Tag Archives: Rodman Dam

Ocklawaha River – January 20, 2016

A fantastic, albeit chilly at the start, paddle on the lower Ocklawaha River.  But we were all prepared for the cold and it warmed up about 30 degrees through the day – from about 35 degrees when we arrived to over 65 degrees when we took out.  It DOES get cold in Florida, it just usually doesn’t last very long.  This was the first trip where I tried adding a layer of closed-cell foam (a cheap camp sleeping pad) in the bottom of my kayak and my legs and feet stayed cozy warm once on the water.

We paddled from the Rodman Dam canoe launch to Johnson Landing boat ramp on SR 19 – about 8 miles.  Sunshine and deep blue skies made a wonderful backdrop for all the white birds.  We saw lots of gators, Great Blue Heron, Great Egrets – one in early breeding plumage, a Bald Eagle or two, Wood Storks and loads and loads of Ibis.  Those who cancelled due to the predicted cold missed a really spectacular trip.

5 of us bundled against the cold, but enjoying the wildlife sightings along the Ocklawaha.

Five of us bundled against the cold, but enjoying the wildlife sightings along the Ocklawaha.

Great Blue Heron all scrunched up in the cold. Standing on one leg to warm up his other tootsies.

Great Blue Heron all scrunched up in the cold. Standing on one leg to warm up his other tootsies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Swamp lily or String Lily (Crinum americanum)

When is a lily not a lily? When it’s a Swamp Lily aka String Lily (Crinum americanum) which is an Amaryllis.

By the afternoon a few gators were crawling out onto sunny logs to warm up.

By the afternoon a few gators were crawling out onto sunny logs to warm up.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

American White Ibis. This was only 1 tree, there were many trees just loaded with Ibis.

American White Ibis. This was only 1 tree, there were many trees just loaded with Ibis.

And as we paddled along, they would all take flight - traveling a little ways down the river, where they would would repeat the process 5 minutes later.

And as we paddled along, they would all take flight – traveling a little ways down the river, where they would would repeat the process 5 minutes later.