John Muir -

June 16, 2012
10 miles
Starting elevation 72ft
Ending elevation 61ft

We launched our boats into the Altamaha River this morning. Just 19 miles upstream, the Ocmulgee and the Oconee Rivers merged to form the Altamaha. We have paddled both Ocgmulgee and Oconee on previous years, so it's kind of neat that we will continue our journey on towards the Atlantic Ocean. They call this river the "little amazon". I call it a very long lake. :). It is wide and big with many sandbars. Those sandbars showed proof of the alligators by the dozens of tracks into the water. It's safe to say that we ended our paddle today without seeing one. They were apparently in the water hiding from us as we floated by. Maybe they were even watching the flotilla of paddlers in puzzlement. Or better yet, thinking they were planning their next meal! With it being our first day, we will have many more opportunities to see them. Not that I need to though. :). I almost think it would be better seeing them on the bank as opposed to being under us!

About six miles downstream we decided to hike the Moody Forest nature trail. Why not get out and stretch, right? It was only a two mile trail full of cypress trees and spanish moss. And maybe some prize winning mosquitos and poison ivy!

What a great day. I will say we finished the day with sun kissed skin and a good appetite. :)

Monday, June 25, 2012

Travel day

June 15, 2012

Here I sit in my tent which will be called home for the next week. I'm organized and ready to start bright and early in the morning on the Altamaha River. A little after 6am today , Dan and I started what will be our 8th year paddling a different Georgia river. For 7 straight days we will paddle from Reidsville to Darien consisting of 105 miles. But first we had to get here.
Driving 4 hours to the launch site, we dropped our boats off and proceeded to travel 2 more hours to Darien to leave our vehicle for the trips end. Taking a charter bus, we went 2 hours back to the launching area and campsite. A lot of traveling and much easier than the average 8000 strokes a day we will endure. I'm ready, excited and filled with anticipation of what we will find along our journey. So far, it's mostly the gnats that have greeted us upon our arrival. But I'm sure bigger and better things await us. :)