Friday, September 23, 2011

09/23/2011 - Paige Bayou and Bluff Creek

Launch: Paige Bayou Marina near Vancleave, MS
Waterway at Launch: Paige Bayou
Launch Cost: $5
Destination: Bluff Creek and Paige Bayou hoping to see some sandhill cranes at the Sandhill Crane NWR. None were seen or heard on this trip.
Distance: 9-1/2 miles (round trip).
Trip Rating: Easy pace.
Time Paddling: 3-1/4 hours
Weather: Foggy, no wind. Near high tide. Current less than 0.5 mph. No waves - waters mostly slick.
GPS Track: To view or download the GPS track of this trip, CLICK HERE.

Header Image - they have alligators in Bluff Creek.

A big Osprey Eagle nest in Paige Bayou on a foggy morning.

It took about 2 hours but the fog finally disappeared. This area will probably be stunning in a few weeks as the cypress needles are starting to turn to golden brown.

Southern Wild Rice (Zizania aquatica) was abundant along the shoreline.

Yellow Pond Lily with delicate markings (Nuphar lutea).

This Palamedes Swallowtail butterfly was stuck to the water and couldn't fly. As soon as it was scooped up on a paddle, it took off flying.

This small butterfly was camouflaged well in Spanish Moss.

An eastern bluebird.

I was using the paddle as a stabilizer while attempting to get out of the kayak onto the creek bank. Next thing I know the kayak shifted, all my weight went onto the paddle and then crack, the paddle broke and I was in the water. That was unexpected. 

With only half a paddle to work with, I decided to turn around and go back to the launch site. I was bummed out. See the sad face in the mud bank reflection?

On the way back I saw about 4 inches of a paddle sticking out of the water, picked it up, and it was a functional full sized canoe paddle. Exactly what I needed to make the return trip easier. What are the odds of finding a paddle within 30 minutes of breaking one? That's scary.

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