Saturday, 19 May 2012

Day 17: Swamps and more rain

Our original plan was to spend 2 days poking in Charleston, but an afternoon was all we could stand. We looked around for what else to do on a dreary, grey, hot and humid day. Obviously the answer (to us) was to go to a swamp.

A marsh is a flooded grassland. A swamp is a flooded forest. Given that we were 40 miles inland and about 40' above sea level, it doesn't take much to make a swamp here.
Water and cypress knees 
More water. More knees. 
River like things
Light lies above 
Dense foliage
Reminders of Robert Frost:

The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep
Swamps are full of cool critters.
Monster dragonflies 
The interestingly named Prothonatory Warbler 
More dragonflies
A green Carolina Anole chases a juvenile 5 Lined Skink 
A coppermouth. Poisonous.
A Brown Water Snake. Not poisonous 
Close up
A herd of turtle, like bumps on a log 
Mr. Solo Dude
There were no alligators out today, but there normally are in warmer months. We don't have swamps like this where I live. It was cool, and an excellent way to spend an afternoon. Just ask the two 20 person tour groups that came though...

We made it through most of our time in the swamp without much rain. We got back to our campground and were down at the river birdwatching...
Some kind of wading birds
...when a thunderstorm hit.
Raindrops on the river
By the time we made it back to our tent, it was dumping rain (with associated thunder and lightning). The tent was fine, as we had jury rigged a fix to our leaky roof by jamming a plate under the fly at the top of the tent. It was keeping 99% of the water from ponding and pooling, but a permanent fix was still needed.

However, there was so much rain that a river was forming on the campground road and flowing under our picnic table, turning it into a swamp (hadn't I just spend the day in a swamp?). The rain pouring off my tarp was adding to the lake, and making one heck of a mess splashing. So despite having something to cook, a place to cook it, and a semi-dry place to eat, the ground under everything was covered in 1"-2" of water (and mud).

Discretion being the better part of valour, we drove to a near-by town and went out for dinner. To The Mustard Seed. Fitting, I thought.

Note to non-Calgarians: The Mustard Seed is the name for one of the homeless shelters in Calgary. These two should not be confused.

1 comment:

Edwin said...

Thanks for the note, needed that one!