TOUR AMERICA 2019: FLORIDA PANDHANDLE

Home Is Where We Park It:  Suwannee River State Park

Date:  April 29, 2019

Hiking the Park and Learning It’s History: Part Two

Another beautiful day to go exploring in the Park.  There were Three trails that I wanted to explore today and then I would be finished.  Before we get to the Park let me introduce you to another of God’s beautiful people, Sharlen Lane

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and her wonderful dog Jake.

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Sharlen restores vintage looms and spinning wheels, and is a docent at numerous historic Seminole reenactments throughout Florida and southeast Georgia.  She travels from place to place in her vintage 1968 Shasta compact travel trailer.  By her own admission it is a little rough around the edges but she states it suits her just fine.

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It was nice to be able to spend some time with her and listen to her talk about her travels.

Turning our attention to the Park now.

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Suwannee River was among the first parks to become part of the Florida State Park system. An original 300 acres was purchased in 1936. The park now has more than 1800 acres in three counties: Suwannee, Madison, and Hamilton.

Its namesake river is 246 miles long  and winds its way from southern Georgia to the Gulf of Mexico.  The Suwannee’s flow is dependent upon rainfall, and water levels can fluctuate greatly.    The park is also part of The Suwannee River Wilderness Trail  This trail  is a partnership of locations along the river that provide amenities to river users, these locations have been designated as river camps, hubs and parks.

The best way to discover the river, other than a trip on it, is to walk the

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Let me share with you some pictures of the river itself.  How I wished I was up to taking a canoe out for a day.

Stand real still, let your mind wander can you see the paddle wheeler coming down the river?  Can you hear its whistle as it approaches the dock?

 

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The river is crystal clear but usually has a brownish tint due to decaying leaves on the bottom.  My RV neighbor who has been coming to this park since he was a kid says the fishing here is some of the best anywhere.  Why, just today he caught over two dozen!

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Those are chunks of limestone on the far bank.

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Along the trail I discovered this.

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Time now for another trail.

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Let’s walk the trail.  Watch your step, the roots are nasty!

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A babbling book, clear and unspoiled by man.  So serene and tranquil.  Notice how clear the water is.

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Interesting plant formation, and there are those who say there is no creator.  Really?

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The headwaters of Lime Sink under which are the caves.  Notice the old growth trees, the reflection of the forest in the water.  A picture perfect setting.

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No matter where I go I seem to find stairs!

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Anyone need a tree house? I wonder how this came about?

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We come to the end of the trail where the Lime Sink rushes over rocks and roots as it tumbles into the Swannee River.

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One more short trail.

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Part way up the trail there used to be a tall limestone formation made up of one rock on top of another called Balanced Rock; however, the last time the river flooded it reduced it to this – just a pile of limestone rocks.

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Suwannee River State Park is also part of The Florida National Scenic Trail  a 1300 mile long congressionally-designated, long-distance hiking trail that weaves its way across Florida from Big Cypress National Preserve in the south to Gulf Islands National

Map of the four geographic regions of the Florida National Scenic Trail

Seashore in the western end of Florida’s panhandle.  Access from Suwannee River State Park is via The Big Oak Trail, a 16 mile loop that runs in and out of the park.  Sorry, I’m not going to try either of these Trails!

Suwannee River State Park has even more than its many trails and its historic river.  It has a playground, picnic areas, cabins to rent and lets not forget the camping area.  The sites are spacious, level, and offer FHU.  An army of volunteers makes sure that the park and its facilities are always spotless and clean.  Its also so, so quiet and tranquil.

Suwannee River Stat Park, our home for a few more days.  Hope you enjoyed our tour.

Our day on The Road of Retirement is now coming to a close.  We’re trying to get Gertrude to find a satellite so we can watch our favorite shows. So far no go.  Time for plan B which means switching over to local channels.  Wish us luck.  We only need a two hour window.

Thanks for coming along with us again since we always enjoy your company.  Join us again tomorrow, who knows what we’ll find to do.

These are the voyages of  Graybeard and it’s occupants, four paws and two humans.  Our continuing mission: to explore as many new states as possible, to seek out new acquaintances and make new friends, to boldly go where we have not been before

See you on down the road

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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