Yes, you read that correctly- Louisiana Bayou. From gators to massive spiders, we saw it all! Taking you back to the beginning, this whole (diabolical) plan was put together by our friends at 50 Campfires. You see, they’ve been doing this incredible series called “Field Trips” where they spend a week in different areas of the country. From the Oregon Coast to the Bourbon Trail, they see it all. For this field trip, they were taking on the Great River Road, and they had just the activity for us – gator spotting in the Louisiana Bayou. Polysteels versus some of the biggest gators in the South? Challenge accepted! We gathered a group of our (not so) bravest COAST Portlanders and sent them to rendezvous with the 50 Campfires gang in the wonderful city of New Orleans.
Thankfully, we were in the best hands possible with the wonderful team at Cajun Encounters. These guys and gals are bayou veterans and know their way around (and quickly away from) a gator. Our guide, Bishop, was the absolute best. It’s a rare skill to have the ability to crack a hilarious joke while surrounded by three or more gators in a small boat yet he did this on multiple occasions. We knew right away that we were in good hands and more importantly, that we were going to keep ours. With the sun setting, we zipped up and down the wide open river in search of gators. And let me tell you, we found PLENTY. Ranging in all sizes, we got an up close and personal experience with many alligators of all sizes. Ironically, many of them had rather calming names such as Sweet Pea and Rocky. With the sun completely down, we headed into the narrow swamp in search for more critters. We saw everything ranging from giant spiders to nocturnal birds. Oh, and of course plenty of gators. It was in this complete darkness that we were able to utilize our flashlights and headlamps.
The first item we brought into play was our HP314R LED flashlight. The sun was setting on us quickly, and we needed to ensure that as we were cruising down the bayou that we didn’t hit any objects. The HP314R was perfect for this task. It’s 1200 lumen light output and Long Range Focusing optic completely blanketed the entire river ahead of us as we zipped into the narrow waters of the swamp. Once in the swamp, it was a high alert. A fun fact – snakes sit in trees and can fall into your boat. Having that knowledge, our FL75R headlamp was a must have to inspect trees and the surrounding areas. Also, possessing a reflective strap, it increased visibility to any surrounding boats. Finally, knowing the bayou is tough terrain, we had to bring our Polysteel 600R LED Flashlight. The flashlight’s waterproof feature made it perfect to handle any bayou water that splashed into the boat. Also, with the battery featuring a USB out port, we were able to charge our filming devices on the go.
Curious to see more and hear from our man, Bishop? Check out 50 Campfire’s video here: