The ever-elusive “quickie” detour to Toro Bayou

Toro Bayou, aka Toro Creek, is one of my favorite places to chill and enjoy nature at its finest.  The bayou, or creek as most locals call it, meanders, twists, bends and curves quite a bit between Sabine and Vernon Parishes in West Central Louisiana.

On our way to Southeast Texas yesterday, the girls and I stopped at Toro for what I planned to be a quickie look at the level of water on the bayou.  I was curious as to whether the flooding along the Sabine and massive managed releases of water from Toledo Bend were affecting the bayou’s level.  As has pretty much always been the case with any “quickie” stop to look at Toro, the stop turned into a good, long, happy visit.

More often than not through the years, I have found Toro’s level to be on the low side.  I have canoed it countless times and we usually end up pushing our canoes a small but still mention-able percent of the six mile or so trip.  Yesterday, the bayou was high.  Not extremely high, just high.  I tried to think of whether I’ve seen it higher, and my guess would be that this was “as high” as I had seen the creek but not necessarily “higher than”.  Mostly I had seen it lower… so it was quite breathtaking to see it at the level it was yesterday and in all its glory.

We sat on a white sandy beach on Toro, enjoying nature at its finest.  Other than the sounds of the occasionally very distant aircraft and more frequent very close gun fire, it truly felt as though we had stepped back in time… more than a hundred years ago when one could clearly hear each and every one of the the songs and calls of several different species of birds, the quiet rustling of critters in the woods, and the relaxing flow of water as it made its way downstream towards the Sabine River.

We reluctantly determined we had to end our quickie detour of Toro when we realized it was nearly 1 p.m.  We had planned to be far closer to Beaumont by this time… umm, well actually, maybe in Beaumont by this time.  Beaumont was another two hours away.  Oops.

Did I mention I love Toro?

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