Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Before the Next Adventure Begins ~ LOTS of Photos of Before What Happens Next

There's not much to take photos of in an RV fixing place, unless you want to see my new toilet and kitchen faucet. For me, exciting. For you, maybe not so much. So with my limited online time I thought I'd catch up on our camping time in Highlands Hammock State Park.

For a short stay, it was a great place to hang out while waiting to get to the RV place on Monday (last). Lots of trails and deer and day people having parties - they were so quiet I wouldn't have known it was a party except for the balloons in a couple of picnic pavilion areas. The LOUD people were scattered around the campground, hooting and hollering and bothering more sedate people long into the night. I just figured it sounded normal to me...

This is a tower. A see things from up high tower in Lake Placid, Florida. It's closed, though the sign says open. Now you can just see the tower.

Seeing the tower from afar.
Highlands Hammock State Park is a beautiful place. Spacious campgrounds, picnic pavilions and well marked (though not obnoxiously) trails make this, the oldest park in Florida, special. Even with the bears.

These carvings are in the picnic pavilion area, dedicated to the CCC

This is pretty much how I like to see bears close up and not on my way to the bathroom.
One of the trails led through a swampy area. We had no idea how beautiful it was going to be.

This is on Big Oak trail. One of the massive oaks in Florida, it finally succumbed to time and elements

I told Jonny that photos would never come close to the reality. But I tried.

How weird to see this palm tree growing from the top. But there were a lot of symbiotic growths here. We'd only gotten started.

Jonny on the Big Oak

Then, at a junction with no signage at all, we took the way not marked. I'm so glad we did. It was mystical, mysterious, bizarre and beautiful all at once. We were truly in the Florida from long ago...with a walkway, so we didn't have to swamp out our shoes.

There in the middle of wildness was this wild? grapefruit tree. Had the fruit not been so high I'd have loved to try it. Where's my fruit picker now?

Edible? I'll never know.

I'd need a whole different camera to show how high this was, how massive. Each limb could have been its own tree. It was beautiful and jaw droppingly huge.

This is the bottom of that tree.

In the swamp, colors are muted. Except for this one.

There were a lot of palms with these strange growths around them. Strange only because we didn't know why they were there. Water marks? A particular growth around this area? Some trees had three or four of them at different heights, some with growths like the ferns, some not. I'd never seen it before. Anyone know the why of it?

This crazy vine looked like wire at first. But it was a crazy vine instead.

The farther in we went, the more strange it became. Root systems, at first on trees, were convoluted and captivating.

Then we saw them on their own, just humps of twisted roots, some near trees, some not. 

After three or four trails we came out to the road again. Once more, a massive but fallen oak was there. The ways the park people had tried to save it over many years was fascinating. Bricks, ceramic tubes, huge spikes - they all worked for awhile but gravity and time eventually won the battle. I loved that the effort to save it was so obvious. One tree. A tree that mattered. They tried. That is beautiful.

One of the tries was cement. Now, the cement and the tree look almost the same. But you can see the very large spikes also used to try to hold it in place.

The reddish bits broken pieces of what used to be used as drainage ditches, those old clay tubes. 

A giant is fallen
After that we picked up some steaks and potatoes along with some charcoal, but why not add some wood from the ranger station? Five bucks, nine nice pieces of wood...cheaper than a movie.

Note the fine china and crystal. We don't go halfway here.

Oh yeah, warm that sake! Systems not all go in the Turtle yet, the fire was still burning. That was easy.
Jonny took off the next day and I wandered.

The deer came closer than ever

It was a perfect Day of the Dead ending
Tomorrow work will continue on the Turtle. I'll spend the night. Then we'll see if everything works and if it does, I'll spend one more night just so Robert can be SURE everything is working and be on my way. These people are amazing. I'm still the luckiest woman in the world and I'm blessed to have met these folks, but I'll be glad when everything is working right and we're on the road again. That's the royal we. Of course.

Have a we can work it out Wednesday. Do something watchfully.


  1. good pictures and i have seen that tower and i forget why it was built there.. even though i was told by a friend who used to lived in sebring just north of there... that's the backbone of florida and up around avon it gets close to 200 ft above sea level which with global warming is something to consider..!

    1. There are a fair number of those type towers around Florida. I'll have to keep them in mind if there is a big surge here while I'm around!