I hope you had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend. We spent our Memorial Day in remembrance for those who have died in our nation's service. We didn't do it in a especially meaningful or symbolic way, but in more a reflective fashion. My family of Funky Town spent the day on the river, canoeing. You might remember that we did it last year too. I guess it has become a tradition with our family.
We invited my parents to go with us, as well as my brother in law and his two boys, and Sister Sledge brought a friend with her as well. I always take delight in having children along and hopefully making them aware of what is around us they might not encounter on a day to day basis. Hopefully it will make them aware and teach them to truly take care of our world, because it really is so fragile.
It was a big crew this year, and we had such a pleasurable cruise. Perhaps not as memorable as it was scary as it was last year, but memorable in awe, as you will see.
(pictured is my nephew J with J Smooth, Sister Sledge in back with her friend T)
We loaded up mid morning and dropped in at Helena's Buck Creek.
(A rare pic of son, Bama, who doesn't allow photographs of himself, along with others in our group)
This was my parents first canoe trip like this. Many, many moons ago they took my brother and I white water rafting. They haven't been canoeing since. I was especially excited for them. I wanted them to experience the peacefulness and beauty at a pace that they could really take it in. Life is to short not to soak it up while one is here!
There was much to see on the trip. But what was most significant about our Memorial day trip was the large number of snakes who were out in full force....
I was involved in a "drive by shooting".
Er, photographic Shooting. (Smile)
And if we are being technical, it was more of a paddle by.
The snakes didn't pay me any mind. They were very aware of me, almost as much as I was them.
I was quiet and in awe of their sheer size. They were all giants!
But alas, I paddled on to the very thing I came for on this particular weekend....
The CAHABA LILLY!
You can see the grove ahead of the train trestle.
The lilly's are quite spectacular. And quite special. The Cahaba lily is an aquatic flowering plant native to the major river systems of Alabama, Georgia, and South Carolina. The best and largest populations in the Cahaba River are located in the Cahaba River National Wildlife Refuge. A type of spiderlily belonging to the amaryllis family, the Cahaba lily is noted for the striking beauty of its three-inch-wide white flowers. The lily requires a very specialized habitat—swift-flowing water over rocks and lots of sun. The blooming season is a small window, from mid-May to mid-June (or Mother's Day to Father's Day). It's truly worth seeing!
We paddled about 2 miles before we stopped along a rocky "island", created by the extremely low levels of the creek, where we decided to picnic.
The children had a blast with their nets, as they found tadpoles, crawdads and minnows to collect in their buckets!
It was a day of exploration & discovery for young and old"er" alike.
It's moments like this that I relish!
We didn't even bother catching this guy.
We didn't even come close.
We let him be as happy as he was.
And I sang in the tune of the Beatles song, "Let it Be, Let it Be. Let it be , yeah Let it Be!"
After lunch, we paddled some more.
I don't know what it is about having two bodies of water converge into one, but it's quite a thrill to me. As it was no different on Monday, when we paddled our way at the point of the trip when Buck Creek runs into the Cahaba River.
I mentioned the water levels being low.
It was very low. There were many points along our trip where we pulled our canoes and kayaks.
Or we allowed someone to do it for us....
The canoe trip is about four hours long, depending on fast you paddle and how much you stop to look.
At the end of May in the state of Alabama, it makes for a hot day.
We agreed to allow the kids, and some of the adults, to get out a swimming hole to cool off.
Why are ALLLLLL these people in one canoe?????
You probably guessed correctly!
Despite our checking the area..
Because of THIS snake (below).
It literally went after all of the people swimming in the water. Bama spotted the snake coming after them and yelled....Ive never seen people move so fast. Very scary moments...
We decided to move on.
And just so ya know....I wasn't crazy enough to get into that water!!!
After seeing how big the snakes were, I was positive that they could take on a big girl like me.
But kids....sometimes it is easier to be the lookout and let them learn.
And learn they did.
And walked/dragged some more.
(pictured below is my husband Big Daddy and our son, J Smooth)
To give you an idea at how low the water was.....in the trees is a Christmas tree. It was probably washed away or put into the river for fish. Because one man’s trash is a fish’s new home. Well, the tree is IN the tree, deposited there sometime ago when water levels were MUCH higher.
About 12-15 feet higher. It's not even officially summer yet and boy! We could use some rain.
The last significant rain we had came with the terrible tornadoes that swept through the state late April.
We also spotted this rock formation on the trip.
Just look at the layers!
It makes me think.
About how old? I'd love to know.
I am curious like that!
What a Memorable, Memorial Day.
I am proud to be an American.
And proud to be able to get outdoors and enjoy my surrounds.
And you KNOW....I LOVE to be on the water.
Being on the water makes Leigh a happy girl!
Hope today finds you Happy. And Blessed. And enjoying all that life has to offer.
I want to thank David Butler of Canoe the Cahaba, who does a fantastic job of small boat rental and supplies. David knows his outdoors and will offer suggestions and tips on making your trip the best it can be. This is David's passion, and it truly shows in his business. If you are interested in learning how you can canoe the Cahaba-or somewhere else in Alabama- contact David by email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (205) 874-5623.
You can also visit his website for more information on his services and trips: http://www.canoethecahaba.com/
I hope to see you back here tomorrow.
Thank you for taking your time to come by. You really mean allot to me.