Sunday, January 30, 2011

01/30/2011 - Bay Grass

Launch: Shirley's (US Hwy 90 across from battleship USS Alabama)
Launch Cost: Free
Destination: Bay Grass Bay and Tributaries
Distance: 10.7 miles (round trip)
Paddle time: 4 hours
Weather: Cloudy with occasional light rain, 58 degrees, winds calm. Tide rising.
GPS Track: To view or download the GPS track of this trip, Click Here.

Header Image

1) The sandy shoreline at Shirley's is a great place to launch kayaks from - directly across from the entrance to the USS Alabama.

2) Not far away is the Maritime Training Center where potential employees are trained to work at the Austal USA shipbuilding facility, for FREE.

3) Calm waters and ever changing skies provided for some beautiful reflections.

4) It rained intermittently but a rain jacket kept me dry.

5) The narrows in the back of a Bay Grass tributary was challenging to back out of.

6) No worries about turning around in the wide open waters of Bay Grass and Spanish River.

7) There were a lot White Ibis seen on this trip.

8) This large bird was preparing for launch.

9) Just before sunset, a small hole opened in the clouds which added some color to the gray sky. It was like a reward for going kayaking on a dreary day. My thanks to the controller of the big light in the sky.

10) Paddles don't get much better than this.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

01/20/2011 - Dog River

Launch: Dog River Park (Formerly Luscher Park)
Launch Cost: Free
Destination: Dog River
Distance: 6.3 miles (round trip)
Paddle time: 2 hours
Weather: Partly cloudy, temp in the upper 50s, low tide, very little wind.

Header Image

1) The indented area is the official kayak launch site. Because it is mucky there with big rocks, and pilings, I prefer to use concrete boat ramps just behind the vehicle in this photo to launch.

2) The tires are still adorning the shoreline in front of these condos as they were a year ago.

3) The tide was pretty low on what started out as a mostly sunny day.

4) At low tide, many of the shoreline residents with boats cannot launch due to sedimentation causing the water levels to be too shallow.

5) Trash from storm water runoff is still a major source of shoreline pollution in Dog River.

6) More trash.

7) Sure was a beautiful day to be on the waters of Dog River.

8) Not every area is trashy in Dog River.

9) You can often see some Muscovy ducks in the Dog River area. Some consider the domestic ducks a pest, but in reality, they eat every insect they can see, including mosquito larva and cockroaches. Good duck!

10) Besides the un-American trash, you can see some Glorious things while kayaking.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

01/18/2011 - Riverdocs Launch

It appears the Riverdocs launch site is a hunter's dumping ground for animal parts.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

01/16/2011 - Bay Minette Basin

Launch: Buzbees on Bay Minette Creek
Destination: Bay Minette Basin
Distance: 5.8 miles
Paddle time: 2 1/2 hours
Weather: Mostly cloudy, temp 55 degrees. Winds calm.

Header Image

1) Paddling conditions were absolutely calm creating mirror-like water surface.

2) The bird took off before I could get the camera turned on.

3) Smooth paddling on Yancy Cut.

4) The cloud cover was thin.

5) Interesting wood formation.

6) Interesting bottle formation.

7) This plane was flying much lower when it passed over head. It might have been doing an aerial survey of the duck populations.

8) A party boat at Buzbee's Landing was leaving an unhealthy trail of noxious fumes.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

01/15/2011 - Whiskey Ditch

Launch: Riverdocs on the Causeway (northeast of Ed's Seafood Shack)
Destination: Whiskey Ditch
Distance: 5.7 miles
Paddle time: A little over 2 hours
Weather: Mostly sunny, temp in the 60s. 5-10 mph winds. A beautiful day.

Header Image

1) Water levels were quite low at the launch site.

2) A couple of playful otters came swimming up to me in Whiskey Ditch.

3) Shore birds were taking advantage of the low tide.

4) Another shoreline bird.

5) It was suppose to be cloudy all day. Except for a brief line of clouds passing by, it was sunny all day.

6) The bandits were out.

7) A diving duck surfaced right next to the kayak and immediately took off running on the water.

8) A few minutes later the diving duck was on the mud bank playing dead as I paddled by.

9) It is hard to see big herons unless they move because they blend in so well with the dried vegetation.

10) Some hunters left a disgusting pig souvenir at the launch site. The only part it appears they took was the pigs head.