I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again. “Every time I go fishing, it’s an adventure”. I love being in nature, and you never know what things you will see if you’re looking. I have seen and been close to fox, deer, turkey, otters, dolphin and sea turtles. I have even had snakes try to come into my boat. My favorite however, is when I come across alligators.
The first time I saw an alligator while fishing, I just so happened to be kayak fishing. A friend paddled just ahead of me as we headed up a smaller creek. He started around the next bend when all the sudden he started paddling backwards quickly. When I got to him I saw what the problem was. A big gator was sunning himself on the bank just around the corner. He slowly crawled back into the water and disappeared barely making a ripple.
Now we had paddled a long way and were so close to my fishing spot that we just had to keep pushing forward. I won’t pretend that it was an easy decision. In fact, it took a good pep talk from my friend to get me to continue. I trembled as I paddled forward knowing that I was about to become lunch for this monster. Every breath I took was surely my last. Any second this beast was going to leap from the water and tear me in half.
Obviously we made it safely, but it was this first terrifying experience that has made me so obsessed with these living dinosaurs. I love getting up close to them, and my favorite thing to do is to get others who have not experienced them up close and personal. Seeing somebody experience that for the first time is the same as watching a child catch that first fish. It is new to them. It is exciting and perhaps scary. This is not something that everyone gets to experience. So if you do get the chance, embrace it, cherish it, respect it, but most importantly, keep your distance.