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Wekiva River Report
(Lower Wekiva River)

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Report By:  darkknight    Date: 12/25/2010 
Rating:Trip Rating     Photos: See 30 photos     Map & Directions: View

Another high quality paddle from Katie's Landing down river.

My Report:

Merry Christmas from the Wekiva River!!!!!!!

It was a non typical celebration for us. For the first time in 10 years since we moved to the states we spent Christmas Day with no family visiting us. At 10:00 AM I told my wife; Let us go out to the water. The Wekiva River from Katie’s Landing was my choice. It is close from home and we have enjoyed our two previous trips there.

We made it to the water at 11:15AM. This time we explored the area near Katie’s Landing. Remember the Glossy Ibis we saw on our first trip? Well it brought some friends to Wekiva. This time there were four of them wading around, and a couple of gators also along with it, Great Blue Herons, Great Egrets and mallards.. That is what we call a good start. After 30 minutes or so we headed North, down the river. At the Wekiva Heaven area we had to push our way a bit. Looks like the water flow there was obstructed by a fallen tree and a lot of vegetation was in the water. But not a big deal since we passed with a little effort. I told my wife to be ready for deer since we have spotted them in the area in our two previous trips. This time it was no different. A doe was right there looking at me. Problem was that I did not have the camera and when I was able to point it to my wife, who had the camera, it ran away to the forest so, once again, no deer pics.

Shortly after Wekiva Heaven, wifey was aiming at a small bird, and Eastern Phoebe, when I saw a bigger bird in the woods. We move closer trying to find the other bird when a Downy Woodpecker decided to pose for a pic near us. Of course I did not know what the heck it was until I checked the Cornell web site. It is a Downy of a Hairy but I am positive is a Downy because its size. A Belted Kingfisher was kind enough to pose for a pic and we took the chance. By the way, we found the bigger bird I saw. It was a Black-Crowned Night Heron.

We kept going down river and it was awesome. Gators, including a huge one in the bank, were visible and, better than that, picture friendly. At a river bend there was one up in the bank that we saw from almost 250 feet. When we moved closer there was another one near it. Those two made a nice pic I am including in the photos of the report.

We turned upriver at 2:00PM. This time we did not make it all the way to the mouth of Blackwater Creek . My wife was a little nervous because she thought it was getting late and we were to be paddling in the river in the dark so we put the “turbo”, which means that she helped me to paddle up stream. At one section she was trying to take a pic of a Great Egret when we heard the sound of an owl. As hard as we tried to find it as we paddled we did not and just when we gave up I spotted it at a palm tree. She forgot about the time and took some nice pics of it. On our way up we saw wild turkeys also. We made it back to Katie’s around 3:20PM.

It was a high quality paddle today. We saw just three boats, one with an electric motor at the beginning, and the other two were aluminum boats with their occupants paddling. Other than that we had the river for us. So, gators and lots of birds in the Wekiva River on Christmas Day made a nice celebration. It is not the way we used to celebrate Christmas but, hey, I am not complaining.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Get Map & Directions for this trip

Location Data:

Difficulty: Moderate
Location Type: River
Boat Type: Kayak
Distance (miles): ~4
Fees/Costs $: 3.00

Photos from Lower Wekiva River:    (Click image to view full size)

Sandhill crane No Comm
Sandhill crane
Tri Colored Heron No Comm
Tri Colored Heron
Great Egret No Comm
Great Egret
Ibis No Comm
Glossy Ibis No Comm
Glossy Ibis
A friend reunion No Comm
A friend reunion

Glossy Ibis and friends...

Gator near Katie's No Comm
Gator near Katie's
Great Blue Heron No Comm
Great Blue Heron
Flying No Comm

The Great Blue Heron flying away

Eastern Phoebe No Comm
Eastern Phoebe
Downy Woodpecker No Comm
Downy Woodpecker
Robin No Comm
Black-Crowned NH No Comm
Black-Crowned NH

The Black-Crowned Night Heron it is not a bird I see too often.

Belted Kingfisher No Comm
Belted Kingfisher

The elusive little bird gave us a nice Christmas gift staying still for a while.

Wood Stork No Comm
Wood Stork
Big gator No Comm
Big gator
Red Shouldered Hawk No Comm
Red Shouldered Hawk
Dinner time No Comm
Dinner time

A Great Blue Heron enjoys a meal in the Wekiva River

Team player 1 No Comm
Team player 1

The first of two gators we saw in the same area

Team player 2 No Comm
Team player 2
Gator team No Comm
Gator team
Small gator No Comm
Small gator

A small gator takes advantage of the beautiful Christmas Day in the Wekiva River

Barred Owl No Comm
Barred Owl

Rear view

Barred Owl No Comm
Barred Owl

Front view but the owl turned its head to us.

Turtle and gator No Comm
Turtle and gator
Closer look No Comm
Closer look
Juvenile Blue Heron No Comm
Juvenile Blue Heron
Adult Blue Heron No Comm
Adult Blue Heron
Turtle No Comm
Killdeer No Comm

Edited to include the bird name


Post Date: 12/25/2010

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