Friday, March 11, 2016

Louisiana Swamp Tour, Part 1

I grew up in Louisiana, a state known for its lakes, swamps and the wildlife that inhabit them. I went on a lot of fishing and crabbing trips with my parents, but never a swamp tour.  I didn't have a clue of how much fun and photo opportunities I had been missing- until last weekend. I convinced my husband (who, by the way, has Cajun DNA) to take me to Lake Martin aka the Cypress Island Preserve in Louisiana.    I was only 9 days post-op knee surgery but I was about to go stir crazy. What harm could I do by simply riding in the car and standing for a few minutes here and there to shoot some photos?  

It was a little more difficult than I thought.  Standing in one spot trying to wait and focus on my subject was challenging, for sure.  After a little while of that, I resigned to taking my photos from inside the car, using the window for a camera prop.  That night, I read a brochure about the swamp tours in the area and knew that I'd have to try it.  Hubby tried to convince me to wait a few weeks until I was further along in recovery.  I considered his advice for a little while but my desire to take the swamp tour the next morning prevailed over safety precautions regarding my knee.  I chose to make reservations with Champagne's Cajun Swamp Tours because their tour boats appeared roomy and the chairs looked comfortable enough.  

Our tour was scheduled for 10:00 a.m.- I could hardly wait!
Champagne's Cajun Swamp Tours has a great reputation in the area.
The back deck and boat dock (Photo from tripadvisor.com)
Nice boats
A nice place to sit, relax and enjoy the view or a good book,
 or do some fishing off the bank, like this family.
Many of the birds enjoy fishing here as well (Great Egret).
Heading toward the marshland surrounding the lake-
I enjoyed the close up views of the bald cypress trees. 
Our first alligator sighting- his head and tail covered with swamp vegetation.
Many of the turtles soaked in the sun along downed logs.
Several people slowly meandered around the swamp in colorful kayaks.
Spanish moss dangles from the cypress trees and
gracefully sways in the light breeze, creating a sense of peace and serenity.
Water hyacinth densely populates large areas of the swamp.
Thick roots of the water hyacinth can be seen for several inches below the water's surface.
Small, round cones are produced by bald cypress trees.
Amazing how some plants can grow in the strangest places.
An alligator moved quietly along the water's surface
while another bathed in the morning sun.  
"Ahhh, this is the life"...
Don't be fooled-
he's well aware of his surroundings.
Several duck blinds are located in convenient areas around portions of the lake.
The water vegetation was more of a golden color on the opposite side of the lake,
and very dense in some areas.

I hope you enjoyed the first part of our swamp tour as much as I enjoyed writing about it.  Look for Part 2 within a day or two.  Have a safe, wonderful weekend!


4 comments:

  1. Super habitat views of the swamp. I'm definitely looking forward to Part 2.

    Have a grand weekend Susan.

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  2. ohhhhhhh now I have a hankerin' for jambalaya.

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  3. Wow, awesome tour of the swamp! The gator photos are cool. Happy weekend!

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  4. those cypress trees are amazing. great series Susan

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