Weather dampens some holiday traffic

Published 5:18 pm Monday, May 25, 2009

The Memorial Day weekend often serves as the unofficial start to the summer travel season, but Mother Nature did all she could to slow that process.

The Chilton County area received plenty of rain over the holiday, delaying ball games, quenching cookouts and keeping boats on their trailers. But, Monday’s sunshine allowed fun seekers to make up for lost time.

“We have plenty of people out there today boating, swimming, having a good time,” Higgins Ferry Park ranger Frank Atkinson said Monday afternoon. “This weekend was a little slower than normal, but the weather had a lot to do with that.”

Matt Humphries, 16, came with his family to enjoy a day of tubing, kneeboarding and water skiing.

“We’re just out having fun,” Humphries said. “This is the first time we’ve come to Lake Mitchell.”

Atkinson said although Saturday and Sunday saw fewer than expected boats, the park did have each of its 29 campsites reserved before the weekend arrived.

“We had two cancel ahead of time, but the remaining 27 showed up and most of them brought boats with them,” Atkinson said. “I would guess that today, we’ve seen a little more than 50 boats take to the lake.”

Atkinson said the park has seen busier weekends on the water with fishing tournaments, but Monday’s turnout was significant.

“They are definitely making up for lost time on Saturday and Sunday,” Atkinson said. “As far as pleasure boats, this has been a pretty good day.”

– Staff Writer Joelle Motes contributed to this report.