Suwannee River Reflections- Day 4

Posted: March 5, 2010 by Sean Fitzgibbon in Expeditions, Florida Kayaking, kayak camping, New Years, Suwannee River, Suwannee River Expedition

All Right, on to Day 4 of the Suwannee River Trip. Sorry, a little late due to the fact of being at the Sweetwater Symposium last weekend.

Day 4 begins with an early wake up at Dowling Park Camp at around 6:15 a.m. to go get a hot shower at the famous portable bathrooms . After that I milled around a little bit waiting for the Jeffster to awake from his needed beauty sleep. The morning was crisp and cold and there was a slight fog/haze in the air. Jeff finally made some movement around 8:15 a.m. As we sat there in the chickee we decided to take it slow as we only had about 15-18 miles to paddle to our next camp- Peacock Slough River Camp!  I crawled back in my Cats’ Meow sleeping bag for about another hour or so.

At around 9:30 a.m., Jeff and I got up and fired up the stove for breakfast. On this morning we ate GOOD!! We each had 2 fried eggs and a healthy helping of Corned Beef Hash. The oatmeal was good but after 3 days of it the change was very much welcomed! We took our time packing up the tents, sleeping bags and gear. Walked it all downstairs(remember chickee on stilts at this camp) to the cart and pulled it to the landing. We loaded the kayaks up and set off down river for the next camp at around 11:30 a.m.

The river actually started to narrow in a little bit in this section and was pretty scenic again in my opinion. We paddled for about 2 hours, stopping to take a few pictures and get a quick snack on some peanut butter & other assorted goodies Jeff had brought. We began paddling again and paddled for about another 31/2 hours till we saw Peacock Slough River Camp on the Left side of the riverbank. Jeff and I made really good time and couldn ‘t believe how effortless it was, possibly because we had help from the current or maybe because we were getting stronger after 3 days of paddling already, or maybe the kayaks were getting lighter as we ate the food!  Another theory is that we were clicking along because we knew the longest day was over! Whatever it was we were MOVING!!!!

After arriving at Peacock Slough River Camp at around 5:00 p.m., we met the camp hosts. A very nice couple that stays there for about 3-4 months a year. I cannot recall their names.(shame on me) This couple is awesome though– they had decorated each chickee with a Pine Cone Angel and sprigs of Florida Holly, along with a candle holder made from styrofoam and a toilet paper roll, complete with paper flame that was orange and red glitter covered. Also they had some sort of Christmas Decoration on the front of each chickee- ours was the “Christmas Stocking Chickee”! They also had the County Park bathroom type – inside a building. They had Holly sprigs in there too!!! They had even decorated a small evergreen tree next to the bathroom building with Christmas lights and ornaments. TOTALLY AWESOME! We were there a couple days after Christmas, but it was still very neat and Jeff and I thought that if anyone had been traveling on Christmas Eve and stayed there; HOW COOL IT MUST HAVE BEEN- Just like home.

Jeff and I unpacked AGAIN and set up our home for the night. We got the stove going and boiled our water to add to our Mountain House Dinner- Beef Stroganoff- Yummy!! Jeff also baked a flat bread to go along with it. After dinner Jeff surprised me, and we enjoyed a desert of Dehydrated Space Neopolitan Ice Cream. Amazing how little sweets can make all the difference in your moral. Jeff, WE SALUTE THEE!

The rest of the night was spent checking in with the wives and children, a few games of solitaire and showers by both Jeff and I. Jeff and I also stayed up to talk about the paddle so far and reflect on tomorrow being New Years Eve and the New Paddling Year that was racing up on us. All I can say is a definite time to reflect on things past and present. We agreed that the two of us; were & are TRULY BLESSED!

Hope those who are following along are still staying entertained, and I promise to get Day 5 done on Monday 03/08/10. Day 5 includes the New Years Eve Party, GunShots, pots and pans, some coins, and a Blue Moon!!

Thank You, Sea Turtle Sean.

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