Hillsborough River canoe trip April 2009

Hillsborough River Canoe Trip

April 18, 2009

Trout Creek to Rotary Park – Appx 5 miles


After a crazy morning we put in at Trout Creek ramp at Wilderness Park near Morris Bridge and Fletcher Ave in Tampa about 10:30 am. My hopes were high that we would see lots of wildlife but the time of day could have been against us. The weather was agreeable and not too hot, so we got lucky! We only got about 100 yards down the river and we started seeing alligators and lots of birds. The first gator was very young and we almost missed the sighting completely! The river was moving very slow and even after 2 inches of rain a few days before, the river was pitifully low. In most places the water was very clear enabling us to see many species of fish, including bass, gar, pan-fish, minnows and suckerfish. The number of birds that we were able to identify and photograph was another joy. As the river widened near USF there were so many out on the flats feeding. It was there I saw my favorite catch of the day. On the shore just before USF there were 3 HUGE male turkeys. I did not see any hunting season…but here right in front of me not 20 feet away. These old boys were not a bit scared of us in the canoe at all and just milled about letting us take photos. I was also happy to get photos of the spoonbills and glossy ibis that were feeding on the river. After we passed USF we floated into more of a residential area. The river there is lined with houses and docks and boats. The sad thing is the river is so low we barely floated the canoe through places! The boats on the shore might as well have been sitting on land as they will not be able to be used until well after the rains start. After a few more gator sightings and a couple more bird our trip was over. As we pulled into Rotary Park we realized that out 2-3 hour trip took 5. There was mumbling from persons on the shore about the river being stagnant since the bypass canals built. A young boy on the dock was fishing – trying to see if he could bring in anything on his line. As we loaded the canoe on the truck we were able to get the blood flowing back to our butts and reminisce on our day. How blessed we are to be able to share beautiful days like this with like-minded friends and so many of Gods creatures. You should come along sometime….

About notacluegal

Jeanene was born in Pittsburgh, PA. As a young child her family was very active in the outdoors. Things changed when her parents decided to travel down different paths in life and with that decision so went many of the opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. Being lucky to live in the suburbs Jeanene always had a backyard to play in and loved being outdoors. As the years passed she took every opportunity to be outdoors. She bought land in Tennessee and as a single mom moved her young daughter to the mountains. The were many life lessons learned on that mountain. There was no plumbing on the property – or even a house, but that did not stop her. She learned to live off of what was available and built her own cabin from the trees on her property. Those were rough years but the most rewarding. Now Jeanene resides in Tampa, Fl. and works as an office manager full time….but still yeans to be outdoors. Jeanene started “Not a Clue Adventures” to teach everyone she could how wonderful the outdoors are! That camping and fishing and hiking can be done by everyone and at many different levels. Single mom’s no longer have to be afraid to take their sons and daughters outdoors. By working with young couples, single parents and even seniors, she gets to teach others about her love for the outdoors and hopes to open their eyes to new adventures. In 2009, Jeanene completed certification as a Leave No Trace Instructor. She also works closely with the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF), Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) and the Florida State Parks. Jeanene is also certified in First Aid/Adult CPR.
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1 Response to Hillsborough River canoe trip April 2009

  1. Sandra says:

    Jeanene if I was there, I would come along on every trip you take but …….I am not. You got some wonderful photo\’s while you were out and what a variety. The adrenalin must have been pumping to see so much activity. What a fan-bloody-tastic day!Sandra

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