Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

Withlacoochee The River

This Sunday morning found us watching all our neighbors pack up to leave before 11 am check out.  It was interesting sitting at the dining table eating yummy chocolate chip pancakes and seeing who did what in what order.  Soooooooooooo nice for us that we didn't have to do anything but what we wanted to.  Now of course lots of those people could have wanted to leave and go home back to their work lives, how would I know? 

But what I wanted to do was to paddle on that river I'd seen yesterday from the state trail.  Isn't it great how dreams and wishes can come true??  And quickly too :-)

We looked up the Withlacoochee River in both the books we have on paddling in Florida and they told us that the river is both blackwater and spring fed.  83 of its 100+ miles are a state designated canoe trail.  WOW-cool!!

The Withlacoochee River flows north and the paddling trail begins at Lacoochie park in the Coulter Hammock Recreation Area and ends in Dunnellon which is the town where Rainbow River campground in which we are staying is located.   So we decided to begin close to home and put in at the town boat ramp, paddle the river South and then float home North.   Sounds confusing doesn't it?  Well that's just what happened.   We got confused.

We drove the 5 miles or so to the town boat launch on Route 41  and put in easily.

The area around the town has houses on the banks and boats coming and going but both eased up as we traveled south down, or is that up, the river?
Lots of folks including canine enjoyng the river

Pretty sweet front yard

 Beautiful day, gorgeous river

We paddled over to investigate one of the many lily fields on the river

Lily in bloom

Lily after bloom - lovely in every facet

And then, which one is the river???

Well let's go right, that looks like the biggest.  As you can surmise, boat traffic had thinned seriously

There were still some houses along the banks but at more and more distant intervals.  This one echoed my sentiments exactly.

What's this?  Newspaper boxes at the end of your driveway??

Paddling down the drive which turned out to be a cul-de-sac

So on the way out we were still  laughing and wondering about the delivery person for this Tampa Tribune box.

David working hard to catch up after doing some investigating.

Great hat Huh?

Oppps.........we guessed wrong, dead end.  Where did that river go?

Oh well, it looked just as good on the way back

Saw this one legged dock dawdler

 Seems like a clear one lane path to me, doesn't it??

Rounding the bend for Dunnellon

The end!   For now. 

Tomorrow is our last day at Rainbow Springs so I'm hoping for an early morning paddle of the Rainbow River from the campground dock.  The Rainbow River flows 7 miles from the springs to end at the Withlacoochee and you can literally see the water turn dark as you pass from the Rainbow into the Withlacoochee. I'd like to start at the campground, paddle up to the springs, down to Dunnellon and back.  But who knows.......check back and see!

1 comment:

  1. umm...keep your eyes open for gators when you're in the lily pads please. You've got a lot more water to paddle. ;)



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