Thursday, August 13, 2015

Blue Spring

Levi, James and I went to Blue Spring State Park.    Levi and I had never been to a springs before so this was our first adventure.   We really enjoyed it and plan on going to see other springs as well.   We had a picnic lunch, swam and snorkeled in the springs, watched a rain storm, and then walked up and down the wooden path while Levi kayaked.    

Hello dragonfly!

 Thursby House -  Before this was a state park, people lived in this house and the spring was their front yard.   How different it would be before all the wooden paths, camp areas, buildings, playground, and all those people!

 Because fishing is not allowed, there were a ton of huge fish who make their home at the springs.    These are mostly alligator gar, nearly as long as Levi.  

We put on snorkel gear and swam towards where the spring starts.  At the head of the springs, there is a big deep hole with a fallen tree branch across it.    Diving down, you can see how far it goes.   I can't hold my breath long and the pressure down there is amazing making my ears pop.     There were lots of people in this area, making noise, swimming around, splashing - some with no concept of personal space.   But if you could tune them out or go underwater, you could focus on seeing the beauty of the spring.    And there were moments of open space, where one could imagine what it would be like to be in this place all alone.  

 The water is super cold, so when we decided we were freezing, we swam back to where we got in.   A storm rolled in and we waited under a covered picnic area, watching Levi play on the playground in the rain and pick beauty berries.   Beauty berries are edible and can repel bugs, unless maybe you have stinky feet in which case I don't know what works.  

When the rain slowed down, we had a look at the river, and then got Levi's kayak out.   Blue Spring has a "boat" area for kayaks, and a "swim" area, separated by a rope and a sign.

 Levi launched his kayak by shoving it down the stairs into the water, and took off.    Because there were only 2 other kayaks in the water, I didn't think he would stay in for long without us.

We walked up and down the path.

And watched the water, the fish, and the boy. 

 That kid stayed in the kayak for a very long time, going back and forth just exploring and experiencing nature.    A calm and mostly solitary activity for someone always in motion.   He occasionally followed the other kayakers but for the most part was on his own.   He even scared some people who thought he was going to get eaten by a gator.   Right before he got out, he picked up a foam cup that was floating in the water, removing a piece of something so out of place.  

Me, just looking.

 It was a wonderful introduction to Florida Springs.   We left with a guidebook of more places to visit, this was just the first of more adventures to come.  

1 comment:

  1. I hope you can make it to some of the springs in the Ocala National Forest, and even further to the springs of the Suwannee and Santa Fe Rivers.