On the Trail: Exploring the Cache River by kayak or canoe - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

On the Trail: Exploring the Cache River by kayak or canoe

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(WSIL) --  Our first week "On The Trail" takes us to the Cache River where we kayaked the Canoe Trail through America's largest northern cypress swap, right here in the heart of southern Illinois.  

Before we got started we met up with our tour guide and owner of Cache Bayou Outfitters, Mark Denzer, who began gearing us up and teaching us the basics. 

Denzer taught us proper paddling, "Some people have a tendency to do this, you know, and that's sort of an inefficient stroke, you know, it's getting to much water, and water also comes in and drips down and gets you wet."

It takes some time to get the technique down but once we worked out all of the kinks our adventure took us approximately 4.5 miles through the swamp for a two to three hour tour. There was no shortage of wildlife or sight-seeing along the way. My personal favorite was a nearly 900 year old Cypress tree with roots coming up out of the water.

Denzer explained, "This is definitely one of the older trees that has quite the amount of Cypress knees or some people call them Cypress knobs.  They act as a support system for the tree to prevent it from blowing over."

Along the way we also learned that the swamp was created by the last ice age and more about its fascinating history but we won't spoil the whole tour. Once our arms were good and tired, we even had a furry friend to greet us at the dock. 

For more information on Cache Bayou Outfitters and their upcoming events, click here.

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