Back From the Swamp

Smile for the Camera

Well that wasn’t so difficult. I spent three days in the Everglades, at Flamingo Campground, which is at the extreme southern tip of the Florida Peninsula.

I went there with the goal of getting away from the world for a while, and finding some peace and quiet. I really didn’t manage to find peace. The first night was relatively peaceful, but from that point on there was an ever-increasing number of people on spring break who were busy making a racket well into the night. In that respect, the trip wasn’t what I had hoped for or wanted. It was still a good trip though.

On the plus side, I set my tent up at the site nearest Florida Bay. Looking out my tent entrance, I saw one lone tree by the shore, and then Florida Bay and some of the Florida Keys. Unofficially it was the southernmost dwelling on the Florida Peninsula while I stayed there. I couldn’t ask for a better view. I also couldn’t have asked for better weather. Cool evenings and warm days, and I barely saw a cloud the entire time I was there. I spent a good chunk of time hiking and taking pictures. I took a boat ride and a 4-hour canoe trip. In my downtime I read “Seeing the Light:: Wilderness and Salvation: A Photographer’s Tale” which I picked up at Clyde Butcher’s Big Cypress Gallery. It’s a story of the man and his wife, as well as the Everglades and some of it’s more colorful characters.

I got to see a Bald Eagle for the first time in the wild. I saw Falcons and Hawks, Manatees, plenty of Alligators and a few Crocodiles as well. No snakes, and thankfully the mosquitos didn’t really come out until dusk when I was already turning in for the night. I lived three days basically out of what I could carry in my backpack. I took my time getting to the park, stopping at the Big Cypress Gallery, and took my time getting home, stopping to take pictures along the way.

So it wasn’t exactly what I was hoping for. No great revelation was to be had. It was still a fun trip and well worth the effort and the $58 it cost me for the park admission and campsite.

-R

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