Monday, May 03, 2010

05/03/2010 - Dog River (Blog Post Number 300)

Launch: Hoppe's off Dauphin Island Parkway in Mobile, AL
Destination: Shore of Dog River, east side.

Header Image

1) You're not going to believe this, but shortly after starting this trip there was "aroma da petroleum" scent in the air and a funny color to the water. There in Dog River was a petroleum sheen north and south of the Alba Club and Marina. Members at the Alba Club said it had been reported and believe it came from up river. I called it in to the Coast Guard anyway. Called 411. Asked for Coast Guard, Brookley. It had indeed already been reported. 

2) If this petroleum slick was seen around an oil refinery, the authorities would be all over the place, helicopters would be flying overhead, new crews would be taking video with cameras, and there would be a segment on the news about it. Sorry, just another spill probably coming from an abandoned boat reported to you by a kayaker. No deep pockets here to justify any clean up effort or consequence to the polluter. Welcome to Alabama the Beautiful - hold your nose when kayaking and pray that the water skiers will disperse the crude.

3) The snails were all out of the water. Could it have been petroleum?

4) There are many little canals off Dog River that are nice to paddle in that they have a natural feel to them - it is like being in the wild instead of a residential canal.

5) There are some nice homes to see along the river.

 6) Rather than remove this abandoned boat (plants growing in it) while it is easy, the authorities will let it sink. In 500 years, all our waterways will be full of abandoned and sunk boats. How sad is that? I damaged my kayak yesterday on a submerged sheet of rusty metal from an old sunk boat.

7) Wild coral honeysuckle is always a pleasure to see, also known as trumpet honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens). The name Lonicera comes from a German botanist and sempervirens means evergreen.

8) Saw quite a few birds today including some herons.

9) A yellow crowned night-heron. Also saw a couple black crowned night-herons.

10) It is interesting to see the mutual trust between turtles and wood ducks. They both seem to have excellent eye sight because when a kayak gets near, they vamoose.

11) Alas, the trip comes to an end as the sun sets in the west.

12) Sunset on Dog River.
Side note: For those of you who do read the text under these photos, I have removed all the Cold Water links. Water temps are up near 75 degrees now. You can relax more knowing that hypothermia and gasp reflex will not be so critical to survival now if you fall in.

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