I stopped for a night’s rest and a day of paddling at Crystal River, Florida, about an hour and a half north of Tampa. It is the year-round home of manatees although they are more prevalent in winter. Nonetheless, I was lucky enough to encounter perhaps a dozen of these peaceful creatures and even managed to touch a particularly friendly one. That aside, the scenery alone (especially Three Sisters Springs) would have been worth the stop. The following videos are some highlights:
A video of me rolling in the bay at Crystal River and again at Three Sisters Springs:
A video of me kayaking at Three Sisters Springs:
A video of me practicing kayak re-entry at Three Sisters Springs:
They say that the sailors in the old days would mistake manatees for mermaids. I can now see why!
Not seen in that video was the underwater photographer trailing behind her, apparently testing some 3d equipment.
Me kayaking out of Three Sisters Springs and receiving many compliments on the kayak:
A compilation of several manatee encounters at Crystal River: