Traveling Ted is a blog that takes readers along on my adventures hiking, canoeing, skiing, and international backpacking. Many blogs focus on one aspect of backpacking, but I tackle both the outdoor adventure side and international exploration as well.

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I finally made it to the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge. Since I have been to the Everglades, Big Cypress, and Corkscrew Swamp, I was really in no hurry to visit here. It has always been on my radar, but once you see one swamp you have seen them all – right? Any swamp lover knows this is not true, and I found that I should have made the Okefenokee Swamp a priority much earlier. I had an amazing canoe camping adventure.

Okefenokee Swamp National Wildlife Refuge

Okefenokee Swamp National Wildlife Refuge photo essay- My destination was Big Water

Related: Corkscrew Swamp boardwalk empire

Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge photo essay

The highlight of my trip was seeing my first ever wildcat. While camping at the Big Water campsite, a bobcat stealthily prowled the opposite shoreline at dusk while I was enjoying the dusk light.


An elusive bobcat in the Okefenokee Swamp

Related: Okefenokee Swamp bobcat sighting

Foggy beginnings

When I left Stephen C. Foster State Park, you could hardly see ten feet in front of you the fog was so thick. Dew hung to every spider web. It was an eerie morning and very appropriate for the day after Halloween. I emerged from the canal on to Billie’s Lake as gators quietly swam away or submerged into the dark water. By the time I was ready to turn north into the Okefenokee wilderness up a canal to Minnie’s Lake and Big Water, the sun began to burn away the fog.

Okefenokee Swamp alligator

fog is like a natural black and white filter

The water was incredibly low, so I barely made it over some narrow sections through the swamp up to Big Water. I managed to make it though, but the story of my adventure is for another post. For now, I am going to tell the story of my adventure via photographs.

Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge

Anhinga perched high atop a cypress tree in the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge

Okefenokee a beauty of its own

By the time I left the Okefenokee, I was in love. Just like a I love the Everglades and Big Cypress; however, despite the similarities, the Okefenokee has its own personality and beauty. I cannot explain it. I hope these photographs can explain it, but if they do not, you will have to visit yourself to experience in person. If this is something that interests you, stay tuned for more information and tips on how to camp in the Okefenokee.

Okefenokee canoeing

Billie’s Lake in the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge

Billie's Lake Okefenokee

Alligators are everywhere on Billie’s Lake – Okefenokee Swamp

Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge

Sun beginning to burn off the fog in the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge

Okefenokee spider webs

Water beading off spider webs in the Okefenokee

Okefenokee canoeing

Sun begins to emerge in the Okefenokee

Okefenokee Swamp

Onward to Minnie’s Lake and Big Water in the Okefenokee Swamp

Okefenokee Swamp National Wildlife Refuge

Narrow path through the cypress trees in the Okefenokee Swamp National Wildlife Refuge

Okefenokee Swamp alligators

Alligators everywhere in the Millie’s Lake section of the Okefenokee Swamp

Minnies Lake

Minnies Lake on the return home

Okefenokee swamp

Navigating the narrow channels between cypress stumps

Okefenokee Swamp

Okefenokee Swamp

Okefenokee Swamp

Brilliant colors in the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge

Big Water Okefenokee

From the campsite at Big Water – The view I had that I was admiring when the bobcat showed up

Big Water camp Okefenokee

The view from Big Water looking south

Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge

Big Water campsite in the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge

Okefenokee canoe rest area

Loaded canoe at the rest area about four miles from the start

Okefenokee Swamp

Cypress tree in the middle of the channel in the Okefenokee

Adventure on!

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