Paddling The Glades

When an underwater mangrove root seizes the front of my 17-foot canoe, I grip my paddle like it’s a battle-ax. The collision hurls me out of my front seat towards a cluster of shrubs.

I fight my way out by jousting at branches and slicing down vines. A trail of vegetation in my wake, I paddle on.

Old timers complain that Hell’s Bay is “hell to get into and hell to get out of” for good reason: To start this 6 mile trail in the Everglades National Park, boaters must navigate through a complicated and somewhat frustrating series of sharp right and left turns, down slim, narrow creeks. But after three hours of paddling, the maze-like conditions ease, as the tiny passageways spread open up into broad canals and, eventually, into expansive bays.

That night, I gaze up at the stars from the middle of Pearl’s Bay. The glassy, smooth conditions of the water reflect the Milky Way back at itself, like a mirror. I float in my canoe, with the day’s struggle now a distant memory, and I realize I won the war.


One thought on “Paddling The Glades

  1. Ha! I’d forgotten about your blog! So juce to hear from you, old friend! Hope you’re well!

    Sent from my iPhone



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