Saturday, October 15, 2016

Swamp time

My best beloved and I recently returned from an all too short visit to New Orleans. We went to join in the celebrating of two awesome people gettin' hitched, but that's a different entry. I promise.

Eileen (the beautiful - at this point - bride to be) hooked us up with some of her other friends who were scheduled to go on a 'Wild Louisiana' tour. My gut feeling to getting into a kayak and going on an adventure to look for alligators wasn't exactly a 'yes lets!' but my curiousity won out over my hesitancy regarding water and large creatures - and I am so glad we went. It was a wonderful way to meet some of Eileen's friends (she seems to collect awesome people) and see a habitat so completely different from the one we live in.

Poor Carly kind of got the short end of the stick... I wasn't a very good paddler - there were too many things to see - and try to take pictures of. Good thing she loves me so much. :)

Anyway - I took a tonne of pictures - and I still find them exciting so I thought I'd share.

The paddlin' team
Our kind of quirky guide. Things that make guiding challenging? Hearing loss...
but he will full of interesting tidbits and stories. 

Apparently this type cedar doesn't ever rot - even in water. Which also means it got very over
harvested - aren't people just great... 

This stuff is called Spanish Beard. It's on most of the trees and it looks a lot like hair. That said, we were told that people often use it for hair in costumes and then get to meet the insects that live in it, which act like chiggers. Maybe not such a good plan. 
Saw Grass - apparently quite brutal to have to walk through - but pretty to look at.

Coolest root system!  


We saw some wildlife. The hope was to see an alligator - alas, we only saw smaller creatures.

Unfortunately Carly blinked, but the dragonfly was pretty cool! 

Apparently these spiders 'swim' and latch on to fish and other water creatures. 
There was this moment where it felt like everyone could see what my eyes couldn't. I looked and looked. There was a space - which I could see. There was a dark patch - that's all I could see. I took a picture, in hope that perhaps with a bit of zoom - I could see what others could... and ah ha! An OWL!
I think it might actually be two... but without being able to change the angle, it is hard to know for sure. 
It was a great first adventure day. Sunny, warm, and great company.

Saturday, September 3, 2016

A northern adventure

Last summer - Carly and I went a fairly large roadtrip - with a flight in the middle. We came home and things got hectic - and the memory cards got set aside. I plugged them in this week - and there are some photos were pretty exciting. So - I thought I'd share some.

One of our stops was in Ketchikan, Alaska. We had two INCREDIBLE hosts that made a beautiful place even more wonderful.

On one of our first days we went on a boat tour of the misty fjords. We had a great time - the clouds rolled in and out with wonderful timing. It was great.

Ketchikan has a crazy number of eagles - they were everywhere. I loved this one, drying off on the tree. 

It was a bit windy...  
Our lovely hostess with the mostest Ms. Amanda, presents the misty fjords! 
Waterfalls that come from a giant crater at the top. They run faster when it rains - so how lucky were we that it was raining? 

Magical sun shining through! 
 While we were there it was the Blueberry Arts Festival. Carly was over the moon excited about the idea of festival dedicated to blueberries. Unfortunately - it's more about art than blueberries. Still lots of fun. :)

One of the events was a recycled fashion show. Teams were given a bag of materials - and the opportunity costume one contestant - who then had to out-perform the other 'models'. Introduce awesome host #2 - a character who can shake it like nobody's business! I don't remember if our team won... but I can't imagine any other possible outcome.

Abel (aka the fashion dancer) is a honest to goodness fisherman and we got to do a mini-tour to see the bay and his boat. 

The biggest jelly I've ever seen! 
Captain Abel and the Sea Pride! 
 We also went on a kayak tour (and follow up trip) which was awesome. Our guide the first day pointed out all sorts of cool things. Being a prairie kid - I don't have much experience with creatures that are water based - which makes them even more exciting.

Ready to go! 
So for those of you - who are also prairie kids - sea stars are the most interesting texture. Squishy yet firm...  
I even held some! How cool! 

Sea-cucumber! Gooey, squishy, tubes of intrigue.

Our watery shadow who's little face popped up at intervals throughout the trip.

Does a group of eagles have a special name - like a murder of crows? 

Totally part of the reason that Alaskan journey was fun! 
Incredible hosts and an incredible place. I hope I get to go back sometime and adventure some more.