Launch: Public boat ramps in Bayou La Batre. Launch Cost: Free. Route: Up Bayou La Batre about 5 miles and back. Distance: 10.6 miles. Average Speed: 2.9 mph. Time: Approx 3.5 hrs. Pace: Slow. Weather: Cloudy, 65 degrees with 20-25 mph winds from the east, 60 percent humidity, and current and tide minimal. I wanted to kayak at Dauphin Island today, but wind and waves were not suitable for testing out a new kayak. Bayou La Batre was the safer choice.
Today, I am again testing out the Hobie Adventure.
(1) Above left. Shrimp boat Cap’n Wade, the one they were pulling last weekend, is finally in the water. (2) Above right. In the upper end of Bayou La Batre, the water has a greenish tint and the banks of the bayou are high. Looking at these waters, it is hard to believe the wind is blowing strong in the tree tops.
(3) Above left. A very sweet smelling flower, Wisteria, filled the air with the aroma of spring. (4) Above right. You usually have to look high to see this flower, Trumpet Creeper.
(5) Above left. The mallard family provided plenty of entertainment. I spent about 30 minutes watching them and wish I had brought binoculars. (6) Above right. This snake was perched out on some limbs about 3 feet above the water. It sure has a unique smile.
(7) Above left. This is a typical scene at the mouth of Bayou La Batre – shore birds, trash on the banks, and stranded shrimp boats. (8) Above right. On the way back to the launch site, I decided to help out the boater on the left whose fuel line got fouled up. I pedaled hard while holding on the side of their boat. They were impressed that the little pedal boat was able to push them to the boat ramps so swiftly. The boat on the right didn’t bother to help their stranded fellow boater.
(9) Above left. The Hobie Adventure took me up the bayou swiftly where I slowed down and paddled or just drifted, listening to the sounds of nature and enjoying a quiet stream. This was a berry good trip. (10) Above right. As I was leaving, the duck turned to me and shouted, “Nice kayak! Bye-bye. See you next trip.”