Bayou Tour

The kids would not let us leave NOLA without going on a bayou tour.  I wasn’t sure it would be worth the money, but I have to say, it did not disappoint.  The tour guide had grown up in the swamp and knew the area like the back of his hand.  His entire family had been there for generations.  He had stories you cannot believe from animals to celebrities who he had encounters with over the years.

Our first encounter was with “Big Al” a 13 foot male alligator.  He had an appetite for hot dogs and marshmallows.  We learned that acids in the alligators mouth dissolve the hot dogs and marshmallows immediately in his mouth, so he never tastes them.  Alligators taste buds are actually located in there stomach—which I did not know—but we liked watching him eat just the same!

Cade even got to feed Big Al a hot dog!

We saw lots of other animals, several smaller alligators, frogs, and I spied the Barred Owl (above glowing red eyes) as the darkness fell.  The tree (left) is the one from many movies, including Interview with a Vampire.  It is one of the oldest trees in the swamp.  I love cypress knots, and in the bayou they are actually protected.  We learned about the poaching that happens, and how they try to counter it.  Alligators have made a huge come back here, like in many parts of the US thanks to these types of conservation efforts. 

As  you can imagine, when our guide asked Cade if he wanted to drive the boat home, my boy did not hesitate!  Please note his hair (and the lady on the right) blowing strongly!  This guy had the boat cranking!  I was *slightly* concerned, but he did a great job taking us back to the docks!