Hillsborough River Report
(Morris Bridge Park-Trout Creek)


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Report By:  jlpaddle    Date: 10/24/2016 
Rating:Trip Rating     Photos: None     Map & Directions: View


Feelings of adventure and isolation await under a thick, green canopy as the river twists and turns the first hour and-a-half of this section. Then the river widens out. This opportunity to see a variety of different species of flora and fauna.

My Report:

Hillsborough River 10-24-16

Canoe Escape, Inc.
Information and Reservations (strongly suggested!!)
813-986-2067
Trip 2 - Morris Bridge Park to Trout Creek Park
Feelings of adventure and isolation await under a thick, green canopy as the river twists and turns the first hour and-a-half of this section. Then the river widens out. This section affords an opportunity to see a variety of different species of flora and fauna although not in the quantity that Trip 1 provides. As you pass Nature's Classroom watch out for the "trespassing" vultures. The winter months will provide you a glimpse of a staggering number of them as migratory vultures join with the year around resident population. You'll definitely want to "look alive" so they don't mistake you for lunch. This wide area of the river is great to view osprey and in low water times (typically May/June) roseatte spoonbills. Exploring Trout Creek near the end of the trip takes you out of the cypress swamp into a hardwood hammock. (You may see big George all 14 feet of him.) 2 hour paddling time; 4 miles 80% shade first 1-1/2 hours; then full sun.

This was a spur of the moment trip, so we rented an Old Town Loon (two person kayak-hopefully on reflection on the reenters) to do this trip ($53). There were 8 alligators, 4 Limpkins, tons of ibis, several great blue heron, lots of white heron, turtles, lots of buzzards (they stay in one spot on the river bank where the river widens), at least one stork and one kingfisher that did not give us heck for being on his river. Note: The limpkins were so close and ignored us totally. You could have touched them with a paddle if they stayed still.

The excitement on the trip was when we were ducking under a tree and going around to the left of a point. Sitting on top of the point was a 6 foot alligator, which got excited by our presence and in turn made us excited when it dove in the water just ahead of us. The splash covered the front of the boat with water. We only saw one other person on the river until we were ready to get off the water. The shuttle bus was there to pick us up a few minutes after we got to shore. The two things the trip was very nice, but too short and the interstate is close enough to see and hear in some places. There was a boardwalk and a couple of overgrown hiking trails near the office.

Coming from the north (Ocala): Take I-75 south to Exit 265 (Fowler Avenue) As you exit, the exit divides into east and west. Choose East. Go east on Fowler Avenue to the traffic light at U.S. 301 (approximately 1 mile). Turn left onto U.S. 301 North. John B. Sargeant Park will be 3.5 miles on your left. Canoe Escape is located in John B. Sargeant Park. (The park charges a $2.00 per car parking fee.)They do provide shuttle service for your on boat ($29.00).
http://www.canoeescape.com/map.htm
Closed Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve Day, and Christmas Day

Hours of operation: Open daily at 9:00 a.m.
Last downstream trips starts at 2:00 p.m. Latest pickup is at 5:00 p.m. Last hourly rental is at 3:30 p.m. Must be back at park by 5:00 p.m.

Get Map & Directions for this trip

Location Data:

Distance (miles): 4
Fees/Costs $: 53.00


Special Interests and Comments:

Special InterestsThere are other sections of the river and a state park with hiking trails.



Post Date: 9/1/2017

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