Stories from the Suwannee Basin

11/23/2012 – Suwannee River

I'm claiming another river toward my "12 in 12" challenge, the Suwannee River, which I paddled with two friends on a leisurely trip Nov. 23-25. We went from Griffis Fish Camp, which is just downstream from Stephen C. Foster State Park, down to Fargo. It was the first overnight trip I made in the 10-foot Liquidlogic Tuxedo that I acquired this year. I am attaching a photo in verification.

I'm still chasing my 12, and this makes 8: Oconee, Ocmulgee, Altamaha, North Oconee, Hudson, Broad, and the Chattahoochee.

Roger Nielson

Summer, 2012 - Suwannee River --- 12 RIVERS IN 2012 CHALLENGE FINISHED!!!

Paddle #12 - I paddled the Suwannee in Stephen Foster Park while camping and 'gator watching!

Bobby Marie

8/16/2012 - Okefenokee Swamp

Paddle #7 - We were paddling out of the boat basin about 9:00.  We’d paddled the same section of the Okefenokee Swamp two years ago & were heartsick to see the damage from the fires since we were there last.  We paddled to Billy’s Island but didn’t see much to look at, so we only walked around for a couple of minutes.  We paddled as far as we could go without a permit & then headed back towards the park.  We took the channel that went towards Minnie’s Lake & The Big Water, but after about 3 miles we got to a section that was impassable because of the lily pads etc. We saw quite a few alligators & birds & a few turtles.  We really enjoyed hearing all of the sounds of nature...especially some bullfrogs.  I would have been content just to sit & listen.  We paddled about 8.3 miles in 3 1/2 hours...including our stop at Billy’s Island.  It was a GREAT morning for paddling.  Sunny but not hot & only a few other boats.  

Lonny & Rhonda Martin

8/15/2012 - Suwannee River

Paddle #6 - We had a driver from Suwannee River Outfitters shuttle us & our boats from The Suwannee River Visitor Center in Fargo to The Sill on the Suwannee...not far inside the gates of the Okefenokee Wildlife Refuge.  The cypress & tupelo trees were beautiful.  We expected to see a lot of alligators but only saw one.  We saw a lot of herons but not much other wildlife....not even ONE turtle. :(  The river took a few 90 degree turns, & at times we weren’t sure which way to go between the cypress trees.  We had to watch the river flow closely to see which way to go. A few times, we really had to duck down in the kayaks to float under tree branches.  We saw one huge hornets nest & a few wasp nests under construction.  We hit one small section of rain & thought the worst was over, but later we got caught in a DOWNPOUR!   It’s a good thing we had sit on tops, or we would have been doing some big time bailing.  We thought it was a 21 mile paddle, but it was only a little over 17, & we were glad.  It had just stopped raining when we got to visitor center where the truck was.  It was a nice paddle, but I was disappointed in not seeing more wildlife & not hearing more nature sounds.  We got out of the river just in time.  Just after we got back to our camper at Stephen Foster, there was a HEAVY rainstorm with thunder & lightning.  

Lonny & Rhonda Martin