- Sunday, Nov. 3: WACCASASSA/WEKIVA
On this trip we'll be exploring a couple of the finest waterways on the Gulf coast, the Waccasassa and Wekiva Rivers. Launch time is 10:00 A.M.. The meeting place is about an hour from Gainesville. This is a round-trip paddle, ending at the same spot from which we launch. We're usually on the water for about 4 - 5 hours.
The cost is $39 for "wanna go" members ($50 for others). With your own boat, it's $25 for "wanna go" members ($35 for non-members).
At first glance, there's nothing to tell the casual paddler that Waccasassa River is born of the beautiful Levy Blue spring near Bronson. The tannin stained water speaks more of the Devil's Hammock swamp, through which it passes, than the artesian fountain at its head. Blue Spring is a popular watering hole that draws scores of locals on warm summer weekends.
The Wekiva, too, is spring-fed. Like it's sister river, the refreshing waters at it's source can be enjoyed for a price, but not for recreation - for consumption. A Japanese, bottled-water company bought the spring about 20 years ago and is now happily selling us water from our own aquifer.
The first leg of our trip will be up the Waccasassa. Starting out in the lower basin, we find ourselves in a swampy, river forest of cypress, red maples, and bay with lots of aquatic and understory plants in the water and along the river bank. As we make our way into the upper reaches of the Waccasassa, we enter a higher and drier forest of hickory, oak, elm, Florida buckeye trees and pine. Here, the high, closed canopy and occasional flooding makes for minimal undergrowth and good visibility for wildlife viewing.
This trip offers plenty of good photo opportunities with lots of flowers and a few giant, old cypress trees, whose large cavities and "defects" made them "unworthy" of the loggers ax.
After lunch we paddle back downstream to the mouth of the Wekiva. From there, anyone who is tired or has time limitations can head back to the boat ramp about 15 minutes away. The rest of us will head up the Wekiva and explore to our hearts content.
This section is relatively easy, although there are several low branches that require ducking and some shallow, submerged branches which might require scooching over. Remember, every duck and scooch is another barrier between us and the civilization (including motor boats) we are leaving behind. The hardest paddling on t
his trip is upstream in the Wekiva - but the current here is minimal. Nothing like the Silver.
The variety of habitats, all very scenic, keeps this trip from ever becoming monotonous. Just when you've had a chance to fully appreciate your surroundings, they change. Every season has something to offer in the Waccasassa area. This time o
f year, the Swallow-tailed kites are still around and lots of flowering plants are beginning to attract the butterflies which, in the fall, are thick.
** FOR ALL TRIPS **
RESERVATIONS REQUIRED for all trips! You can make a reservation any time before 5 PM the afternoon before the trip. HOWEVER, there's no guarantee that - a.) you will be able to contact us, b.) that there will still be spaces available, c.) we have not already left the store with the boats. The earlier you call, the more likely you are to secure a spot.
- All reservations must be secured with prepayment, using cash, check or credit card (by phone is OK). -
CANCELLATIONS: You can cancel up to 24 hours before the trip and get a full refund. After that, your payment is forfeited.
- If so, please Call us at Adventure Outpost (386) 454-0611
and we'll get your payment information and give you trip specifics.
- If you're not sure, write or call with any questions and we'll be glad to answer them.
- If not, do nothing. By not responding we'll know you want to pass on this trip. You won't hear from us again until your next trip notice.
18238 NW Hwy 441
High Springs, FL 32643
* No trees were destroyed in the sending of this contaminant free message, though a significant number of electrons may have been inconvenienced.