I have some roots and anchors in Florida. Since the early 1800's my family has been in Florida. A background of medical interests and farming are mixed in my blood. German, Irish and American Indian - Cherokee. And even the pirate Black Beard!
My first very own boat was at the age of 18 was a 16 foot fiberglass canoe which I made payments on and therefore established my first bit of credit! Mr. Bill "Blue" Ray of Sport City gave me credit to make monthly payments.
Later in my 30's sorta inherited my Uncles big jon boat with a huge 65 HP motor. I learned so much with this boat. Not all were good lessons but more of what not to do! Prior to this boat I had not had the ability to go too fast! I had the need for speed or so I thought!
Finally 1983 after years of behind walls working in a dental office and helping my then husband catch up with his lawn business after work and on weekends we decided to start a boat business. This would enable us to get back on the water! This was the first business using pontoon boats in Marion County and boy did we start something. Soon they were not just party boats for lakes only. Local banks thought this idea would not last and would not help finance us! We got our captain licenses! We did the first environmental tours with out knowing it until someone said - Oh you do eco tours! What!?
The Silver River to Silver Springs was our first love and fishing the Ocklawaha with folks was a real joy. We had and I still have the best passenger help in training! I have learned so much and I still have a ways to go with help from my passengers.
So now I have been focusing on the Ocklawaha right outside my door! It was an area no one wanted to talk about like I wanted to talk about her due to the stinky Rodman Dam issue. I have always along with local land owners and educated Floridians wanted the dam removed to restore the lost fish populations. So I planned on putting this restoration project back up on the front page! So in 2006 I bought a 1990 24' Harris Flote Bote and put my boat in the river and left it there so I could walk out through the swamp to start my tours. Yeah no more loading and unloading at boat ramps every time!! People thought I was crazy and my boat would be stolen or at least vandalized. So far so good. And yes I have been spreading the word on getting our fish back and water quality by removing the one "dam thing" that has permantly choked the Silver and Ocklawaha Rivers! Better take a tour with me on my river!
My Mom was the nature lover in my family. She would take us on walks just outside our front yard to the Ocklawaha River! A place my mother with her mother, father and brother spent most of their spare time. Hunting and fishing of course. She shared her love for this beautiful swamp with me until she as my best friend passed away in 2013.
For a couple of years now I have gone back to the paddle! My first vessel was a canoe at age 18. Now I have a 9' Kayak. Its like floating around in a big yellow banna peel. I love fishing and taking pictures from this kayak. You definitely have a different perspective. You are so close to the water you feel you have become a part of it. You certainly have to keep a watch out! I can be so quiet and distracted that what ever I startle is only an arm length away. I am not fast enough to get that action picture! So I hope to have lots of exciting memories of these adrenaline producing moments. So far they have all been very enjoyable.
My About page is also a great place to give information about others involved with my site's topic, such as the leaders of my organization, club, or company; an ancestor; my family; and so forth.
I'd love to hear from you! So check out my pictures and make a reservation to take and trip and make some of your own memories and pictures! acruisingdowntheriver@gmail