Today I thought I would take a closer look at the park. First, I went down to the water to check that out. Not the soft white sand beaches that have come to expect from Florida. It looks like the tide was out and the bottom appeared to be mucky and not very inviting, but hey, the views were still stunning.
There aren’t any beaches per se around the park (at least that I could find). It looks like the park was made for camping by tent in mind. They have two dedicated areas for tent camping and a huge area by the water where tent camping is allowed.
Next, it was off to the park facilities located approx. one mile from the campground. They have a marina, and small store that I found charges abhorrent prices. I bought two hot dogs (they were Nathans) and a Diet Coke, the cost, $11.45! The hot dogs were $4.25 each! Now I realize that we’re off the main grid, but c’mon, were not that far off.
I liked how all the buildings are painted a pastel pink. The main visitors center is closed due to damage caused by Hurricane Irma (replaced by a double wide trailer), as is the former gas station.
Signs indicate the center should be reopening by 2021, and you can still buy gas at the marina. Based on my experience, I Wonder what gas costs per gallon, almost afraid to find out. I understand that the concessions are contracted out and they need to make a profit, but the prices they’re charging are in my opinion, damn near robbery. After all, it’s only a one-hour drive to bring supplies in, it’s not that far.
Left the park center and down the road I continued. Lot of side stops along the main highway through the park and I thought I’d check at least some of them out (the easy ones). First couple of stops were so-so, and then I made a stop that had a 1.6-mile trail, and a wet and mucky one at that.
Being as hot and humid as it was, and given that my feet were hurting more and more with each step, I decided to alter my plans, shelf the trail, and head back to the trailer, I needed to get my socks and shoes off and just sit with my feet in the air, which is just what I did. I had downloaded from Kindle a book about the Reconstruction period of the U.S. after the Civil War (easy reading-not!), so I thought I could start reading that.
Later, I took the truck up to the park entrance (gee you mean you didn’t walk? How come?) so I could connect to the internet, but I left my shoes and socks behind and drove barefoot. It felt so much better with no shoes on, but still, I knew something was not normal, far from it.
I have to say that the day ended on a down note. The discomfort and concern from the sunburn began to take center stage with each step I took. I didn’t want to admit it but it’s going to take some time to recuperate from my foolish and embarrassing encounter with the sun.