Organ Pipe National Park

Organ Pipe National Park

About Me

I purchased "Sadie''s House On Wheels "in late 2007 and loved traveling in a motor home so much that I went on the road full time in late 2008. I started writing this blog to help me remember all the wonder places I have been and it allows me to share those places with my family and friends. Summer of 2013 I decided to hang up the keys for a while and moved back into my stick house. After nearly two years, I am on the road again.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

February 1-6-a full week of enjoying the "Forgotten Coast"

 We left the Inverness Moose Lodge and drove to another Moose Lodge, in Panacea, Florida.  We had contacted an the lodge earlier and confirmed there would be RV parking.   The Wakulla County Moose Lodge   greeted us with open arms and seemed very happy that we were using their dry camping facilities.  For such a small community, this Moose Lodge was very active....there was always some type of activity going on...pool tournaments, chili cook offs, taco night, etc.  The area is marketed as "The Forgotten Coast"; it is  quiet and not as over populated as some of the gulf areas.

The Gulf of Mexico was only a short drive away from the lodge , and we squeezed in a short walk  on the beach towards Alligator point after we got settled. We didn't make all the way to Alligator point on our walk, but there would be lots of other beach walks. Alligator point is in the far distance.

We were only about 40 miles south of Tallahassee, so we made a visit to the Capital building as well as the old capital building. The current capital was built in 1977 and represents the "New Classicism".  The main tower is 22 stories tall with an observation floor on the 22nd story offering some nice panoramic views.  The interior is a lot more interesting than the exterior.

 The old capitol is across the plaza from the new one  and much more southern looking and more inviting.   The inside was recently renovated and has some interesting exhibits.  The rotunda is still being renovated but the stain glass is colorful. Parking around the area is scarce.  We couldn't find any public parking lots so we were "on the meter: and rushed through most of the exhibits.

Another day we drove all the way to Point Joe and St. San Blas exploring beaches as well as the little town of Apalachicola...nearly 80 miles one way.  We had fresh local oysters at Up The Creek, raw bar, as they call them in this area..yummm.

There are lots of rivers and wildlife preserves within a short drive of Panacea.  One day we paddled the Wakulla River all the way to St. Marks with our friends Peter and Carolyn.  It was a beautiful relaxing four or so mile paddle down the quiet river.
 The river is lined with private docks which provide refuge for the manatee, but we didn't see any manatee on this trip.  I did see lots of large fish in the river and encountered fishermen along the way.
 These huge turtles were enjoying the quiet day.
 I've never seen this water flower before.
 There were lots of different water fowl along the way.
 Another one of the docks along the way.

Another day we paddled the Wicissa River.  Originally, we had planned to paddle 10 miles down the river, but after doing some research we determined the take out would involve too long a shuttle, so we opted to just paddle down the river for a while and then paddle back. The river was much wider and more shallow than the Wakulla and the current was very slow.  There was an abundance of wildlife including  alligators, river otters, turtles, snakes, deer and many different birds. I've never seen river otter in the wild before, so that was a real treat for me.  They moved pretty fast and were shy so I wasn't able to get any picture of them.

 If you look very carefully at the picture below you can see the head of an owl. He really blends in well.
 About a mile from the put in and off to a side channel  1/4 mile is Blue Springs.  It is a large deep spring and very blue.
 There are also creatures lurking in these waters.... Joel couldn't see the bottom it was so deep.
 W saw this snake sunning himself . I wouldn't have wanted to encounter him in the water.
 The alligator was not about to move.  Couldn't care less as I approached him
 even though Joel was on the other side.
 This tree was full of Ibis.

Bald Point State Park is just a few miles down the road, and one afternoon we walked all the way to the point enjoying the white sandy beaches.

The point looks over towards Panacea.

We left this quiet area very early on Tuesday morning and headed for Gulf Island National Park  so check back for pictures of more white sandy beaches and more adventures.

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