Thursday February 3rd 2022
The weather is back on the warmer side of normal. The wind is out of the south and southeast supporting a high temperature near eighty degrees. Overall it was a beautiful copy of yesterday.
My daily pattern has been set. After breakfast I take my first hike of the day. The middle of the day is dedicated to getting a few chores completed around my RV home. Before sunset I take another hike down to the river.
The river is much busier with kayak traffic this year than it was last year. The difference is probably because the shuttle service from the end of the Silver River back to the head water at Silver Springs is running again. Last year it was shutdown do to the pandemic. Most people kayak downriver from the springs to Ray Wayside Park, a county run boat launch area, near the confluence with the Ocklawaha River. The current in the river is very strong making the paddle down river mostly a float trip, but the up river paddle must be a real challenge.
You can rent kayaks and arrange for the shuttle service at Silver Springs. I don’t have enough confidence in my kayak skills to do the 5.3 mile paddle alone, but would do it in a minute if I had a kayak buddy. The wildlife viewing along the river is incredible. In addition to all the water birds, you can see alligators, manatee, turtles and monkeys. From one or two places on the bank, you have to see what comes to you. On a paddle down the river, you have and opportunity to see them all. I plan to stop at the rental facility in the next couple of days to investigate further.