First Day of Summer 2016

With June 21st being the first full day of summer, we decided to make the most of it and spend the day on the boat.

Dropping it in the water at the Cedar Key Boat Ramp, our plans were to float up to Manatee Springs which is a First Magnitude Spring that flows into the Suwannee River and cool off in the fresh spring water. The 36 mile drive up to the springs went by quick. We left the throttle open and had the warm summer breeze blowing over us the entire way. We did see two huge manatee’s on our ride up but the Suwannee is pretty dark, tanic water, so I wouldn’t get in to try and get photos of them.

Once at the springs, we tied up to the floating dock and walked up the long boardwalk to where the springs are. The scene is as picturesque as it gets and something straight out of a movie set. I suited up with my snorkeling gear and jumped right in, but it was all I could do to talk Cindy into getting into the water. She sat on the steps using the excuses of “there is snakes”, “what about alligators”, “it is too cold”….blaa, blaa, blaa. Finally I whined enough that she got in just so I’d shut up. She thanked me later on for making her get in.

The ride back down we made a pitstop at Treasure Camp Restaurant for some lunch/dinner after working up our appetites with all the swimming. It’s so cool to be able to pull up to a restaurant with the boat, walk in and eat and just float away.

The ride home was a little bumpy as the tide was getting low, so I went out into open water of the Gulf. Our boat is made to run in really shallow water, but big choppy water is not all that fun. No biggie, we both just held on and bounced along. It was a 39 mile ride back down as the detour of open water added a few miles to trip. Got back to Cedar Key just as the sun was setting and still had a half tank of fuel. That’s amazing since we’ve added the new gas tank. We used to run out of fuel or have to carry extra 5 gallon cans. With the new tank, and 4stroke motor, we get better fuel economy and can longer distances due to the added capacity. No more running out and being left stranded!

The only good thing about working in the Hospitality industry is that we have our days off mid-week. We work every weekend when all the visitors are in town. But Mondays and Tuesdays are our weekends. What this means is we get to play mid-week when most are at work. This means when we visit the springs, there are only a few other people there. The entire day on the boat and some 70 miles of travel we only waved as we passed 4 other boats. We basically had the entire river to ourselves and loved every second of it.

The day wasn’t over yet. We watched the sun set as we washed down the boat and with the big Strawberry moon rising on the horizon, we loaded the camera gear out of the boat and into the truck and went and sat down on the shoreline to watch the moon rise. It was over 70 years ago that the summer solstice coincided with the full moon. So needless to say, it was the perfect way to end an already epic day spent welcoming in Summer.

Bonish Photo, Cedar Key, Full moon

This is what a full moon rising mixed with a long exposure looks like

Cindy Bonish, Bonish Photo, Cedar Key, Boating

Summer Wind and Boating to keep you cool

Manatee Springs, Underwater Photography, Bonish Photo

I have no idea what type of fish this is, but it let me get so close to it I could practically touch it with the camera

Manatee Springs, Underwater Photography, Bonish Photo

Me looking up at Cindy who is watching me dive to the bottom of the springs

Moon Rise, Cedar Key, Bonish Photo

Moon Rise Over Cedar Key

Manatee Springs, Bonish Photo, Cindy Bonish

My view is always beautiful no matter where we are

Manatee Springs, Underwater Photography,

Split Shot of the cypress lining the springs

Cindy Bonish, Bonish Photography, Boating

My Captain, Companion and First mate rolled into one

Manatee Springs, Underwater Photography, Bonish Photo

Looking into the springs

Alligator, Suwannee River, Bonish Photo

You can pretty much guarantee where ever there is water in Florida, there is an alligator in it

Strawberry Moon, Summer Solstice, Bonish Photo

When the Full Moon coincides with the Summer Solstice, it’s called a Strawberry Moon. This was my Canon 7D camera with a Canon 400mm lens with both a 2x extender and a 1.4x extender giving me the equivalent of a 1792mm focal length!!!

Split Shot, Underwater Photography, Bonish Photo

I love my Split Shots and the seaweed is pretty spooky around the cypress

Split Shot, underwater Photography, Manatee Springs, Bonish Photo

Cindy giving me the “No, I’m not going in any further than this” argument

American Flag, Boating, Suwannee River, Bonish Photo

Being born in America and having these freedoms is like winning the lottery every day!

Underwater Photography, Bonish Photo, Manatee Springs

Insert Jaws Music while looking at this photo

Moon Rise, Cedar Key, Bonish Photography

Cedar Key Moon Rise

Manatee Springs, Underwater Photography, Bonish Photo

I Love this Cypress Trunk. No matter how hard I begged, I could not talk Cindy into swimming through the base of it. I need a Underwater Model if anyone is interested!

Manatee Springs, Underwater Photography, Bonish Photo

Perfect way to spend the first day of Summer

Manatee Springs, Swimming Hole, Bonish Photo

Manatee Springs Post Card

Howling Dog, Bonish Photo

I leave you with Little Howling at the Moon!

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7 Responses to “First Day of Summer 2016”

  1. Kathy SturrJune 22, 2016 at 2:53 pm #

    Wow, you have some incredible shots here Pat & Cindy! I hope that I can bring some prints back with me to the lake. I love that you lived it up on the first day of summer and that you are grateful for our American freedom! It is refreshing to hear how great America really is these days! Gosh I miss Cedar Key but I am really loving our little lake shack. The best of both worlds! Can’t wait to visit you this coming winter.

    • Pat BonishJune 22, 2016 at 8:37 pm #

      I bet your area is beautiful this time of year!! Would love to visit it one time and see it via boat!!

  2. DarlaJune 23, 2016 at 2:10 am #

    Loved all these shots and the accompanying narration!

    • Pat BonishJune 23, 2016 at 2:25 am #

      Thank You!

  3. Jodee GravelJune 23, 2016 at 2:26 pm #

    Cindy’s lucky to have you badgering her to get wet and enjoy the springs…..and you’re lucky to have the view 🙂 Great shots as always. That Cypress trunk is amazing, as is the giant Strawberry Moon! Love the colors in both. How great to have the beauty to yourselves, and the fuel capacity to do it without worry. Hope the rest of your summer is just as magical!

    • Pat BonishJune 23, 2016 at 6:58 pm #

      Thanks Jodee! Cindy said that she thinks I like to have to beg her to do stuff like that?!?!?! I’m not sure what that means, but she explained that if every time I asked her to do something and she just did it, I’d get bored with her. I guess she’s still playing hard to get 🙂

      Safe travels and hope you have a great summer!!

  4. JudithSeptember 4, 2016 at 9:52 pm #

    Well well, what a disaster for you all.Just stayed with you in our RV a few weeks ago, and immediately felt good about the place.Yes, amazing pictures and story.Lived through hurricane Ike in Galveston when we had a home on the beach there, so I know what “clean up” is…Ugh.Fully intend returning to stay longer soon.We have a cattle ranch and lots of animals to take care of in East Texas, but if anyone is going anywhere I am coming too.!Cedar Key, and area is my kind of place

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