Tuesday, December 30, 2014

A Short Visit To The La Chua Trail

Well, it's day #8 here at Paynes Prairie State Park. The time is FLYING by, and I sure do wish I could slow it down. I am having a BLAST here, and I know that Gary is too. While we've been here, he has split his time between hanging out at our campsite, exploring the park, and antique shopping. The extended stay has allowed him to do all the things he likes to do, without having to rush so much. He's even slept in a couple of times, and he rarely ever does that. I know that we're not supposed to feed the wildlife, but what does it hurt giving a few peanuts to some squirrels? That's mainly what I've been doing while Gary and Dodge are off having their own fun. You know how much I LOVE squirrels! The plan was for Gary and Dodge to go to the La Chua trail yesterday (Monday), but the weather wasn't that great. It didn't rain, but it looked like it was going to at any minute. Gary stayed here with me instead, and began the long process of posting our camping pictures on his Facebook page. He made some good progress. Today the weather was much better, so Gary and Dodge headed up to the north entrance of the park where the La Chua Trail is located. The pictures I've posted are basically in order from the entrance to about a quarter mile into the trail. That's as far as Gary decided to go this time. He just didn't feel like walking the entire three mile distance of the trail like he did when he was there on a previous visit. He wanted to take some pictures (and even a couple of short videos) of the alligators, and that's exactly what he did. Personally, I think the alligators are pretty scary looking, but he thought that all of you who view my blog might like to see them. I guess it's good to show a variety of wildlife instead of a constant stream of just squirrels. Anyway, enjoy the look at a little part of the La Chua trail. If you visit Paynes Prairie, it's a MUST SEE part of the park.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Camping For The Holidays At Paynes Prairie

Many months ago, Gary booked our favorite campsite here at Paynes Prairie for a leisurely Holiday stay. I am SO glad he did, because I truly love it here. We have other campsites that we like in this park, but campsite #18 is the most secluded, and we're all about that. We usually don't camp anywhere for more than five days (usually less), but we are here for TEN days this time, all the way from December 23rd until January 2nd. It's GREAT to spend this much time in such an AWESOME place. When we got here, our campsite was still occupied. So, we rode around through the park for a couple of hours to kill some time. We hung out under some trees in the parking lot at the visitor's center for awhile, and Gary had some lunch there. Then we headed over to the main picnic area. While Dodge and I rested up, Gary took a walk and snapped a few pictures. Unfortunately, it wasn't the prettiest day. The pictures he took around Lake Wauberg look kind of dismal because of the clouds and light fog. I'll ask him to take some better ones while we're here. We made another pass through the campground, and our campsite was empty. We finally got settled in about three hours after we first arrived. Our campsite isn't a very big one, so it wouldn't be of much use to a large motorhome or trailer, but it's nice and cozy for us. I'm usually the oldest trailer in the campground almost everywhere we go, but there's a camp host here this time that has a 1966 Yellowstone. It's a cool old trailer, and it's nice to see something more "vintage" than I am (besides Gary, of course). It rained on and off during our first two days and nights here, but it faired up and was nice and cool for Christmas. It's been nice ever since. We are currently on day number six of our ten day stay. I've been busy feeding the squirrels, visiting with passers-by, and watching TV, so I'm a bit behind with my blog postings. I'll try to do better. Gary and Dodge have gone antique shopping several times, so I've been here alone quite a bit. It's Sunday, so we will all hang out together and watch football today. Gary plans to go to the LaChua Trail tomorrow and take some pictures of the wildlife there. If he comes back alive, I'll post a few in the coming days. We are having SO much fun, but we always do when we're here at Paynes Prairie. It's the BEST!!!

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Return To Sebastian Inlet

Sebastian Inlet is one of those "hard-to-get-into" Florida State Parks, especially when you're planning to camp there in the winter months. Gary booked our favorite campsite (#36) early this year, just to make sure we had our spot when the time came. I'm glad he did. I LOVE Sebastian Inlet, and campsite #36 is one of my favorites anywhere we go. It's shady and the most secluded in the whole campground. Besides doing his usual antique shopping in the area, Gary spent most of his time hanging out with me at the campsite or exploring the park. This was our third visit to "Sebby" as I like to call it, but there's always lots of things to do and endless photo opportunities. I KNOW that he had just as much fun as I did. He was constantly traveling back and forth across that big bridge that separates the two halves of the park. The campground and boat launch is on the south end of the bridge. The main fishing pier and the Inlet Grill and Gift Shop (apparently an excellent place to eat and take pictures from), is on the north end of the bridge. The beach can be accessed from either end of the bridge, but Gary likes the north end better. We had two problems at the park, but neither was anything all that bad. One was the lack of a good phone and internet connection, and that's the reason why I didn't post while we were there. Gary would have to drive down to the picnic pavilion at the south end of the park to make a phone call or check on favorite internet sites. The internet there was not that consistent either. It all depended on the atmospheric conditions, I guess. The other problem occurred on our final night, when for some unknown reason, I was constantly being climbed on by raccoons. Gary figured it was because he made toast for a late night snack, and the raccoons smelled it. All I know is that I DID NOT enjoy having those creepy looking little critters using me as a climbing tree. One of them was still hanging around the following morning when we were packing up for our trip home. As you can see from the pictures, "Sebby" is a very pretty place to hang out. The five days we were there just FLEW by, but that always happens when we're having a good time. We headed home on Friday, December 19th, stopping for a couple of hours at the Wildwood Antique Mall in Titusville. Gary never passes an antique mall that he doesn't like. More news soon as we head to Paynes Prairie for the Holidays. As you know, that's another one of our FAVORITE parks, and I can't wait!