Words & photos by John Streit.
With Snowmageddon in our rear view mirror, the days getting longer and the flora turning greener; you’d be hard-pressed to find a Virginia Beach local who isn’t welcoming the transition into springtime. While we have a few weeks to go before mild temperatures become the daily standard, it’s clear that the season has turned.
Our first request of the year for our famous Back Bay eco kayak tour proved to be a further sign of the coming of spring. Appropriately enough, the tour was centered around the concept of visiting popular summertime destinations during the shoulder seasons. We were stoked to host travel journalist Zach Patton of Endless Vacation Magazine and his husband Clay on a classic, radiant early spring afternoon through our Back Bay waterway.
While the surrounding forest and brackish marsh still largely showed the drab hues of winter; budding plants and trees signaled that warmer days are upon us. As we paddled through the golden afternoon light, we were treated to some awe-inspiring sights of the waterway — some common and some rare. Nesting osprey were busy gathering the materials for their summer homes and huge vultures glided overhead across a chilly sea breeze. Red-wing blackbirds perched on the reeds and brown finches sang their songs. A surprise guest revealed itself as we reached the mouth of Back Bay in the form of a perching peacock on a dead tree in Sandbridge Marsh to the east of our waterway. While no muskrats, river otters or minks showed for the tour, plenty of fish and turtle activity show that the waters are coming back to life.
We’re excited to be featured in the fall issue of Endless Vacation Magazine as Zach reviews the offseason attractions Virginia Beach as to offer! Until then, enjoy these photos of our paddle through our gorgeous slice of Back Bay.