After we were all Harry Pottered out (Well not me, I'd live there, but some of the others) we went on a hike my mom found. Initially we planned to go to the Everglades National Park but it was a long drive, the airboat people said that alligators aren't out this time of year and so on. Instead we did a muggy swamp hike that we had zero expectations for. It was amazing! We saw tons of alligators, baby ones 8' long ones. Beautiful birds basking in the sun with their wings out, floating over the water, eating fist size snails and sharing them with their babies. A raccoon even got uncomfortably close to us.
Once we spotted one alligator it became easier to pick them out of the marshy landscape. You'd notice their eyes and head just above the surface of the thick green surface or spikes of a tail interrupting the still water. My favorite one was where we were pointing one out in the distance and then my sister walks forward and goes OOO and one there don't go there and jumps away from the edge of the water as a giant alligator head was napping a few feet away.
Spotting the alligators and birds was really entertaining but not to be lost was the scenery. The thick vegetated bright green floating on the water, the moss dripping from the trees and the blue sky reflecting back the perfect puffy clouds. It is very different from mountain landscapes but there was something very alluring and transportive about it. Despite the mugginess this was one of my favorite parts of the trip, meandering along with my family. For fun, not even 5 minutes after we were in the car, a lighting storm blew in and dumped rain. Agin family vacation was a success!
lots of the bird and alligator photos from the Madre.