2008 Okefenokee Swamp and Tampa travel blog

This gator watched us go by as we left the marina

On our way into the swamp

Another couple looks for gators

Cypress trees draped in spanish moss

A big cypress

It was quiet and calm back in the swamp

Two gators hang out

Cypress trees

Another gator checks us out

A group of paddlers went by while Henry fished

A line of cypress trees

This gator found high ground to catch some rays

This gator was doing a good job of hiding

This one found a log to rest on

Another gator found some high gound in the water lilies

Three gators

We saw a couple of turtles

We spent two nights at Stephen C. Foster State Park, 17 miles from Fargo, GA in the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge. Our previous trips to this park were in December after the summer drought. This time the water was up pretty high so we decided to rent an aluminum boat and explore the Okefonokee on Saturday afternoon. As we were leaving the marina we passed a boat with two dads and their sons. They told us they had seen “an army of alligators.” They were right! Before we got out of the canal heading to the river we passed a huge gater on the banks. watching us pass as if guarding the entry to his territory. The weather was overcast with a slight wind but that didn’t keep us and other boaters away. We saw many other aluminum boats, canoes and kayaks on the water.

The swamp was quiet and still. There were emerald green lily pads on the glassy black water. Rotted vegetation creates the tannin which gives the water the dark color. All along the banks were bald cypress trees draped with grey Spanish moss. The favorite place for alligators seemed to be high ground in the middle of the lily pads. The only thing that moved was their eyes as they watched us go by. As we got back farther into the swamp we saw butterflies floating from tree to tree. The wind picked up and the sun came out as the afternoon went on. Turtles perched on submerged tree trunks catching the afternoon sun. The wind kept most of the mosquitoes away.

Share |