Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Sunny weather, great time for cruising

Tennessee Aquarium Naturalist, John Dever aboard the River Gorge Explorer.

Temperatures were approaching 90 degrees yesterday, but there was still a pleasant breeze in the Tennessee River Gorge. The warm air rises quickly above the water in between the mountain slopes producing excellent thermals for soaring birds. The 3:30 pm cruise offered some pretty spectacular views of several hawk species gliding effortlessly above the River Gorge Explorer. A kettle of vultures, numbering nearly thirty birds, were seen spiraling upward in a tight circle directly overhead. And everyone was able to observe a male osprey floating on air, carefully scanning the water below for a meal. While we didn't get to watch him dive in for a fish, you could see him through binoculars moving his head right and left in search of a snack. The female osprey was diligently tending to her fluffy-feathered chick. It is now nearly half as large as the parents.

Today I received this nice note from Carol:

"A small group of us took the 12:30 cruise this past Friday, 5/29. This was my second time but it was more enjoyable this time due to the tour guide. He was so knowledgeable about everything - the river, the wildlife, the civil war, Chattanooga. He is definitely in the right job. He also had a great sense of humor and just made the trip very nice. You could tell he loves his job. I could have listened to him for hours and hours. Several people in my group made the same comments about him.

Just wanted to give credit to such a great employee.

- Carol, Chattanooga

Thanks for your nice note! Others might consider cruisin' in style before a night of music downtown: Cruise around Moccasin Bend before attending Riverbend (June 5-7, 9-13) Enjoy a thrilling ride aboard the River Gorge Explorer before you enjoy the entertainment at Riverbend. During the festival, passengers on the Explorer's 3:30 pm excursion get a Riverbend wrist band for just $5. Cruise in style aboard the southeast's only high-speed catamaran, then arrive in style like the main stage artists.

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