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First excursion in the China Syndrome.

jdupre'

Well-Known Member
Sep 9, 2007
2,114
3
South Louisiana
Went out today about a mile from my deserted hometown. Went down Grand Bayou to an old oilfield canal. At the end of the canal, I noticed somewhat of an opening I'd never noticed before. Keep in mind I spent my childhood and teenage years living in a boat in these bayous. Never saw this little slough before. At some points it was 6 feet between the weedbeds. Seems like someone else found it, though. There were two fairly new tree stands in there. Saw the splashes and swirls of about 20 gators within feet of the boat. Up to 8-9 footers don't bother me. I don't begin to worry until I here something like a 1000 lb horse splashing in the water. 11-13 footers start to bother me.

The boat handled the 3 mile round trip with little effort. Cruises about 3.5 mph with no bow sway. Glide was pretty good. Plenty stable at 25" bottom. By a stroke of good luck, I put one of the bottom ribs in just about the right place for me heels to push off of while paddling. I may put some foot braces in later, though.

I forgot to get a pick of the small slough. The first pic is the "big" main channel.

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oldsparkey

Well-Known Member
Aug 25, 2003
10,049
54
76
Central , Florida
www.southernpaddler.com
I can see a lot of happy days of paddling in a beautiful territory in your future.
The gators around here that use to worry me are the ones on the higher river banks that I didn't see till they come down from them and I'm in their way. Learned a long time ago , Don't hug the shore line.
 

oldsparkey

Well-Known Member
Aug 25, 2003
10,049
54
76
Central , Florida
www.southernpaddler.com
Chuck, what we call high river (or bayou) banks are about a foot high.
Our rivers actually have some high ones but not along the whole river just in spots. They vary from 5 or 6 feet to 50 on different rivers. The higher ones are from the central part north.
Here on the Econ there are a couple in the 30 foot range and then down to water level or just above it. I was filming the river and was hugging the shore line to stay out of the wind while filming . The bank on the right was about 15 feet high and as I was paddling along down came a gator from the top of it. He slide right between my canoe and the bank , under the canoe and into the deep water. The camera on a tripod just in front of me I managed to grab the tripod and balance the canoe at the same time. 1 foot closer the the bank and he would of been in the canoe with the camera , camping gear and myself. G;lad he didn'y want to join me it was a solo trip and I did not expect to have any visitors.
That Gator looked like he was 26 feet long as he passed between the canoe and the bank. In reality I think he might of been at 6 feet.
I took three days to film the whole river and camped two nights on the river.
 

oldbuffpilot

Well-Known Member
May 13, 2014
309
5
76
Central Kansas and Central Texas
Went out today about a mile from my deserted hometown. Went down Grand Bayou to an old oilfield canal. At the end of the canal, I noticed somewhat of an opening I'd never noticed before. Keep in mind I spent my childhood and teenage years living in a boat in these bayous. Never saw this little slough before. At some points it was 6 feet between the weedbeds. Seems like someone else found it, though. There were two fairly new tree stands in there. Saw the splashes and swirls of about 20 gators within feet of the boat. Up to 8-9 footers don't bother me. I don't begin to worry until I here something like a 1000 lb horse splashing in the water. 11-13 footers start to bother me.

The boat handled the 3 mile round trip with little effort. Cruises about 3.5 mph with no bow sway. Glide was pretty good. Plenty stable at 25" bottom. By a stroke of good luck, I put one of the bottom ribs in just about the right place for me heels to push off of while paddling. I may put some foot braces in later, though.

I forgot to get a pick of the small slough. The first pic is the "big" main channel.

View attachment 1413View attachment 1414
Thanks for posting. Good to see the e pirogue really in it's own environment. I greatly value my 30 years in Louisiana.
 

jdupre'

Well-Known Member
Sep 9, 2007
2,114
3
South Louisiana
I went out to Lake Verret this morning. The lake was choppy, with small whitecaps starting. I put in, paddled around the end of the point of the parking lot and promptly turned around and picked up. Not fun to paddle in a chop and not the best conditions for a boat with 9.5" sides.
 

Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
13,409
89
82
Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
PADDLING AND PEDALING - “Oh my!” (Ala Dorothy in the Land of Oz)

A couple of weeks ago 5 of us put into Michigan’s Grand River. The day’s paddle was 13 miles. That’s about the daily distance I like to do when we do a week long camping trip, moving daily.

A week later, a couple of us did a 10 mile bike ride. Frankly I was just plain lazy that day. - 10 miles on a paved trail is a piece of cake.

Just now, I returned from what was supposed to have been a 4 day canoe trip. But, we bull headedly pressed on in the face of cold weather (24 at night) followed in a couple days by all day drizzle. When we arrived at our planned put in at the Dead Stream Swamp, rhe wind was 15-18mph, and wasn’t anything I felt like contendjng with. So, Charlie and I holed up in his cottage that evening. Yesterday dawned calm, warm, and with beautiful blue skies. We drove a couple of miles, parked and put in at the Mio Pond (actually, a large reservoir behind the Mio Dam on the Au Sable River. A pair of loons were yodeling back and forth to each other as we paddled out. After only a mile and a quarter of paddling, we stopped at a commando camp. Set up camp, sat in the sunshine, watched a pair of bald eagles, enjoyed a cigar, took a nap, had supper, and enjoyed a small campfire. Over the night, the neighborhood beaver (the beaver family lives about 200 yards from this camp) was cavorting arojnd in the water. And, the drizzling rain came in. This morning, we broke camp in stages, in between sprinkles.