There is always a first time for everything. Or, there is always a first time for everything you do at least once. For me, this was my first time canoe camping. I’ve camped instead of staying in hotels on long road trips. I’ve RV camped. I’ve gone glamping. I’ve camped on overnight backpacking trips. But canoe camping? This was new to me.
And you know what? Its awesome. But, a goodly part of it being awesome was the location, and of the Okefenokee Swamp I do not think enough good things can be said.
My experience with swamps is fairly succinct: When I was in 8th grade we took a class trip that included a jaunt down to the Okefenokee Swamp. A brief raft ride, some pointing at alligators, and I think someone may have drank the swamp water after the guide assured us it was cleaner than it looked.
And that’s been it really. As such, I think I should be forgiven for expecting to do any hiking in the vicinity of a
lake swamp in Louisiana.
I’ve gone my whole life without ever setting foot, driving through, or really knowing anything about Arkansas. It turns out that the south western bit of Arkansas is a lot like the two states it borders: Texas and Louisiana. Sort of a hybrid really…pine forests with swampy bits rather than the dense pine forests of Texas or the swamps of Louisiana.
Our walk (I can’t call it a hike because it was short enough to not bring our packs) took us through the woods around Millwood Lake in Millwood State Park. The path was mostly submerged. If you’re not into waterproof shoes – this hike might make you reconsider.
As I am already a waterproof mid-height hiking boot wearing kind of guy I was able to take it in stride.