Silver River

By Linda

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Turtle and Anhinga sunning on a log in the Silver River in Florida.

On our second trip through Silver Springs State Park, we put our kayaks in about 5 miles below the head of the springs and paddled upstream.  I saw a manatee at the beginning of this trip.  The manatee swam beneath my kayak heading down stream.  It was awesome.  I was afraid the manatee would decide to catch a breath while under my kayak and upend me.  I had my camera around my neck and it won’t survive a dunk in the water.

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Cypress knees on the Silver River in Florida.

We found that paddling against the current makes it difficult to take pictures.  We took some, but it was an experience.   It’s hard to focus and frame your shot when you are moving.  When you put your paddle down, you start to drift backward with the current.

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I believe this is a Little Blue Heron but it has green legs. I thought the legs on a Little Blue Heron were darker.
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We spotted this alligator swimming ahead of our kayaks.

We made it to the 2 mile mark where the boat ramp for the campground is located.  Paddling 3 miles against the current was enough for us.  We took a break, had lunch, and drifted back downstream.  Floating with the current was quiet and allowed us to listen to the many bird sounds and spend more timing viewing the wildlife.

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Kayaking on the Silver River in Florida.
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Great Blue Heron on the Silver River in Florida.
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Wood ducks on the Silver River in Florida.
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Ibis on the Silver River in Florida.

There are some feral monkeys along the river.  They were released in the wild back in the 1930’s and survived.  Many people come here along the river hoping to see them.  We were very fortunate to catch sight of 5 of them about a mile before we exited the river.  They are Rhesus monkeys.

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Feral monkey on the Silver River in Florida.

Campground:  We camped at the Silver Springs State Park campground.  The campsites are spacious.  Most of them are nestled in the trees but a few of them are in open areas in the trees.  Not all sites have sewer hook-ups but there is a dump station.  I got us a pull-through site with full hook-ups.  There was plenty of space for the tow vehicle.  This is Florida, the sites are level.  This is one of the nicest campgrounds where we stayed.  We made our reservations through www.reserveamerica.com.

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Campsite at Silver Springs State Park in Florida.

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