48 mins drive from downtown
Boat-Drop Map (GPS 30°20'16"N 90°0'14"W)
Osprey leaving nest

Probably my favourite (not a spelling mistake in Scotland) kayaking spot near New Orleans, and here's why: it's gorgeous; it's protected; and after 2 minutes kayaking you can't hear the road anymore. Add to that, it's teeming with wildlife, has a resident Osprey family, is easy to get to and has an easy boat-drop point. I've been here a number of times - and every time I am impressed.

On this particular kayak trip I took along my son, Miles for the trip. The weather was near perfect (check out Cane Bayou Data on the sidebar) and so there were more paddlers than usual out on the water. Not a problem as everyone was very friendly and I didn't see a single power boat - I hardly ever see a motorized boat here, another reason why I love it.

"What do parents owe their young that is more important than a warm and trusting connection to the Earth...?"

Theodore Roszak, The Voice of the Earth

After getting out on the water, Miles was quick to announce to any kayakers (especially if they were trying to sneak by) that we were "alligator hunting". It was not long before we came upon our first alligator, and like true fearless hunters, we slid respectfully by. Our total 'gator count was 3 for the day. We were also graced with seeing turtles, a watersnake (I'm thinking Mississippi Green Watersnake), and a plethora of dragonflies, cypress oaks and white water lilies. Something we were really lucky to see was 4 Louisiana Irises out in bloom (bottom right). They appear briefly and are gone, much like myself on a night-out.

Louisiana irises in bloom.

We really sauntered along this trip. Between me taking photos and Miles trying out his paddling skills (not to mention a European lunch, of course) we were out on the water for around 4.5 hours. If it were an adult-only trip and you prefer a brisker pace, 2 hours would be sufficient.

You can follow Cane Bayou to were it opens to Lake Pontchartrain (an amazing place to see sunset). But as the wind was making things choppy near to the exposed lake opening we turned around before that. Right at turn-around point we saw an Osprey (top left) swoop in to land on a nest where it joined their partner and to a chorus of chick chirping. This nest, which the monogamous pair will return to year-after-year is something I had seen the pair adding sticks to in the previous months. With the sound of chick-chriping that makes a lot more sense now.

Recommendations?

If you have a favourite kayaking place near to New Orleans, I would love to hear about it! Send any information - location, what makes it great and pictures to:

Email: egretkayak@gmail.com

Disclaimer

I'm not responsible for anything, ever.